Microsoft releases Office 2021 for Mac preview

Technology


Microsoft is releasing a preview version of Office 2021 for Mac and Office LTSC this week. While Office LTSC (Long-Term Servicing Channel) is designed for commercial customers, both versions are perpetual versions of Office that don’t rely on subscriptions or the cloud. Microsoft announced its plans for Office 2021 back in February, and a Windows version — which won’t be available in preview — will also be released later this year.

Office 2021 for Mac will support both Apple Silicon and Intel-based Macs, and require at least 4GB of RAM and 10GB of storage space. It’s designed to be a static release of Office, but during the preview there will be monthly updates that could include new features. Once Office 2021 for Mac is final and released, no new features will be added. Current improvements include:

  • Line Focus, this feature removes distractions to let Word users move through a document line by line.
  • XLOOKUP, an Excel feature that lets you find things in a table or range by row.
  • Dynamic array support in Excel, which has new functions for dynamic arrays in spreadsheets.
  • Record a slide show with narration in PowerPoint.

Microsoft’s Office LTSC variant will also include things like dark mode support, accessibility improvements, and the same Dynamic Arrays and XLOOKUP features found in Excel 2021 for Mac. Office 2021 for Windows will include similar features.

If you’re interested in trying out Office 2021 for Mac, you’ll need to download the installer from Microsoft’s site and a special Volume License Serializer to activate the preview.



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