Microsoft is giving its Office 365 apps a makeover

Remigio Civitarese
Giugno 13, 2018

Simplified ribbon-Microsoft is introducing an updated simplified version of the ribbon that is created to help users focus on their work and collaborate easily with others.

Features will only become generally available once they've successfully navigated rigorous rounds of validation and refinement, says Jared Spataro, corporate vice preside for Office and Windows marketing.

Office 2019 suite includes a new roaming pencil case and ribbon customization, a new focus mode in Word, in-click sequence, Morph transitions, 4K video export in PowerPoint, focused inbox in Outlook, and more. Inspired by a new culture of work, the changes are created to meet the demands of customers who tell Microsoft they love the power that Office apps deliver but would prefer a simplified user experience.

Next up, with the new colors and designs, users can expect to see Fluent-Design inspired changes across the Office web apps.

For those who are interested in this Office 2019 for Mac preview, the company published a "how to participate" website here which allows businesses to sign-up for its Commercial Preview program, including all of the prerequisites before a business can actually sign-up. They'll first make an appearance on the web version of Word, and they'll make their way to Works, Excel and PowerPoint for Windows for Insiders later this month.

For everyone else, Microsoft is moving forward cautiously, especially when it comes to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for Windows. Users can also still expand the ribbon back to the classic three-line view if they see the need. These updates icons will render with crisp, clean lines on screens of any size. A rollout for Outlook for Windows is planned for July, along with Outlook for Mac in August. The updated so-called "zero query search" feature will give users suggested content, people and documents based on which app they're in and where they are.

It sounds like these are just the first new features in a larger Office redesign.

Microsoft also is making search smarter by providing recommendations that officials said are "powered by AI" and the Microsoft Graph programming interfaces. These features are already included in Office 365 ProPlus but are not available in Office for Mac 2016. Once Microsoft collects feedback from those users, it will roll out the changes to everyone else.

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