Office 365 redesign includes simplified ribbon, will also be available for free Office Online users
Microsoft has announced an Office 365 redesign which brings a new interface for the cloud powered productivity suite. The updates will bring new features too, even before Office 2019 is released.
The main change will be the simplified ribbon interface. The new version is aimed at giving users more screen real estate. Currently the ribbon interface uses three lines of space, but the simplified one will use a single line of space.
There is a drop-down icon on the far right, which can be used to expand the ribbon to display more options. Clicking on it will collapse the ribbon, when you don’t need the options. Basically, the simplified version includes the most commonly used commands, which Microsoft’s research found to be the
It isn’t a huge deal breaker to be honest, but people may be confused if Microsoft introduces the change out of the blue. And that it is exactly why this will be a staged roll out. The Redmond Company says that it will listen to user feedback before bringing the simplified version to all users. And even when the Office 365 redesign arrives, you will be able to switch back to the classic ribbon with a click of the mouse.
The Office 365 redesign will be available for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook apps. The good news is that the free version of Office.com (aka Office Online) users will also get the redesigned UI. Microsoft says that select users who use Word on Office.com will start seeing the redesigned interface today. And Outlook for Windows users who have opted in to the Insider program, will get the new UI in July. We have already been monitoring Office Online for the new UI, but it has not been available yet on our accounts.
Office.com users will get the new icons and some new colors for a crisp view with a modern design, followed by some Office for Windows Insiders, who will see the same on the desktop apps. Microsoft is also introducing better search options for commercial versions of Office apps including Office.com, SharePoint Online, and the Outlook mobile app, from today. Outlook for web commercial users will see these options from August. Even if you just place the cursor in the search field, the box will recommend searches using its A.I. and Microsoft Graph.
Microsoft calls this new design the “Fluent Design”, a way to provide users with more context and control over the apps which are available in Office 365.