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Universal app support for Macs with M1 is here

22 December 2020

Announced last week, Microsoft has been releasing new versions of their Microsoft 365 for Mac apps that will now run natively on Macs with M1.  This means that the popular Office apps – including Excel – will run faster and take advantage of the performance improvements on the new Macs too.  These new Office apps will be “Universal”, i.e. they will continue to run (as well as they ever did!) on Macs with Intel processors. 

If you have automatic updates turned on, you should have already started receiving these updates.  Otherwise, you can go to the Mac App Store and click the Updates tab, or with Microsoft AutoUpdate, you can go to your Office app’s Help menu and choose ‘Check for Updates’.

That’s not all that Microsoft has done.   There are quite a few other new features, either out now or coming very soon:

  • With more than 115 million active users daily, Microsoft Teams has become a critical part of the way many people are navigating the current situation.  Microsoft Teams is currently available in Rosetta emulation mode on Macs with M1 and the browser.  Furthermore, Microsoft is working on universal application support for M1 Macs
  • The new Outlook for Mac has been redesigned to match the new look of macOS Big Sur.  The new Outlook for Mac will support shared calendars for customers subscribed to the Office Insider Mac Beta Channel in the first months of next year

 

  • There is an updated Office Start experience for Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint and Word for Mac that incorporates the Fluent UI design system, which will be available very soon
  • ‘Tell Me’ is a search box that quickly gets you to the Office tools you need or actions you want to take by just typing what you are looking for in Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint and Word for Mac.  Microsoft Search in the new Outlook for Mac allows you to type out your query or question using language you use every day to find emails, events and files, with no clever phrasing required.
  • With Data from Picture, you can take a photo of a table directly on your iPhone and turn it into data you can edit in Excel for Mac.  This handy new feature uses Continuity Camera on your Mac and is also available now

  • Voice input is a growing part of our digital lives and can be a great way to simplify your workflow.  A new dictation toolbar with voice commands for creating content with your voice is coming to Word and Outlook for Mac.  In addition, to help you check spelling, correct grammar and get writing style suggestions, Microsoft Editor has been brought to Word for Mac (never mind).  These updates should be available to customers with access to Microsoft 365 for Insiders in early 2021 
  • When creating new content as a team, the ability to collaborate around documents and presentations becomes especially valuable when your team is not in the same location / working from home.  The new commenting experience in Word for Mac enables a contextual view of comments that allows you to focus on your content without missing active comments by contributors and reviewers.  Modern commenting also includes improved @mentions in PowerPoint and Word for Mac that make it easier to reply to comments.  The new @mentions experience is available now in PowerPoint for enterprise customers.  Modern commenting for Word is in the Office Insider Beta Channel now and coming to Current Channel Preview in February 2021

  • When an active collaborator adds filters or sorts the data in a table of a shared worksheet in Excel, in the past, your view of a shared workbook would change.  As mentioned previously in this newsletter, Excel Sheet View is a new way to create customised views to sort and filter your data without disrupting what others see.  This is now available on Excel for Mac 
  • Microsoft Information Protection sensitivity labels allow you to classify and protect your organization’s data with minimal effort through manual and automatic content labelling.  Manual labelling is available in Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint and Word for Mac.  Automatic labelling is coming to these same apps for Microsoft 365 E5 customers in early 2021.

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