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Microsoft Explains How Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook Work With Touch Bar

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Yesterday during its Hello Again event, Apple confirmed that the Microsoft Office suite of apps will be gaining support for Touch Bar on the new MacBook Pro, and now Microsoft has detailed what that will look like for each app. The company said that with Touch Bar support on Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook, it's "continually evolving Office to take advantage of the latest and greatest hardware innovations across the industry."

In Word, users will be able to use "Word Focus Mode," which eliminates the clutter of on-screen ribbons and commands "so you can simply focus on your work." All of the relevant UI is then moved down onto Touch Bar, with classic buttons like copy/paste, bold, italics, underline, list, indent, and more found on Apple's new multi-touch panel.


Microsoft said PowerPoint's addition of Touch Bar support lets users "easily manipulate graphic elements." Buttons like "Reorder Objects" make it easy to find the exact object users are looking for and move it to a new location, thanks to an easy-to-read graphical map of a slide's layers. Object manipulation and slides can also be rotated and tracked by sliding a finger across the Touch Bar.


Excel's Touch Bar integration makes it quicker to write functions into rows of the program. By typing an equals sign into a cell, Excel will immediately pull up the most recently used functions and display them on the Touch Bar. As the company explained, "for example, with a tap (for the formula) and another tap (for a named range) in the Touch Bar, you can quickly sum a range in your spreadsheet." Easy spreadsheet organization is also available through the Touch Bar, with borders, cell colors and recommended charts propagating on the panel.


The last program detailed was Outlook, and Microsoft said that here the Touch Bar will provide "the most commonly used commands" whenever a user is working in its calendar and email programs. This means when composing an email, an add file prompt appears, along with a list of recent documents that users can one-tap to attach as a full attachment or a link. While in Outlook's calendar, users will be able to see their events for the day, and even jump into a Skype for Business video meeting.


Before Apple's event, Microsoft held its own presentation on Wednesday, where it announced a new Surface Book and all-in-one desktop Surface Studio, as well as a "Creators Update" coming to Windows 10. Microsoft's new computers are up for pre-order now, the Surface Book starting at $2,399 and Surface Studio at $2,999, and are expected to ship in November and December, respectively.

Article Link: Microsoft Explains How Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook Work With Touch Bar
 
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Zenithal

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Sep 10, 2009
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It'll be useful for running formulae on macros in Excel, but a lot of the simpler stuff like in Word can be mapped to a key combo.
 
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blackcrayon

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Funny how Microsoft is early out of the gate supporting new Mac hardware with Office... And they also have been impressively on top of their app updates for iOS... But at the same time they run Surface commercials that basically say "Macs are crap! Buy a Surface!" ;)
 
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Pakaku

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Aug 29, 2009
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In Word, users will be able to use "Word Focus Mode," which eliminates the clutter of on-screen ribbons and commands "so you can simply focus on your work."
I don't get it. It doesn't eliminate clutter, it just shoves it downwards. So how does looking at the bar to see what you're touching improve anything?
[doublepost=1477656677][/doublepost]
Funny how Microsoft is early out of the gate supporting new Mac hardware with Office... And they also have been impressively on top of their app updates for iOS... But at the same time they run Surface commercials that basically say "Macs are crap! Buy a Surface!" ;)
"Apple iWork is crap. Buy MSOffice."
 
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cableguy84

macrumors 68000
Sep 7, 2015
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Touch bar is basically to the mac, what the apple watch is to the iphone..... useless
 
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scarecrowmac

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Jun 12, 2011
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Funny how Microsoft is early out of the gate supporting new Mac hardware with Office... And they also have been impressively on top of their app updates for iOS... But at the same time they run Surface commercials that basically say "Macs are crap! Buy a Surface!" ;)

I think it's actually quite smart of them, they're making a yearly subscription out of heaps of macs as well as their own computers.
 
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fortuneteller33

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Mar 20, 2012
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I use the latest version of Microsoft Excel on my Mac for work and it's buggy as F*%k.. I'm surprised Apple used their event and a new device feature to highlight MS Office on a Mac but not iWork? WTF Apple?!
 
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ghostface147

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May 28, 2008
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For someone like me who isn't a complex user in any program, the touch bar seems rather useless.
 
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69Mustang

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Jan 7, 2014
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In between a rock and a hard place
I use the latest version of Microsoft Excel on my Mac for work and it's buggy as F*%k.. I'm surprised Apple used their event and a new device feature to highlight MS Office on a Mac but not iWork? WTF Apple?!
They position the MBP as a business computer, a Pro's computer. Most businesses use...

...the answer is not iWork.:p:D
 
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oneMadRssn

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Sep 8, 2011
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Just having to look down (keyboard) and back to the screen is a step backwards.

Being able to set-up all my frequently used Excel functions and shortcuts on the touch bar, which are otherwise 6 or more clicks away and buried in layers of ribbon menu, will be awesome.
 
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Wrathard

macrumors newbie
Oct 22, 2014
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A lot of useless commands.

I wonder if the normal F keys are present... you know, like F2 to search the formula and F9 to get the values?
 
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fortuneteller33

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Mar 20, 2012
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They position the MBP as a business computer, a Pro's computer. Most businesses use...

...the answer is not iWork.:p:D

The industry and consumers are just sticking to what they're 'used to' and Apple's finally playing along (which contradicts a lot of their core values in my opinion). When instead they should be working to make programs like Numbers even more robust and showcase the value behind their product.

Actually, "The answer" is not MS Office. iWork is by far a superior product to Office in a great deal of ways. Microsoft Office for Mac is pure garbage and half-baked. Just my two cents and personal opinion.
 
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rgeneral

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Dec 2, 2012
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I don't get it. It doesn't eliminate clutter, it just shoves it downwards. So how does looking at the bar to see what you're touching improve anything?
[doublepost=1477656677][/doublepost]
"Apple iWork is crap. Buy MSOffice."
I have always think office should be a separate company. Right now MICROSOFT has a monopoly. But that is just imo.
 
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bruinsrme

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Oct 26, 2008
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c) Press CTRL + C/V/B/I/U etc... without needing to look down from screen or locating and having to move the mouse - unless it is of course a more specific activity.

Invaluable time saving key strokes.
 
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BenTrovato

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Jun 29, 2012
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The whole thing with typing is that it became efficient when you no longer had to look at the keys. Forcing me to look at the keys or touch bar isn't going to speed up my workflow. I don't get it. But it does look cool.
 
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WristyManchego

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Jul 3, 2016
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Apple have created something pretty cool with excellent future possibilities for applications, Microsoft have simply utilised this technology to best suit their applications. I think you're all forgetting that the Touch Bar wasn't designed for number or word crunching applications.
 
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69Mustang

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Jan 7, 2014
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In between a rock and a hard place
The industry and consumers are just sticking to what they're 'used to' and Apple's finally playing along (which contradicts a lot of their core values in my opinion). When instead they should be working to make programs like Numbers even more robust and showcase the value behind their product.

Actually, "The answer" is not MS Office. iWork is by far a superior product to Office in a great deal of ways. Microsoft Office for Mac is pure garbage and half-baked. Just my two cents and personal opinion.
Sorry bud, I don't do fanboy. I was just giving my two cents regarding Apple's inclusion of MS Office in it's presentation. It's a business decision, plain and simple.
 
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i5pro

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Jun 17, 2010
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personally, i think MSFT should just drop support of it....that would kill it since no one else is likely going to support it and it might even direct sales back to their stuff. after seeing ow useless the touchbar really is
 
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2457282

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They position the MBP as a business computer, a Pro's computer. Most businesses use...

...the answer is not iWork.:p:D
To date I would say the following for work,

Word is better than pages
Excel is better than numbers
Outlook is better than mail/calendar
Keynote is better than PowerPoint

For personal use it easier to use iWorks since I don't need the added ms bloat.
 
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