When Will Office 2011 for Mac Be Replaced?
12th November 2014
If you are a Mac user you will have probably been wondering the same thing since Office (for Windows) 2013 was released. Over the years Office for Mac has tended to follow the Windows release the following year, but time is fast running out in 2014!
If you are a business user this is not the end of the bad news – there is no sync client for OneDrive for Business available for Mac users. There are ways around it, but this is nothing like as straightforward as it should be. At Halchax we have kept a very close eye on this in particular, and Microsoft have been very vague about when the sync client will arrive. We are told to expect it by the end of 2014… but we are not holding our breath!
On a brighter note though, Microsoft has continued to release updates for Office 2011 to give it some of the functionality available as part of their cloud based systems (OneDrive, SharePoint etc), but this is far from as smooth an experience as using the Windows equivalent.
Microsoft has also released a new version of Outlook for Office 365. It looks the same as Outlook 2013, but does not have the same ease of use. If we were being cynical we would suggest that this is little more than a facelift to make it look like Outlook 2013 - although there are, we assume, a number of changes under the bonnet as well.
So, back to our original question – when will Office for Mac 2011 be replaced? Not in 2014, that is for sure! Latest reports do suggest we will see something in the first half of 2015, but this might be beta testing only with the finished product going on general release in the second half of 2015 (although this might be put back to 2016 to coincide with the next release of Office for Windows).
In the mean time, Office 2011 for Mac does everything it needs to do – especially as part of Office 365, and does it well – just not as well as Office 2013! Additionally, you can always have access to the latest web based apps – they are the same across all the platforms!
Check back with us for news on this – with Mac using customers (& staff) it is something we are keeping a very close eye on!
11th February 2015
Well, they didn't quite get the OneDrive for Business Mac Sync Client released by the end of 2014, but at least the beta testing version is now with us!
First impressions are that for OneDrive it works (with the same limitations as the PC version), but it is not yet capable of syncing SharePoint libraries. It is apparently possible to alter config files to achieve this - but for now our advice would be to sit tight and hope the functionality is there in the full release.
If the Office 365 roadmap is to be believed there are some great changes on the horizon for both PC and Mac users.
10th March 2015
Another step forward - the long awaited replacement for Office for Mac 2011 is now available to preview.
Office for Mac 2016 should be available in the second half of 2015, but in the mean time the preview is available, and will be updated as more and more functionality is developed.
You can download the latest preview from Microsoft's Product Pages.
If this is what you have been waiting for, and now want to make the switch to Office 365 please contact us for a free consultation.
15th February 2016
Well, Microsoft finally delivered - Office for Mac 2016 has been quite a hit, and what's more, the next generation OneDrive Sync Client is also available, removing many of the restrictions and niggles of the old Sync Client. There are still some restrictions though, which are due to be addressed over the coming year.
So that's it, Office for Mac 2011 has finally been replaced and overall, whether you are a PC or Mac user, Office 2016 and the 'Next Generation Sync Client' have been a really positive step forward.
Keep in touch with us for news of new features as/when they are released and of course feel free to contact us if you would like to know more.