Microsoft rolls out MacBook Pro Touch Bar support to all Office for Mac suite users

in Mac Software edited February 2017
Following after a brief beta preview, Microsoft is rolling out support for the MacBook Pro Touch Bar to all users of Office for Mac, with the update providing quick access to functions from the new dynamic display panel.

Originally announced less than 12 hours after the MacBook Pro launch, Touch Bar support is being added to all of the main Office apps, according to release notes for the productivity suite. Wider availability of the feature began on Thursday, just eight days after users enrolled in Microsoft's beta testing program were able to try it out for the first time.

For Microsoft Word, MacBook Pro users will gain a "Word Focus" mode, which hides all onscreen ribbons and commands on the main display, to help users focus on their work. Formatting tools are instead displayed on the Touch Bar, keeping them available to use, but not distracting the user.

Powerpoint gains a graphical map that shows all of the slide layers, to make finding individual elements of a presentation easier, as well as graphic rotation tools. In Slideshow View, the Touch Bar displays slide thumbnails and a timer, as well as presentation controls.

The Touch Bar will show recently used functions in Excel, allowing users to quickly select a commonly used formula. Users will also be able to access recommended charts and other spreadsheet formatting tools through the Touch bar.

In Outlook, users will see a list of commonly used commands on the Touch Bar, as well as the ability to perform Skype calls through a single touch. When composing an email, it will display a list of recent documents that can be attached to the message.

Microsoft Office 365 subscriptions start from $69.99 per year for a one-user personal license, or $5 per month per user for businesses.


  • Reply 1 of 4
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,680member
    Microsoft's support for Apple products is the best it's been since Word 5.1

    I hold Microsoft in much higher regard now than I did during the Ballmer years. 
  • Reply 2 of 4
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 5,957member
    blastdoor said:
    Microsoft's support for Apple products is the best it's been since Word 5.1

    I hold Microsoft in much higher regard now than I did during the Ballmer years. 

    I agree with you.  I'm a user on Office365 for the Mac and it's so refreshing for Microsoft to finally pay attention to Mac users instead of trying to shoehorn everybody into its Windows product, of which I am also a user of that (in a virtual machine).

    I presume Ballmer is somewhere throwing chairs when his NBA team messes up.  He's certainly not missed.  I too have a much better opinion of Microsoft now, than in the Gates/Ballmer times.
  • Reply 3 of 4
    Whilst I agree that Microsoft does appear to be paying some attention to Mac users, I find it annoying that the Mac version of Office still lacks some very useful functionality that has been present in the Windows version for some time.  There are even some features that have been removed from Mac Office 2016 that were present in v2011. Specifically I refer to the abiity to customize toolbars and icons in Word / Excel (present in Office 2011),  PowerPivots, and PowerQuery both of which are yet to make it onto the Mac Excel and would be very welcome.    While they are at it, it would be great to see the issue of 64bit ODBC connections from excel to external data sources resloved.
    edited February 2017
  • Reply 4 of 4
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,142member
    Seems like a monster update for a relatively small functionality.  Taking forever to download.
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