How Office 2016 for Mac compares to Office 2011


Office for Mac users have had to wait five years for a new version. So what’s changed between Office 2011 for Mac and Office 2016 for Mac? Well, for starters, it’s been given a lick of paint. Office 2016 looks completely different visually, but the differences run much deeper than that. Here we break down how Office 2016 for Mac improves on what Office 2011 for Mac offered.


Word for Mac: Anyone who collaborates or simply seeks feedback on their documents will be pleased to see the inclusion of threaded comments. This means that you can invite feedback on your work, have a conversation about a change right next to the corresponding text, and filter through this discussion much easier.

Meanwhile, the new Design tab lets you apply consistent themes, including layouts, colours, and fonts throughout your document quickly and easily. Microsoft has touted the new Smart Lookup feature, which draws definitions and internet search results into a pane in the document. This feature isn’t radically different to Office 2011’s floating toolbox.


Excel for Mac: Excel has received a wealth of improvements and new features in Office 2016 for Mac. Any user can make great use of the equation editor, formula builder and improved autocomplete, while the recommended charts feature helps you make sense of it all, complete with chart previews. There’s also the new PivotTable Slicers, which help you delve deeper into your data, letting you pick out important trends or data points.


PowerPoint for Mac: Nobody likes listening to a presentation when the speaker just says exactly what’s on the slide. The new Presenter View shows you speaker notes, the current slide, the next slide, and a timer, so you can keep your presentation tight, flowing, and interesting. Like Word, PowerPoint for Mac also features threaded comments when reviewing, so you can team up on projects. And the inclusion of 23 corporate templates means there’s less fiddling around with the design of a presentation, so you can spend more time on the meat of it.


Outlook for Mac: There aren’t any sweeping changes to be found here, but there are some small and useful additions. There’s push mail support so that your inbox is always up-to-date; improvements to the Calendar feature, including one that lets you view calendars side-by-side; and the ability to set a different signature for new e-mails and replies, meaning that your contact details are present where most pressing without padding mails further down a conversation thread.


OneNote for Mac: This is the newest addition to the Office for Mac package, although it’s been available as a standalone app for free on Mac and iOS. This lets you jot down ideas in a series of digital notebooks and access them later on any device. These notebooks can also be shared with others so everyone can stay informed on plans, give feedback on work, or contribute to group projects.

Author Image

Posts from the Harvey Norman blog team.

You may also like...