Microsoft to launch Office 2021 on October 5

Microsoft Office app icons.   | Photo Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft said on Thursday that the consumer version of Office 2021 will be available on October 5 as the company launched its next perpetual version of Office for commercial and government customers.

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The tech giant did not reveal the new features that will be included in the consumer offering and said that more details will be available later. However, earlier this year, the software maker had previewed the enterprise version of Office for Windows and macOS.

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The commercial perpetual offering will include Dynamic Arrays and XLOOKUP in Excel, dark mode support across multiple apps, and performance improvements in Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint, according to Microsoft.

The Redmond-based company said that the enterprise version is designed for specific scenarios, such as regulated devices that cannot accept feature updates, process control devices on the manufacturing floor, and speciality systems that cannot connect to the internet.

While the commercial version offers performance enhancements and expanded accessibility, it will not include cloud-based capabilities like real-time collaboration and AI-driven automation in Office apps like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, the firm noted.

The perpetual versions of Office are aimed at customers who are still looking for a traditional “one-time purchase” model, over the company’s cloud-based Microsoft 365 subscription service.

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“Some customers aren’t ready to move to the cloud. We remain committed to supporting our customers and these scenarios,” Jared Spataro, CVP, Microsoft 365, said in a blog post.

According to the company, both versions of its productivity suite will be supported for five years, and be available in 32- and 64-bit variants. Microsoft also confirmed that this will not be its “last perpetual release”.

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Printable version | Oct 29, 2021 12:48:24 AM |

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