The leading office suite in the world is Microsoft Office. Since its inception, Microsoft Office has been the leading office suite for home, students, and business. With over 1.5 billion users worldwide, Microsoft Office is the most widely-used productivity suite worldwide. In 1989, Microsoft released the first official version of its powerful office productivity suite for Mac, giving Mac users access to the same the power of Microsoft Office that Windows users have. Office for Mac features the same powerful apps and tools for Mac users as it does for PC users. Microsoft Office for Mac features office flagship products like Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, Excel, Access, OneNote, and Outlook (not available since 2001), Office for Mac allows business users, students, and home users to experience a boost in productivity and the ability to get more done. In this Office for Mac buyer’s guide, we will highlight Office for Mac and tell you what you need to know to make an informed buying decision when you’re ready to buy Office for Mac Home and Student edition.

Apps in Microsoft Office for
Mac Home and Student

Office Home and Student for Mac is designed with the casual home user and student in mind. The great news about Office for Mac Home and Student is that it offers users a range of powerful apps that allow them to create professional documents, stunning presentations, and complex spreadsheets for home use or for school. Home users and students have different needs than a business or corporation looking for advanced productivity tools and apps. Microsoft offers offers this edition of Mac designed specifically to fit your needs those needs. Home and Student Office for Mac brings users Word for creating professional word processing documents, Excel for compiling detail-driven spreadsheets, and Powerpoint for creating professional visual presentations that bring ideas to life. It also includes OneNote, which allows you to elevate your note taking to another level by letting you compile notes, web links, video links, and audio links all in one place.

Microsoft Word for Home and Student

Word is the most popular word processing software in the world. The Mac version of Word gives Mac users the same power, flexibility, and productivity Windows users have known about for decades. With Word for Mac, Apple users can take advantage of all the word-processing power Word has to offer. With Word for Mac, you can create, polish, and share professional documents with anyone in the world. Word offers state of the art authoring tools to help you work smarter and with more efficiency than ever before. A new Insights pane shows relevant contextual information from the web right inside Word. There’s a new Design tab that helps you accomplish more by making it easier to manage layout, colors, and fonts across an entire document. Work with others, regardless of operating system, using tools for sharing and reviewing documents. Numerous people can work on the same document simultaneously and use the threaded comments feature to carry on a conversation or brainstorm right beside relevant text. Now if you are working on a school paper with classmates or collaborating with someone else, the latest version of Microsoft Word for Mac brings you all the tools you need to accomplish tasks easily.

Microsoft Word for Mac includes Smart Lookup, which provides contextually relevant information for any highlighted text, allowing you to access web-based data. For instance, if you highlight the word "Microsoft" within your document, right click the word, then select “Smart Lookup,” Word will open a window containing Bing search results. This search returns a summary of Microsoft, Microsoft’s Wikipedia page, and Microsoft’s official website in the search results. You can even access Smart Lookup on the Tools menu as well.

Multiple team members can create and edit a single new Word document at the same time, and when a user working on a file saves changes to a document, a notification highlighting the changes appears to notify other users of the changes. The threaded comments allow collaborators and reviewers to discuss documents during the collaboration process in real time.

Microsoft Excel for Home and Student

Excel is Microsoft Office’s powerful spreadsheet, available to Mac users with all the same great features. There’s a lot of new features in Excel for Mac 2016 that will have Mac users happy. One of those new features in Excel is that now Excel recognizes most Windows keyboard shortcuts. That doesn’t mean abandoning Mac Excel shortcuts, though, because Excel for Mac still recognizes them. Regular spreadsheet users will be happy that Excel now has many of the features from the Windows version of Excel like slicers to pivot tables.

Slicers let you create buttons that make it easy to filter data in a pivot table report, without the need for drop-down lists. There are also many statistical functions added, such as moving averages and exponential smoothing. All of these additional features are designed to make Excel more powerful, efficient, and easier to use. Mac users will love having the same capabilities available to them in Excel as Windows users have had for some time.

Microsoft PowerPoint for Home and Student

If you want to create stunning, professional presentations, there’s no better way to create them than with Microsoft PowerPoint for Mac. Mac users have a new PowerPoint that brings all the best features of PowerPoint to Mac. The new Presenter view is a great addition. Presenter lets you project a presentation and while the audience sees the current slide, you can view your notes, the next slide, and a timer. This allows you to manage the presentation and stay on top of where you’re at and how the presentation is going.

If you want to create stunning, professional presentations, there’s no better way to create them than with Microsoft PowerPoint for Mac. Mac users have a new PowerPoint that brings all the best features of PowerPoint to Mac. The new Presenter view is a great addition. Presenter lets you project a presentation and while the audience sees the current slide, you can view your notes, the next slide, and a timer. This allows you to manage the presentation and stay on top of where you’re at and how the presentation is going.

Microsoft Home and Student User
Experience

Mac users have long felt like they were overlooked by Microsoft, and only with the release of Mac for Office Home and Student 2011 did they begin to see some of the changes they had wanted. The latest version of Office for Mac, 2016, finally gives Mac users a lot of what they have been asking for. The interface is redesigned and more user friendly, and the functionality of the Windows version of Office is finally making its way to the table for Mac users. The Ribbon feature, which was present in 2011, has been revised and made more effective. It can also be hidden away in the latest version of Office for Mac Home and Student.

The Bottom Line on Office for
Mac Home and Student

Overall, Mac users are happy with the direction the latest version of Office is going, although there are some minor complaints. If you’re looking for the most powerful and reliable office suite for Mac, this Office for Mac Home and Student buyer’s guide recommends the latest version of Office for Mac Home and Student 2016. Additional features in the latest version:

  • Word 2016, Excel 2016, PowerPoint 2016, and OneNote 2016.
  • New themes that allow you to let you choose a personalized Office experience. High contrast themes that are easier on the eyes or colorful modern themes consistent across devices.
  • Enhance your reading experience with Insights, powered by Bing, that will show you relevant information from the web for any file.
  • Do more with Word: open and edit a PDF file, watch an online video watch without leaving your document, or take advantage of Read Mode for distraction-free viewing on any screen.
  • Excel templates do most of the setup and design for you, allowing you to focus more on the information you need to get into the spreadsheet.
  • Create incredible presentations with the new alignment, color-matching, and other design tools in PowerPoint. Share your work to the web quickly.
  • Draw, handwrite, type, click, or swipe notes in OneNote.Multimedia notes are saved and are searchable, plus they are synced to OneNote apps on your other devices.

There really is no better way to work, and despite some of the beefs Mac users have had about Microsoft Office for Mac, it still remains the go-to choice for an office suite for many Mac users. Microsoft does seem to be taking Mac users into account, even if it isn’t at the pace Mac users would like. The improvements in the latest version of Office for Mac highlighted in this Office for Mac buyer’s guide are extensive and are beginning to allow Mac users to experience the full power of Microsoft’s popular office applications.

Is it fully there yet? Not quite, but the latest version is a step in the right direction, and it seems that Microsoft is finally taking Mac users serious. This is good news, and it seems the approach by Microsoft is here to stay. If you’re looking for a serious office app that lets you work well with other, regardless of the OS, Office for Mac is still the best choice. There are other office app options for mac, but none of them afford the freedom and power that Microsoft Office does. That’s what keeps so many Mac users coming back.