Microsoft Corp. began the worldwide release of Office 2016. At the same time the company announced new and enhanced Office 365 services built for team productivity.
“The way people work has changed dramatically, and that’s why Microsoft is focused on reinventing productivity and business processes for the mobile-first, cloud-first world,” said Satya Nadella, chief executive officer of Microsoft. “These latest innovations take another big step forward in transforming Office from a familiar set of individual productivity apps to a connected set of apps and services designed for modern working, collaboration and teamwork.”
Nadella wrote about the new Office on the Official Microsoft Blog. Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president for the Office Client Applications and Services team, provided more insights about Office 2016 on the Office Blog.
Office 2016 delivers new versions of the Office desktop apps for Windows, including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Project, Visio and Access. By subscribing to Office 365, customers can get always-up-to-date, fully installed apps for use across their devices, combined with a continually evolving set of consumer and commercial services, such as OneDrive online storage, Skype for Business, Delve, Yammer and enterprise-grade security features.
Together, the new Office and Windows 10 are the most complete solution for doing. The Office 2016 apps run beautifully on the best Windows ever, including the new Sway for Windows 10 to create shareable, interactive stories that look great on any screen. Windows Hello logs you into Windows and Office 365 in one simple step.1 Office Mobile apps on Windows 10 empower on-the-go productivity, and work with Continuum2 so you can use your phone like a PC.
Maria Martinez Torres, Director for the Office and Office 365 Business Group at Microsoft New Zealand, said the new Office offers kiwi businesses new ways to collaborate and work smarter.
“The new Office will enable new and exciting ways for kiwis to work together, and was designed with the clear understanding that people currently find working together harder than it should be,” she said.
“By helping New Zealanders to share their ideas and collaborate more easily – for example, by being able to IM, screen share, talk or video chat right from their documents – the new Office empowers people and their teams to do and achieve more,” added Martinez Torres.
Amongst the new features, co-authoring is now provided in Word, PowerPoint and OneNote desktop software, including real-time typing in Word that lets you see others’ edits as they make them. Skype in-app integration across the rich client apps allows you to IM, screen share, talk or video chat right in your docs, while Office 365 Groups are now an integrated part of the Outlook 2016 client app and available on your mobile device through the Outlook Groups app, delivering a consistent team experience across the suite.
Introduced today, Office 365 Planner helps teams organize their work, with the ability to create new plans, organize and assign tasks, set due dates, and update status with visual dashboards and email notifications. Planner will be available in preview to Office 365 First Release customers starting next quarter.
Significant new updates to OneDrive for Business are coming later this month, including a new sync client for Windows and Mac, which will deliver selective sync and enhanced reliability. Updates also include increased file size and volume limits per user, a new user interface in the browser, mobile enhancements, and new IT and developer features.
Unveiled earlier this year, Gigjam is available Wednesday in private preview and will become part of Office 365 in 2016. GigJam is an unprecedented new way for teams to accomplish tasks and transform business processes by breaking down the barriers between devices, apps and people.
The new Office 2016 apps are available in 40 languages and require Windows 7 or later. Office 365 subscribers can choose to download the new Office 2016 apps as part of their subscription. Automatic updates will begin rolling out to consumer and small-business subscribers next month, and to commercial customers early next year. Office 2016 is also available today as a one-time purchase for both PCs and Macs.