Today, you’ll notice something new about and Office Web Apps–now officially called Office Online.  An online version of the Office you know and trust has been available for quite a while, but with today’s updates, we’ve made your Office Online experience easier to find, share and collaborate with others.

Sure, some of you are already using the online versions of Office. And with the recent addition of real-time co-authoring and more of the most commonly used features coming online over the last several months, we hear that you’re liking it. But we also know that many of the one billion Office users haven’t tried it yet and we want to change that.

New name, new getting started experience

Today we are making two changes. First, we’re renaming Office Web Apps to Office Online so you know where to find our free online experience. We heard from customers that the inclusion of Apps in our name was confusing. Are they something I install? Do I go to an app store to get them? No, to use them all you need is a web browser. Ah! You say. So it’s like Office, online. Yes, exactly. Office Online.

Secondly, a lot of you don’t know that we have an online version of Office because you just couldn’t find it. If you’re already using Office Online on OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) or on SharePoint at work, great. We’re glad you found it there. You can still use Office Online just like you always have. But we’re making it easier to find for the rest of you by introducing, a discoverable and shareable web page so that you can start using Office Online right away.

Get started with Office Online at

Get started with Office Online at

Go to to start using Word Online, Excel Online, PowerPoint Online and OneNote Online today. All you need to get started is a Microsoft Account (available with any email address) and once you log in, you can use these free online versions of the Office applications you know and trust. Your files are automatically saved to OneDrive, so you can share them with others and  work together on documents, presentations, spreadsheets and notebooks in real-time.

Not only are we making it easier to find, share and collaborate using Office Online, we’re making it easier to create great looking documents. The new online experience includes hundreds of Word, PowerPoint and Excel templates so you can go from nothing to something with just a click. Budgets, resumes, calendars and more, all available online, for free at

Templates for Excel

Templates for Excel

Need more help getting started with Office Online? This article and video should help.

Collaborating with Office and Office Online

What about you folks out there already using Office desktop applications? You might wonder what Office Online means to you. We think you should go ahead and give Office Online a try, especially if you are a person that works with other people on Office documents, presentations and spreadsheets. With Office Online, you can dynamically collaborate in real-time. You’ll see where your co-authors are working in the document, and see their changes as they happen. And here’s the best part. You can also work at the same time with your classmates and colleagues using your Office desktop applications, too.

Simply click on the “Open in Word” button from the ribbon. If you have Office 2010 or 2013 installed, your application launches and you’re now editing the same cloud-based document with all the features available in your desktop applications where you can work online and offline and save your files locally.  When collaborating with Office you get the full power of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote on your desktop AND the collaborative power of the online versions of the same applications, so working together with Office is the easy choice. See how others are using Office and Office Online to work better together.


A more connected Microsoft experience

And finally, with this release you’ll find a more cohesive Microsoft experience, making it easier to share and work together online with Office, OneDrive and  Word Online, Excel Online, PowerPoint Online and OneNote Online are now included in an app switcher which lets you easily switch between email, storage and the files that you are working on without having to navigate in and out of our online services.

Simply choose from the dropdown in the upper left hand corner to access the service you need. A new browser tab will open up for you, and now you can move back and forth effortlessly across the Microsoft tools you use to get things done.

App Switcher in Office Online

App Switcher in Office Online

Now, go to

Whether you have Office or not, today it’s easier than ever to work together on your documents, presentations, spreadsheets and notebooks. Go to to get started.

Category: How to do; News; Servers
Published: 2/21/2014 21:45