Microsoft releases new version of Office

Microsoft releases new version of Office

Historically, Microsoft has charged users of its software outside of its U.S. home market substantially more for access to its products. Microsoft not only made the apps free to download, but also allowed basic document editing, as well as uploading to the cloud, all without the requirement of an Office 365 subscription.

Office 2016 comes with new versions of the desktop apps for Windows, including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Project, Visio and Access. "Office 365 with the new Office 2016 apps is the smartest productivity suite ever and it connects you to your work no matter where you are", Haileleul further added. "We are targeting the Office 365 Groups and Yammer integration to be available during the first half of 2016", said Microsoft in a FAQ concerning the features planned roll-out across the Office ecosystem.

A similar feature - dubbed Office 365 Planner - helps teams organise their work, by allowing them to start new plans, organise and assign tasks, set due dates and update status.

Moving customers to cloud versions of Office software helps Microsoft because they are delivered as a subscription, which means customers pay recurring fees rather than making one up- front purchase. The motivation is that the 12.9-inch size of the iPad Pro display is too large for it to be considered a mobile device and as such make use of the Office suite that is available to other iOS devices in the iTunes store.

In Microsoft Office 2016 you can simultaneously edit documents in Word - finally! The company also announced new and enhanced Office 365 services built for team productivity.

With some of these changes, it's easy to see that Microsoft is jumping on board the collaborative and mobile working trend.

That's fine for those who have already bought into the Office 365 way of doing things, and there are plenty of reasons for taking on a subscription, not least the ability to install Office on multiple machines for £8 per month.

There's built-in Data Loss Prevention (DLP), Multifactor Authentication, Information Rights Management and in the future Enterprise Data Protection (EDP) will launch in Windows 10, which allows more secure corporate content sharing across managed apps and network/cloud locations.

Office 365 provides automatic updates, but for consumer and small-business subscribers, Office 2016 updates will not roll out until next month.