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One of the first pieces of software that I always looked to purchase first whenever I got a new PC was Microsoft Office. It’s a standard tool of the trade for any IT professional and entrepreneur. Since high school, I’ve slowly expanded my repertoire of MS Office shortcuts in every one of the apps in the Office suite i.e.. Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.
To this day, I use each of these apps on a daily basis so you can consider myself as bit of a power user. Given this, when I switched over to using a 13″ Apple Mac Book Pro as my main laptop, you can imagine my dismay to find that Microsoft had chosen to use almost a totally different user interface in the Mac version for Office. I believe others that transitioned from Windows to Mac share my sentiment here. The first few days were very frustrating. Even after acquainting myself with the Mac style of Office, I didn’t like the relearning especially as one who expected to move over seamlessly and work as usual immediately. The worst thing was the “Formatting Palette” which contained most of the Word, Excel and PowerPoint format options. It just wasn’t intuitive to locate and use.
Microsoft Strikes Back In 2011
Zoom back to 2011. I’ve been using the Microsoft’s newest version of Office: Mac Office 2011 and I am pleased to report that I’m a lot happier with this version mostly because it aligns a lot closer with Window’s Office. Thank you Microsoft! It looks like that they have realized their mistake with the Formatting Palette and introduced the Ribbon which was built ground up to help users access the most used functionality without having to dig around the UI (my experience with 2008 version). Much better.
What I Like Most about MS Office for Mac 2011
With MS OFfice 2011 for Mac, I like how Microsoft helps users to create professional documents with their new template gallery and integration with SkyDrive which allows you to access your documents anywhere there’s an internet connection. My other big thumbs up goes to the new Full Screen view, which displays your document on a blank background so you can focus solely on finishing your document. This is perfect for people like me who get easily distracted by Twitter and Facebook updates!
So if you’re still stuck with MS Office for Mac 2008 or concerned about the learning time required to use Mac version from the Windows version, I can now say it’s not only safe to upgrade but I highly recommend it!
To make it easier for you, I’ve highlighted the major new enhancements for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook below
What’s New In Word for Mac 2011
- Enhanced Publishing Layout View
- Visual Styles which releases the power of Styles in your document
- Full screen view so you can see the big picture and focus on it
- Layer view allows your to reorder objects easily and quickly
- Save to SkyDrive allows you store and access your work online
- Coauthoring: work with multiple authors on the same document
What’s New In PowerPoint for Mac 2011
- Photo edit means you can add or change colors and remove backgrounds
- Broadcast slide show allows you to broadcast your slides online
- You can also reorder objects in PowerPoint
- Presenter view: perfect your presentation with visual cues
- PowerPoint Web App: Access and share your files anywhere
What’s New In Excel for Mac 2011
- Conditional formatting: enhance tables with icons, data bars and color scales
- Sparklines see trends in your data and the big picture
- Tables: Organize, filter and manage
- Pivot tables: summarize and display your data in different ways
- Visual Basic allows you to program easily across both Macs and PCs
- Excel Web App allows you to access and store your files online for easy online retrieval
What’s New In Outlook for Mac 2011
- Conversations: condense long e-mail threads under a single subject
- Calendar View: view your right in your e-mail
- PST Import: bring your crowd and emails with you
- Unified Inbox: all your messages, all together
- My Day: Manage your schedule and contacts within Outlook
Well done Microsoft, you’ve got a happy Office user again!
Want to try before you buy? Download Mac Office free 30 day trial.Tags: Improvements in MS Office for MAC, mac office, microsoft, Microsoft Australia, Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac, ms office, MS Office 2011, MS Office 2011 for Mac, MS Office for Apple Mac, MS Office Mac