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Word Online catching up with Word 2013, at least in some areas

Mary Branscombe | Dec. 11, 2014
The free Office Online applications still have only a fraction of the capabilities in Office 2013, but an update this week adds some welcome new features -- some of which are actually ahead of the client versions.

The Office Online team has added one specific command that it saw a lot of people searching for in Tell Me (even though the information is already shown in the status bar) — word count. And as usual, you can type not just the name of the command but a phrase like how many words to get the answer.

Tell Me also now covers commands in drop-down menus and dialog boxes, like those for changing page size or setting line spacing, as well as the commands on the ribbon. If you type in line space or size A4, the commands you need show up directly on the Tell Me menu, plus youll see the Line Spacing and Page Size menus so you can click through for more details in the usual command interface. If you type in something that isnt a command, Word Online offers to show you the Insights results for what you typed, instead of just telling you there are no matching commands.

Extending the Tell Me system means Microsoft can continue to add more features to the Office Online tools without users complaining that its hard to find them.

 

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