Office for Mac Gets a Visual Refresh, Dark Theme

Posted on October 31, 2018 by Mehedi Hassan in Mac and macOS, Office 365 with 4 Comments

Microsoft has started testing a major update for Office on the Mac. More specifically, the company is testing new updates for Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote on the Mac with Office Insiders.

The highlight new feature of the update is the new visual refresh for the apps. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote are all getting a revamped design with the new modern ribbon, as well as updated iconography. Microsoft introduced the new design on Office Online and the Windows counterparts a little while ago, and the updates to Office for Mac aligns the experience with other platforms. The visual refresh makes Office apps much more modern, and the interface itself feels a lot less clunky and cramped than before.

Along with the visual refresh, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on Mac are getting support for macOS Mojave’s Dark Mode. This means if you have the dark mode enabled on macOS Mojave, these apps will automatically adapt to your theme preferences and display the dark mode which isn’t entirely new. There are some nice little UX touches on the dark mode — for example, as noted by Office Product Manager Akshay Bakshi on Twitter, the sun on the pictures icon changes to a moon when the dark mode is enabled:

If you are an Office Insider in the Fast Ring, make sure to grab the latest update, version 181029. The update will likely be available for everyone else in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out for it if you aren’t part of the Office Insider program.

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