What’s the difference between Office 365 and Office 2019?

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What do I get with this trial? The trial gives you access to all the features of Office Home. It includes: Share with your entire family — for up to 6 people. For use on multiple PCs, Macs, tablets, and phones.
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Both versions are excellent, of course, and we’ll go into the pros and cons of each later in this review. Pricing, Versions, and Compatibility As always, Microsoft offers more versions of Office than anyone wants to keep track of. You need Windows 10 bit or bit for the PC version; older Windows versions aren’t supported for Office , although Office will continue to work under Windows 7 until January , when Microsoft stops supporting Windows 7 altogether.

Windows 8 support will stop in January Subscribe or Buy? One reason you may not have noticed Office is that Microsoft prefers to publicize its subscription-based office suite Office Home , and its business version , instead of pushing you to buy Office Many corporations, colleges, and government offices prefer what Microsoft calls “perpetual” products like Office and its predecessor Office , rather than shelling out annual fees to Microsoft and tying themselves to Microsoft’s cloud services.

For most word-processing, spreadsheet, and presentation work, the buy-once Office and the subscription-based Office are effectively the same. That said, Office subscription adds real-time collaboration features including the excellent Microsoft Teams , high-powered mobile apps, access to cloud-based research and editing tools, and regular infusions of new features every few months. In contrast, Office will stay the same—except for monthly security updates and occasional bug fixes—until you decide to upgrade it to a future version a few years from now.

Unlike Office , Office doesn’t require you to sign in with a Microsoft account unless you want to. Users concerned about privacy are better off ignoring the sign-in button in the title bar of their Office apps altogether. On the downside, Office doesn’t include access to Office’s high-powered mobile apps. I discuss additional reasons why some users may prefer the buy-once Office version to the cutting-edge Office version in a later section.

A Familiar Face Microsoft introduced the Ribbon interface in Office and hasn’t made any comparably drastic interface changes since. Office should look familiar to anyone who has used any version from Office onwards. Simply put, Word is an attractive, but not a compelling upgrade.

If you’re happy with Office , think twice before spending hard-earned cash on the new version unless you want or need some of the new version’s unique features. Word and Outlook, for example, get a new set of features—called “Learning Tools”—that make it easy to focus on text.

Spreadsheet app Excel gets new functions and charts, including a funnel style and 2D maps, plus enhanced pivot and query tools. New Features Presentation powerhouse PowerPoint gets a Morph transition that shows separate objects moving to new locations from one slide to the next—matching Apple’s Magic Move feature in Keynote.

PowerPoint also gets a Zoom feature that lets you jump to any slide or section in your presentation, without following the traditional linear order—somewhat like the fluid, non-linear presentations pioneered by Prezi , but with a clunkier look and feel. Word, Excel, and PowerPoint can import graphics in the scalable SVG format widely used on the web—and not yet supported by Keynote or Apple’s other office apps.

Office apps can also import—with only a few clicks—3D models from the Microsoft-created Remix 3D community website. A new Insert an Icon item pops up a menu with around five hundred well-designed icons that you can insert in any Word, Excel, or PowerPoint document. They’re all black-and-white by default, but you can change the color from a pop-up menu. Word’s elegant powerful equation editor now supports LaTeX syntax, with a few variations from the standard syntax—and Microsoft has beefed up Office’s online help with complete details of equation syntax and much else, mostly eliminating the frustrations in earlier versions when you clicked on a Help button only to be told that help wasn’t available.

It’s also available from the new Learning Tools section of the View ribbon. The Learning Tools menu includes options to displaying widely spaced text for easy reading as well as text with dots showing between syllables. For the former option, you can display either just the current line, or one or two lines above and below it, with the rest of the text almost invisible. Alternatively, you can change the background color for legibility or invert the colors white text on a black background.

Microsoft Word has always outclassed every other word-processor in its range of view options—including draft, web, and distraction-free reading modes—and the Learning Tools build on this strong foundation. On a Mac, oddly, the Learning Tools require an Office subscription, and aren’t part of the standalone Office product, as they are on Windows.

The same limitation applies to the freeform Zoom presentation feature in PowerPoint. Math-tastic Office has had drawing tools for as long as I can remember, but the version adds ink features that convert mouse- or pencil-drawn scrawls into geometric shapes like circles or triangles, or that convert hand-written formulas into typographic math.

This feature works even with my clumsy attempts to write equations with a trackball, but it’s mostly designed for use with a pencil on a tablet, especially a Microsoft Surface model.

Office enhances digital-pencil support, with pressure- and tilt-sensitivity and the ability to move text by dragging it with a pencil. Cross-Platform Excellence Office is the smoothest, slickest, and most powerful set of office applications ever written, though that doesn’t mean it’s the best for the way you work.

On the plus side, the Office file formats are universal. If you share a Word document or Excel worksheet, anyone can open it on any modern computer, and also on any modern mobile device with the free Office mobile apps installed.

If you use any other office suite—like Apple’s iWork apps, the open-source LibreOffice , or Corel WordPerfect Office —you’ll almost certainly need to export your files in Office formats before sharing them with anyone else.

The same thing applies to online suites like Google Docs. You can share online access to a Google Docs documents by sending a sharing link to anyone, but if you want to share the document itself as a file, you’ll have to download it in Word or some other standard format. Office Strengths Also on Office’s plus side are features and abilities that nothing else can match. Excel handles larger and more complex spreadsheets than any rival.

PowerPoint is the only Windows-based presentation app that comes close to matching Apple’s Keynote in dazzling transitions and other effects. Word’s professional-level features make it easy to limit the find-and-replace feature so that it only finds text formatted with specific fonts or spacing. Word also offers a powerful set of well-integrated drawing tools, so the Windows crowd can use advanced graphics features like the ones that Apple offers with its Pages word-processor for macOS and iOS.

Office Drawbacks As all long-term users know, Office has some negative aspects. For example, if you prefer to choose how to format your documents such as the headings and indentations , instead of letting Word decide, you have to turn off a dozen options hidden in Word’s auto-correct feature. Microsoft Word stores many default settings in its Normal. While advanced users can back up this file and create different versions of it for different purposes, Microsoft doesn’t help you figure out where this file is on your hard drive.

I’m not the only user who has been frustrated by Word’s Master Document feature, which lets you embed separate subdocuments in a container document, while letting you edit the subdocuments as separate files. This feature has a bad history of leaving the contents of subdocuments in a master document instead of keeping them separate.

Word seems to be more reliable with master documents than older versions, but, having been burned in the past, I’m not yet ready to trust this feature when working on a multi-chapter book. Instead of updating the desktop version of OneNote, Office now uses the modern Microsoft Store version of OneNote that comes preinstalled on Windows OneNote for Windows 10 automatically opens OneNote notebooks stored in the cloud, but you still need OneNote if you use notebooks stored on a local PC.

OneNote continues to be a free download from Microsoft. All this applies to Windows only. OneNote on the Mac hasn’t changed except for its regular monthly minor updates. Another new development that will matter to IT departments: Office installs itself through the efficient click-to-run technology familiar from Office , not the traditional full-scale. MSI installer used by most commercial software, including earlier versions of Office.

Office vs. Office If, like most Windows users, you’ve put much of your working life into Office, should you buy or rent—buy Office or subscribe to Office ? Corporate and government offices that frown on sharing data on Microsoft’s servers will choose to buy. However, subscription-based Office is the obvious choice for offices that use Microsoft’s ecosystem for collaboration and sharing and anyone who prefers to keep documents in the cloud.

Office has an optional automatic continuous-save feature for documents stored in the cloud that isn’t available in Office even when you save to Microsoft OneDrive. And, of course, Microsoft lets you edit and collaborate on your cloud-based documents from a desktop machine, mobile device, or web browser. If, like me, you customize your Office apps by creating macros to perform complex, repetitive tasks, you may encounter gotchas like the one that tripped up my Office version of Word a few months ago.

I prefer to use the keyboard-friendly spell-check dialog from older versions of Word instead of the more awkward proofing panel in recent versions. As described on many web postings about this subject, Microsoft made it possible to use the old dialog by default by writing a macro and attaching it to the same key that normally opens the new proofing pane.

For a few months last year, however, a badly designed Office update broke that macro and made it impossible for many users to access the old-style dialog. No one outside Microsoft ever figured out why some users weren’t affected.

A few months later, Microsoft finally seems to have fixed the problem in Office But users with Office never encountered the problem at all, because Office like Office doesn’t get the kind of regular update that can break existing features. That problem made me switch to “perpetual” Office , and now Office , for the Windows machines I use for mission-critical work.

On the Mac, I still use Office because Office for the Mac lacks features built into the subscription-based product, though I don’t see any good reason for the different feature sets in Mac and Windows Office For all its minor faults, Office still towers over all alternatives. Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides is the first choice for anyone who prefers free software and effortless sharing, and for casual users who don’t want to keep their documents in files on a desktop computer.

LibreOffice is feature-rich, open-source, and free, and opens legacy documents in more formats than anything else, but after decades of development, it’s still clumsy-looking and far too prone to crashing to inspire confidence. Apple’s iWork apps which are not sold as a combined suite look dazzling and have unique features like Numbers’ tables that can be moved around on an empty canvas, unlike a traditional worksheet that uses only a single grid.

But iWork has desktop apps only on Macs, and forces you to export documents if you want to share them outside Apple’s ecosystem. Corel WordPerfect , available only for Windows, offers unparalleled precise control over document formatting and is more convenient than Office for specialized purposes like cleaning up documents created by OCR software, but WordPerfect will always be a niche product.

Still the Champion You may complain about this or that corner of Microsoft Office, but it’s still the most comfortable, familiar, powerful, and reliable set of productivity apps on this or any other planet. If you’re happy with Office , you don’t need Office If you’re happy with Office , you only need Office if you want its new features. One way or another, you probably want Office on your desktop, and though the version isn’t an absolutely essential upgrade, that’s only because the last version has held up so well.

Either way, Office is the best office suite you can buy, and it remains an Editors’ Choice. Microsoft Office

Pricing, Versions, and Compatibility

Both versions are excellent, of course, and we’ll go into the pros and cons of each later in this review. Pricing, Versions, and Compatibility As always, Microsoft offers more versions of Office than anyone wants to keep track of. You need Windows 10 bit or bit for the PC version; older Windows versions aren’t supported for Office , although Office will continue to work under Windows 7 until January , when Microsoft stops supporting Windows 7 altogether. Windows 8 support will stop in January

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Office takes you to the next level of productivity. Create presentations, data models, and reports with tools and capabilities like PowerPoint Morph, new. Microsoft Office Professional Plus – software assurance – 1 PC overview and full product specs on CNET. Try Office Home free for one month and create your best work. Office plus Windows 10 is the world’s most complete solution for getting things done—from.

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