Microsoft Rebrands Office Web Apps as Office Online, Improves Visibility So You Can Actually Find It

Microsoft Office OnlineDid you know there were free online versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote that you could use?

Yes, there are. Although you shouldn’t feel bad if you didn’t know they existed.

A lot of users weren’t aware of the online versions of popular Office applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote given the poor name choice  & low UI visibility.

Microsoft admits that users were often thrown off by the word “Apps” in the name “Office Web Apps” as it gave them the impression that they needed to download or install something, & not that the services were web-based. The fact that web versions were rather difficult to find definitely didn’t help matters, either, but thankfully Microsoft has taken steps to change all that.

To help simplify things, Microsoft has changed the questionable “Office Web Apps” name to a more straight-forward “Office Online” and made the web versions a whole lot easier to find.

Users can access the free online versions of Office applications – Word Online, Excel Online, PowerPoint Online, & OneNote Online – by going to Office.com. The four Office Online apps have also been added to the drop-down menus in Outlook.com and OneDrive.com.

Anyone with a Microsoft Account can use Office Online and all of your files are automatically saved to OneDrive, allowing you to easily access them on any internet-enabled PC or device.

You can learn more about Office Online, including how it interacts with existing desktop applications, on the Microsoft Office Blog.

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