But the company has added features to all of the Office applications. Word, for example, will get a new “reading” mode that mimics an e-reader. Users will be able to turn pages and add notes to documents much like they would using Amazon’s Kindle app.
Excel’s upgrade will allow users to see a quick preview of charts and tables without having to go through the steps of creating each one first.
The entire suite of Office software is designed to embrace some of the latest technology trends. By default, the new Office will save users’ documents and settings on Microsoft’s servers. That will allow users to access all their documents and settings regardless of what Office compatible device they are using, from a Windows PC to a Windows phone.
Social networking also will be highlighted. Users will be able to share documents on Facebook or LinkedIn and instantly connect with contacts on Skype while within the Outlook email program. And Microsoft is turning its SharePoint service into something of its own social network, allowing users to post messages, comment on others’ messages and share links or videos.
The new version of Office includes plenty of new and promising features, said Mike Silver, an analyst at Gartner, a technology research firm. But he added that it may struggle to catch on.