Dustan Gourlie from the MacBU has posted a blog entry on their Office 2008 Enterprise Series page explaining deployment options for the forthcoming Office 2008. It will be distributed with as a package installer and will no longer have a drag and drop option (clarified in the comments).
They also said (in the comments) that updaters will be packages too but the one thing that is not yet clear to me is if those updaters will update all previous versions of Office 2008, or will they still be delta updates that require a certain install order? When you have hundreds, or even thousands of Macs to keep up to date, you will inevitably end up with a mix of Office versions across your enterprise unless someone dedicates a ton of time to ensuring that every machine gets updated and/or has a way to verify the version on all your machines before pushing a delta update. For this reason, I have resorted to just packaging up the whole Office folder instead of messing with incremental updates.
Another thing they talked about was fonts. The fonts install will be optional but they don’t really say if they will be installed by default or not (ARD does the defaults). They also don’t really say if they will be installed in user libraries or the main library but since it is an optional part of the installer, I assume it would be the main library. This is good news but not ground breaking since trashing the “Do Fonts” application (in the Office folder) would prevent every user from getting a fonts install. I hoping we will be able to just do without the Microsoft fonts in our environment since they are known to go corrupt anyway.
Time will tell on the details.