Shared Office codebase for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android means more features for more users faster

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: Office 365 Blog articles.

Our most-popular Office 365 apps—Excel, PowerPoint, and Word—are designed for the modern workplace, with cutting-edge features like real-time co-authoring, AutoSave, and more. With our newest version of Office for Mac, version 16.9.0, we've extended these capabilities to Apple users; in fact, this release marks the first time in 20 years that Office shares the same codebase across Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android for core functionalities.


This achievement means users across platforms will gain access to new Office capabilities faster than ever. We’ll prioritize the release of these capabilities based on top customer requests and feedback, along with integration and validation considerations for each platform. All Office capabilities will be tailored to the platform’s specific UI, giving them a native feel, and take advantage of certain unique features, like the MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar.


Read on to learn more about new Mac capabilities available with this release, and in our latest release on iPad. Please note, some of these features require an Office 365 subscription. Such features are marked with an asterisk below.


Boost collaboration and ease-of-use across the core Office apps

With this release, co-authoring in PowerPoint and Word is more powerful than ever. You and your colleagues can create a PowerPoint presentation or edit a Word document on Mac in real-time, seeing each other’s changes as they happen. User flags indicate exactly which slide or sentence your colleagues are editing. For Excel, we’re excited to bring basic co-authoring to Excel for Mac users for the first time. In all the core Office apps, presence thumbnails show you who else is currently working in the file. We’ve extended these capabilities to Office Online, too, so you and your team can work together on files from virtually anywhere. Co-authoring is only available in files stored on OneDrive or SharePoint Online.


Derek blog 1.png


AutoSave*—All core Office apps are now equipped with AutoSave for files stored on OneDrive or SharePoint Online. AutoSave is exactly what it sounds like: Your file is automatically saved every few seconds. Plus, if other people are working in the same file, they can see your changes almost instantaneously. And if you need to roll back, simply check your file’s version history for a list of changes and access earlier copies. AutoSave can be switched on and off using a dedicated toggle button in the ribbon.


Get more data insights faster in Excel

New chart types—Excel’s multitude of charts and graphs has made it one of the world’s premier data analysis tools. Excel 2016 for Mac now includes even more chart types, including sunburst, treemap, histogram, waterfall, and more, to help you visualize your data in new, meaningful ways.


Derek blog 2 (med).png


New worksheet functions*—We’ve introduced a pair of new worksheet functions, IFS and SWITCH, for Excel users on Mac to simplify data calculations. The IFS formula takes the place of multiple nested IF statements, making formulas with multiple conditions easier to comprehend. The SWITCH formula evaluates one value against a list of values, and returns the result corresponding to the first matching value.


Table slicers—Using slicers, you can filter table and PivotTable data to quickly curate only the information you need. Slicers also indicate the current filtering state, making it easy to understand what exactly is shown in a filtered table.


Faster calculations—We first introduced multithreaded recalculations in Excel 2007, and have since refined it to help calculations in Excel 2016 for Mac run even faster. To speed up formula outputs, Excel tries identifying parts of the calculation that can be recalculated concurrently on different threads. Read the article on multithreaded recalculations in the Microsoft Dev Center for examples and formula restrictions.


Keep your audience engaged with new PowerPoint features

Trim media*—The best PowerPoint presentations are those that use powerful imagery, instead of words, to convey a message. But what if that imagery is video or audio that’s too long to sensibility include in your presentation? The Trim tool in PowerPoint addresses this issue. With it you can cut unwanted content from the beginning and end of video and audio clips. This feature is only available for media you’ve inserted from your computer and not from the web.


Derek blog 3 (med).png


QuickStarter*—If you’re building a research-heavy presentation, using QuickStarter is the perfect way to begin. QuickStarter creates an outline for you based on your presentation’s subject. After conducting initial research, the tool builds out several slides—a title slide, a table of content slides, one slide for each sub-topic, and more—that you can choose to keep or delete. The result is a set of slides that gives you a strong foundation for developing a detailed and factually accurate presentation.


Highlighted changes*—Part of the newly introduced co-authoring feature, PowerPoint automatically highlights changes others made to a shared presentation while you were away. This way, you can quickly see what was updated, when, and by who.


Laser pointerTurn your mouse into a laser pointer to draw attention to specific parts of your PowerPoint while presenting. You can also change the color of the laser pointer to match the style of your presentation or company.


Do more on mobile in Word

Learning Tools*Learning Tools in Word for iPad and Word Online was designed to help you improve your reading skills and word pronunciation. Perfect for students or non-native speakers, Learning Tools comes with a variety of features: Read Aloud lets you hear your document; Syllables breaks down words into syllables; Text Spacing increases the space between characters; Column Width reduces visual crowding so you can just focus on the words; and, Page Color gives you the option to change the background to a softer color.


Derek blog 4 (med).png


Your feedback is important to us—it’s the primarily reason these capabilities were chosen for this release. Please visit our UserVoice sites for Excel, PowerPoint, and Word to submit your ideas for future features. We invite you to follow Microsoft Office on Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and helpful tips for getting the most out of your Office apps. You can also follow the social feeds for Excel (Twitter and Facebook) and PowerPoint (Twitter) for more specific updates.


* Feature requires an Office 365 on Mac subscription.






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.