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Microsoft begins rolling out a simplified ribbon for Office
14 June 2018, 06:19 | Cameron Gross
Microsoft Office 2019 for Mac previews improved inking features and more
The new ribbon will first appear for some users of the browser-based version of Word on Office.com, followed by the Windows version of Outlook for select members of the Office Insider early access program.
Also showing up in Word Online today are new colors and icons.
One interesting aspect of the change is that Microsoft won't just do away with the current ribbon interface; Office 365 users who prefer to work with the full ribbon bar can switch to it with a click on the down arrow icon located at the end of the ribbon bar. Microsoft's goal with these changes is to offer users a more powerful and streamlined experience. If you don't like it, you can still expand the ribbon to its former size.
In related news, Microsoft yesterday announced a Office 2019 for Mac Preview for commercial customers.
The new icons are meant to render more crisply and cleanly on screens of any size and to look better for those with vision impairments.now there are more than 10,000 different icons in Office, Friedman noted, and Microsoft wanted to make them more consistent and accessible from the get-go, using color, contrast and other design elements. They'll hit Word on the Web first, followed by Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on the desktop later this month.
This overhaul will also feature a new search experience.
On the Microsoft 365 blog, Chief Designer Jon Friedman notes that Fluent Design is coming to Office and Office.com. However, they did mention that in August the changes would be rolling out to Outlook for Mac.
Microsoft on Wednesday announced a design update to Office suite which includes popular applications such as Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote and Outlook. Also going live on the Office.com iteration of Microsoft's productivity suite, this new redesign has three major focuses in all. Microsoft calls this "zero query search" and notes that the recommendations are powered by artificial intelligence and Microsoft Graph.
Microsoft revealed that it worked on search to make it more useful.
The final release of Office 2019 for Mac will ship alongside Office 2019 for Windows in the second half of 2018. This further cements the subscription-versus-perpetual license split that the company has already been exploiting over the last few years: Office 365 subscribers get a trickle of new features each month to their desktop applications; perpetually licensed customers don't.
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