Microsoft opens Office 2016 for testing by public

10 Feb 2015


Microsoft has opened up testing for its Office 2016 Consumer Technical Preview for which users can sign up on Microsoft's Connect test, reported. 

They would need to agree to a non-disclosure agreement to get access to the Office 2016 preview. Microsoft is likely to release Office 2016 in the second half of 2015.

Microsoft Office 2016 which looks much like Office 2013 includes a number of UI tweaks as also new features. The company has added its "Tell Me" tool already formed part of Office Online and Office for iPad to the coming version of Windows in Office 2016. 

An automatic image-rotation feature had been added to help users correctly position images in Office documents. A new "black" theme option had also been added for Office users.

A Microsoft spokesperson said in a statement, "Anyone can access the bits under the terms of the NDA. And what people are currently accessing is very early NDA preview."

In a recent development, Microsoft started preview of its touch-friendly versions of Office for Windows 10. The new touch apps can be downloaded free from the Store (beta) app. The apps which include basic editing features are perfect for mouse and keyboard users.

Meanwhile, reported that the productivity suite, a staple of many businesses for creating Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations, was slated to release in the latter half of this year.

On smaller devices, like phones and sub-8-inch tablets, Office 2016 would be available free.

According to commentators, it might take some time for Microsoft to announce all the new Office 2016 features, but right now the notable new features for Office 2016 included a new Tell Me tool to help users get acquainted with Office and an automatic image-rotation feature.

Tell Me which was already available on Office Online and Office for iPad, was headed for Office 2016 for Windows. With Tell Me, users could ask the help assistant how to performed a task in Office.

There was also an automatic image-rotation feature to help users correctly position images in Office documents, the screenshots indicated, as also a new 'black' theme option for Office users (in addition to the current light gray, dark gray and white themes), TechRadar cited ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, as reporting.

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