Office 2016 arrives on the PC with an emphasis on teamwork and cloud features

By midian182
Sep 22, 2015
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  1. Microsoft has officially started the worldwide rollout of its Office 2016 application suite - the first new version of Office for Windows in almost three years. For the 1.2 billion people who use Office, this latest iteration brings a slew of new features including a greater focus on collaboration and cloud services.

    Office 2016 - which is available as a standalone package or as part of a subscription to Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud service - will bring new versions of familiar Windows apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook.

    "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."

    Bringing a new focus on teamwork, Office 2016 introduces a real-time document co-authoring feature to Word. The application’s new ‘share’ button enables the creator of a document to invite others to collaborate on it.

    With Office 2016, Outlook will see the biggest changes in its history; Microsoft claims it has improved the app's search function to make it faster and easier to trawl through huge numbers of emails, while the new ‘clutter’ folder will be used to sort low priority messages. Outlook 2016 can also use the new Groups feature instead of distribution lists so users can communicate and collaborate with their team members.

    Additionally, Microsoft has introduced a new feature called Tell Me to several Office apps. This allows users to type in what they want to do in an app using their own words, and then Tell Me will explain what steps to take as well as offering additional resources. "It's moving to a ‘tell me what you want to do' process rather than just describing how a function works in the Help system," explained Richard Ellis, Microsoft's Office Division Lead in the UK.

    The new Office 2016 apps are available in 40 languages and require Windows 7 or later. A one-time purchase costs $149 for the Office Home & Student; $229 for the Office Home and Business; and $399 for Office Professional. Any customers who subscribe to Office 365 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, Microsoft stated.

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  2. RustyTech

    RustyTech TS Guru Posts: 818   +384

    If Office 2013 is any indication, there is NO WAY to activate the suite without having a MS account. Thanks, but no thanks. I've been using Office 2007 & 2010 without issue and will continue to do so forever if I have to - and it looks as though I will have to.
    Come to think of it, I believe alternatives exist for Outlook, Word, and perhaps that's the route I'll be heading in the future.
    Evernessince likes this.
  3. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,436   +592

    I have used every version of Office, from 97, 03, 07, 10 and 13.
    If it weren't for Outlook and some Medical sites still requiring docx and xlsx formats, we would have moved away from it a long time ago.
    Microsoft thinks its one of those things that users like enough to put up with the cost and upgrades, but its causing another slow bleed in their fan base that will eventually lead to another reason why they are losing their @$$ on multiple fronts.
    Evernessince likes this.
  4. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Maniac Posts: 302   +104

    You're sadly mistaken. You can activate Office 2013 with a Microsoft account or a standalone product key. FACT. I personally activate mine with a key every time I have to install it. I would guess Office 2016 would be no different.
  5. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,079   +331

    Correct I picked up a copy of Office 2013 on my employee discount program for $11 and I was able to activate with a cd key no ms account was required.
    Darth Shiv and Matt12345170 like this.
  6. RustyTech

    RustyTech TS Guru Posts: 818   +384

    I don't know guys...just 2 weeks ago I was trying to activate office 2013 with a key and it wouldn't let me...had to have an account.
    Evernessince likes this.
  7. I use Libreoffice
    noel24, Evernessince and TadMSTR like this.
  8. veLa

    veLa TS Evangelist Posts: 699   +164

    There are also additional, less advisable ways to active office without an account.
  9. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,101   +529

    These features are really only going to be useful to small companies that don't already have workflow hammered out like this.

    To large businesses and students, there's no benefit to anything that has been added here.

    Either stick with what you have or move to free software. $150 is too much for most students who are already bleed dry by book prices and tuition.
  10. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,420   +469

    It's funny how people still think that microsoft earn money by selling things to home users, and that everyone would move if "some" sites no longer required xlsx or docx.

    I haven't seen to date a free alternative to MOffice that has been as powerful or as useful for -here comes the bang- office usage (Pun intended).

    Now with the ability to have 1 tb of storage for the same price it would take a service like Dropbox but + the office suite, there is no excuse for cheapskates (Did I write it correctly?) not to hire the service, specialy when it also gives you the ability to install on 5 computers for home, family or whatever usage with their own storage space and bla bla.
    Lionvibez and NightAngel79 like this.
  11. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,436   +592

    OpenOffice ain't too shabby.
  12. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    I hear LibreOffice is the better option of the two.
    Techman3 and noel24 like this.
  13. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,601   +370

    It won't let you use the key if you have mismatched media. E.g. an MSDN key will only work with a MSDN ISO and a retail key will only work with a retail ISO. They use different hashing algorithms and will say your key is invalid.
    I believe there are registry style techniques for forcing the key in like what you can do for the same problem with Windows installations but the GUI key interface is not likely to be amenable.
  14. Hammayon

    Hammayon TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +13

    I'm still using Office 2010. If it aint broke why fix it? The new versions completely change up the format and the GUI all the time. Why relearn office very 5 years? Why should we live our lives according to what these corporations want and not our own free will. I'd say stick with 2010 for another 5 years. Only change over if the new feature benefits outweigh the time invested significantly.
  15. Randomthom

    Randomthom TS Enthusiast Posts: 48   +16

    As an office 365 subscriber I updated immediately. Mistake... Outlook 2016 is not compatible with Exchange 2007 which my workplace is using. Now I have no way to roll back (have found instructions for business & enterprise editions but not for home).

    If anyone knows I'd much appreciate you sharing that info! :)
  16. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,079   +331

    I use to think the same thing and now I use office 2013.

    You don't have to relearn anything and will find things within a min when you start looking around.

    My 13 year old brother picked it up and was using it quickly I think you can handle it.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015
  17. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,420   +469

    Why relearn? Well I can tell you why, but I won't because your point of view is so prehistorical I'm really amazed that you follow a tech news site.

    I'll tell you anyhow, my main reason is corporate business.
  18. Hammayon

    Hammayon TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +13

  19. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 2,420   +469

    That's the thing, I don't need to persuade you for me it's awesome and it goes great for OFFICE work specially with corporations that use Sharepoint. If you don't feel like it good for you, I was trully amazed, because it goes against everything techies believe, it's like following a car forum and thinking everything is crap and driving a Yugo car =P

    Also, learn to quote.
  20. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,079   +331

    Some people are set on their ways reminds me of users not wanting to leave Windows XP same for windows 7.

    You do have a good point most people that read this site are considered techies. And in this industry its constantly changing and you have to learn to adapt quickly. This mentality of I don't want to use this because they changed a couple menu items is only doing yourself a disservice. Technical people are suppose to be able to learn and adapt quickly its how you survive in this industry. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but that attitude will only hold you back and things will move forward if you like it or not that is the nature of technology.
  21. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    And mechanics are expected to be mechanics. And I bet you can't tell any one of them how they will be or what they will use as a mechanic.

    Techies are not some zombie that should take anything passed our way. Techies are the ones that know what is going on and should be the voice for those that don't. You need to stop badgering those that do express their opinions. If you want to disagree with their opinion that is fine, but you should never want them to be silent zombies. As techies it is our position to shape the playing field for those who don't understand how the field is played. And to do that we voice our opinions, regardless of how others see us. Being able to adapt and survive is not the only criteria techies should hold as a standard.
  22. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,079   +331

    I'm just stating the facts of the industry were are in. He is free to use office 2010 for the next 20 years if he likes that's his business.

    As for shaping the playing field that is not us maybe Google,MS, oracle,apple those are company's that can shape we are just players in the game we don't create the game.

    The only people I know have those kinda views are old people who are set in their ways and the technology has left them behind along time ago. Being able to adapt and survive may not be the only criteria but it is the most important in a industry that is constantly changing to deny that fact is the real problem.
  23. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    So you are saying the ones that use the products don't actually shape the way the products are made? That we should accept products the way they are made whether we can use them or not, all because the engineers said it will work? Somehow I get the feeling you are an engineer and I am a user. And under such condition we will likely never agree on what is best for the user. That is unless the engineer finally decides to listen to the users needs.
  24. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,079   +331

    No I'm not saying that I'm saying being static in an environment that is dymanic isn't always the best route.

    This quote from Bruce lee summons it up nicely.

    “You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend.”
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 24, 2015
  25. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    That way corporate can flush you down the drain. There are such times when you don't want to conform, in spite of being told it is the right thing to do. If you want to be a blind follower and jump off bridges*, that is your choice.

    *Yeah I took that to the extreme on purpose.

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