MICROSOFT HAS TAKEN the shutters off the latest version of its evergreen Office suite for Windows users. If you’re someone who prefers buying Office outright, you can do so today too. That was the way people wanted to work at that time. It’s a new addition to the Office lineup, and it’s the most impressive change to this latest version of Office. Today, things are changing. While Office 2013 focused on storing your documents in the cloud and introducing some touch improvements, Office 2016 is really created to make sharing a lot easier across all your devices.
Confusing matters somewhat, Office-not Office 2016, but Office generally-is all over the place now.
Microsoft already offered that capability in its Web apps, but this update brings the same features to the native Windows desktop apps. This ain’t your father’s Office anymore. Anything more and you can pick up the desktop apps on Windows and Mac as part of Office 365. But it’s designed to work best with Windows 10, and to take advantage of unique Windows 10 features. And how useful are the handful of non-collaborative features added to the core of Office?
OK, this may not seem like a big deal. The first, called Colorful, provides an opaque header for each application that is color-coded for that application, and makes each resemble its mobile app cousins. Microsoft didn’t provide us with a full list, but it did underline a few big highlights.
That said, for business users (the people this is really aimed at, anyway), having in-line Skype conversations could in theory eliminate the need for other chat apps, like Slack.
As well as being able to put teams into groups, with shared conversations, a dedicated OneNote Notebook that is available to all, Outlook group in-boxes and more, Skype in-app integration means you can call or message any members you’ve invited to edit a doc from within the application.
Word, PowerPoint and OneNote 2016 all support co-authoring with multiple authors of content hosted on OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint Online.
“We are seeing much more momentum on the cloud side and that’s where you’ll see the innovation first”, he said.
Microsoft estimates about 1.2billion people use some component of Office.
Tell Me helps you easily and quickly find the right Office feature or command, and Smart Lookup brings insights from the web right into your documents.
Another exciting time saving feature is the “Tell Me” bar, which promises to cut the legwork out of discovering how to use specific functions. It speeds up the process if you want to send something you’ve only just created. Your choice. The search engine powering Smart Lookup is Microsoft’s own Bing.
“We’ve seen a transition from personal productivity to team productivity”, Villaron said. “A normal document attachment would result in duplicate files everywhere, with no single truth”.
Microsoft is also adding an email organization tool called Clutter. Previous versions of Office have had similar functionality, but this feels a little more refined and easy to use. So those of you who exclusively rely on Office apps to ensure productivity will be pleased to see this new tool added to your suite. The Tell Me feature works here too, so that you can enter the name of a chart and see the data instantly reshape itself onscreen to fit whatever new chart type you selected.
And it is those businesses that are perhaps most critical to Microsoft’s bottom line. Like all charts, as the data is updated, so to is the chart. You can also manually save whenever you’d like to create a version history that helps organize the document further. They collect emails from retailers and businesses with whom we don’t want to have any contact whatsoever.
An image of Microsoft Word shows how people will be able to collaborate. It is delivered as a web app.
Once you have the data you want to work with, you literally use your mouse or finger to circle it. Anything you specifically don’t want to share, you X out. Numerous new features were also debuted in Office 2016 for Mac.
The new marketing spin is a shift toward what the company recognises as a fast-evolving decentralised workplace as well as a direct swipe at Google in the battle for the business market. Or check out Microsoft Office Sway, a unique way to send animated reports, stories, presentations or newsletters.
We also have significant new updates to OneDrive for Business coming later this month across sync, browser, mobile, IT control and developer experiences. This new client will offer improved reliability and selective sync, as well as increased file size and volume limits, Microsoft says.
And, like their brethren for Android and iOS, Microsoft has made those apps free for small PCs and tablets, as compared to Office 2016 which remains an entirely paid product.
Microsoft Corp.’s new Office software will incorporate Internet-connected features such as Skype and the Cortana digital assistant in both its cloud and packaged versions, underscoring the importance of installed software even as the company focuses on moving customers to subscriptions.
Opt for an Office 365 Home package and it costs £7.99 a month or £79.99 for a year’s subscription.
The feature is available in Excel, Word and PowerPoint, but not the rest of Office.
Office Home & Student costs $149, while Office Home & Business has a price of $229. It learns from context, so if you keep writing it may self-correct errors. It wasn’t just nice-it was a fully touch-friendly version of Office that the company released well before it had one ready for Windows.
“Microsoft Delves further pushes the contextual aspect, where personalised content is pushed to users from across Office 365”, he said.
The real change is in how Microsoft thinks about Office updates for the future.
Office 2016 is highly recommended.