Microsoft announces Office 2016 rollout

“Office” connotes a singular space, a collection of tasks done by one. “Office connects you to your work no matter where you are”, Mr Haileleul further added. What matters is connectivity and, increasingly, collaborations. While people with basic needs are still better off using either Google Drive or the web version of Office for free, business users in particular will appreciate the much-improved sharing features that finally allow them to use Office not just to get their own work done, but also to collaborate with coworkers. And yet the name “Office” persists.

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In a blog post highlighting some new features of Office 2016, Microsoft Corporate Vice President Kirk Koenigsbauer said the company would begin rolling out monthly updates to Office 365 subscribers. Firstly, Word, PowerPoint and OneNote all include co-authoring. Other than a bit of a facelift, and some admittedly welcome added features that we first reviewed in the Preview version (and won’t re-hash here), for the most part it looks and acts like Office 2013.

A long time ago, in a computing universe that seems ridiculously far away (1988), the first version of Microsoft Office debuted.

Office 2016 apps with Office 365 deliver new capabilities for better enterprise security and protection. Fear not if you have to quickly close the laptop as most recently used documents feature spans the Office service to help you pick up where you left off.

As for the Smart Lookup feature, this is an upgrade of the old “Lookup” function that allows you to select a word and look it up in the dictionary or on the Web. “GigJam is a new way for teams to accomplish tasks and transform business processes by breaking down the barriers between devices, apps and people”, Microsoft claims. It has also been optimized to run on Windows machines running Windows 7, Windows 8 and the latest introduction, Windows 10. Android and iOS support is now in preview. Additionally, the live search feature is now faster, allowing you to whittle down your inbox. Files aren’t attached to emails (or conversations); you’re simply giving access to the file on OneDrive to the team.

The big sell, however, is that Microsoft has put worker mobility at the forefront of both its product and marketing strategy. There are reasons for people to like and dislike comments in a work thread that may have nothing to do with the quality or usability of the comment. Then again, this Skype integration probably makes the most sense for businesses that were already using Skype. The transparency in the workflow can be a good thing – it can genuinely boost your productivity and help you manage your self-sabotaging workplace habits.

Outlook shows recent documents in its attachments button. Office 2016 even uses color-coded tags, just like Google, to display the names of whoever is editing. Underneath Plans is an interface that might be familiar to anyone running Trello. For those in love with their spreadsheets, Excel 2016 now includes integrated publishing to Power BI and new modern chart types. If you’re someone who prefers buying Office outright, you can do so today too.

In functionality, Planner is very similar to some other existing services, such as Trello, but because it has the advantage of being deeply integrated with Office Graph, it may become the favorite among those organizations committed to Office.

“I don’t have to open the Skype for Business client to talk to colleagues; I can do it right from within Word without leaving it”, said Richard Ellis, Microsoft’s Office Division Lead in the UK.

It, too, has Pinterest flavor.

And that, really, is Office 2016 in a nutshell. The magic of this is that you don’t even have to type anything in. It is also your work being made transparent.

That’s right: He said Office on the desktop is going to get lots of new features every month.

Like numerous tools in Office 2016, PowerPoint is rich and deep, which means it can be hard to find the tools and settings you need. Outlook has a new Groups feature that lets you keep tabs on collaborative work on shared documents without rummaging through invites in your inbox.

Tell Me does as one would expect. For Microsoft this is not possible because its Office apps are present on the devices itself. Well, if you don’t need more than a quick reference, anyway.

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Microsoft Office 2016