Office 365

Your top questions about Office 2016 answered

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Today’s post was written by Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president for the Office Client Applications and Services team.

Editor’s note 11/19/2015:
This post was updated to clarify the system requirements.

Editor’s note 10/15/2015:
This post was updated with information regarding how to upgrade to Office 2016.

We are thrilled to see the positive response for the launch of Office 2016 last week. We’ve received a ton of great feedback and wanted to address some of your top questions:

  1. How do I get Office 2016 for Windows if I’m an Office 365 customer?

As an existing Office 365 subscriber, Office 2016 is immediately available to you, and based upon your plan, you can choose to manually update or wait for the scheduled automatic update. Below are links to instructions to manually update to Office 2016:

  • Office 365 ProPlus (including E3/E4) customers are typically managed by an IT department and they determine when to deploy Office 2016. Please contact your IT department for your company’s specific timeline. Manual updates are available for download by Office 365 administrators. Please see Prepare to update Office 365 ProPlus to the Office 2016 version for more information.
  1. How do I get Office 2016 for Mac?

Office 365 Home, Personal and University customers can browse to your MyAccount page on their Mac, sign in and follow the installation instructions.

If you have Office 365 through your organization, go to

New customers can get Office 2016 for Mac with an Office 365 subscription or as a one-time purchase option at or through your software retailer.

  1. Can I get Office 2016 without an Office 365 subscription?

Yes, one-time purchase options are available for both the Windows and Mac versions of Office 2016 from your software retailer and the Microsoft Store.

  1. When will Volume Licensing customers be able to get Office 2016?

Volume Licensing customers will be able to download Office 2016 from the Volume Licensing Service Center beginning today, and Home Use Program (HUP) customers can install Office 2016 beginning on October 7, 2015. MSDN Subscriptions customers can download Office 2016 now.

5.  Are there system requirements I should be aware of when installing Office 2016?

Yes, Outlook 2016 requires Exchange Server 2010 or later.

Additionally, Office 2013 Click-to-Run standalone applications, including Project and Visio, cannot run on the same device as Office 2016 Click-to-Run applications. We do have a workaround with a generous offer. Please refer to the Special offer for customers with Office 2016 and Office 2013 standalone applications support article.

6.  Can I install a subset of the Office 2016 applications?

No, the ability to selectively install individual applications is not available with Office 2016. The vast majority of customers prefer the full installation of all of the Office apps so they are assured that they have the ability to open, view and edit any document they may need. We will continue to evaluate feedback on this topic.

7.  What features are only available with Office 365?

Some of the features in Outlook 2016 such as Clutter and Office 365 Groups require Office 365 email and calendaring support. GigJam, Planner and Delve are only available to business customers through the Office 365 portal. Some qualifying Office 365 subscriptions also include support for unlimited online meetings, 1TB of cloud storage per user, and team websites. We will also be providing additional updates and new features to Office 365 customers on a monthly basis going forward that will not be available to those who buy Office 2016 as a one-time purchase option.

8.  I have a technical problem. How do I get help?

The best place to start is, where you’ll find information about known issues, top solutions, and how to contact support.

9.  How can I request a new feature?

You can submit your feature request on the new suggestion box service for each application:,,,, and

Thank you again for the incredible response to Office 2016. The team is already hard at work on the first update for Office 365 customers, and we’ll share more information on this blog soon. Please keep sending us your questions, feedback and suggestions—it’s very helpful as we prioritize what you want, so that we can create the best Office experience for you.

  1. #6 Is a bit unreasonable considering Exchange 2007 is only two versions old.

    #7 Is utterly ridiculous, mostly because of #6. I can easily uninstall all Office 2013, except Outlook. However, I cannot uninstall Outlook from Office 2016.

    Where was this questionnaire about how Office users prefer their install? Even if people prefer to install the full Office, NO ONE prefers the option to change and uninstall individual products to be removed.

    At the very least provide a command line option to selectively remove products for advanced users.

    This seems like a VERY poor decision, driven by greed, to get companies to upgrade Exchange. The only thing removing options that every other version of Office has had in the past will do is disappoint and alienate otherwise loyal users.

    • Marc Faerber

      Thanks for your comments Donald.

      Regarding Exchange Server 2007 support for Outlook, the Q&A was written in the context of customers considering Office 2016. I apologize if it seemed as though Outlook 2016 was the reason Exchange 2007 is not supported. While Outlook 2016 functionality does heavily rely on later versions of Exchange, the reason Exchange Server 2007 is no longer supported is because the support lifecycle for Exchange Server 2007 has actually expired (see:

      I think what you’re saying about Outlook versions in your second point is that you would like to install Office 2016 but stick with Outlook 2013 and if that’s the case, the scenario is not supported. Office 2013 and Office 2016 applications cannot exist on the same device.

      I have shared your comments with the teams responsible for Outlook, Exchange and Office.

      • “The scenario is not supported”, really? You guys didn’t foresee that users upgrading to Office 2016 might just be a little miffed that they can’t access their corporate email accounts any more, and you (seemingly deliberately) made it impossible to do so without completely removing the entire Office 2016 suite and reverting to an older version? And please let’s not forget that Exchange 2007 support was WORKING in the beta releases, it wasn’t simply left out as the support lifecycle has expired, it was intentionally excised from the product.

        This is a major, important feature that has been intentionally crippled in what I can only assume is a cynical attempt to force companies to upgrade their Exchange server version, with the biggest losers being end users who are stuck with a product that is not fit for purpose. Well done Microsoft!

  2. The plans for Office 2013/2016 non-Office 365 are absurd.

    Previously, Office 2007 and 2010 would grant the end user THREE licenses for the base price of $149.99 for the “Home and Student” version, which came with the basic 4 programs, Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote.

    In Office 2013, MSFT continued to charge $149.99 for the “Home and Student” version, but instead of granting the end user three licenses, the user is only given ONE. Yes, ONE license for the price of THREE in the past.

    Why this change? Why does MSFT want to force its customers into submission with their “Office 365” plan? It offers NO benefits to me, at all. I don’t need Skype minutes or OneDrive (I use DropBox).

    Also, this line is very troubling: “We will also be providing additional updates and new features to Office 365 customers on a monthly basis going forward that will not be available to those who buy Office 2016 as a one-time purchase option.”
    The fact that MSFT is planning on leaving non-Office 365 users of Office 2016 in the dark in regards to updates, is unethical. I cannot believe that after Windows 8, MSFT can and is STILL shooting themselves in the foot.

    • Marc Faerber

      Hi asdfasdfasd fasdfasdfasdf–Thank you for your comments. We work really hard to adapt our offerings to what customers say they want and what they want now is to have Office across all their devices and to be able to switch between devices and to have common experiences across those devices. They also want efficient and easy ways to work together. These customer scenarios demand a very different offering that what customers wanted when 2007 and 2010 released. The scenarios demand a service and multiple versions of Office that take advantage of the various mobile platforms.

      Office 365 offers home customers five installations on PC/Mac as well as Office on Windows, Adroid, and Apple devices for USD $9.99/month and includes the 1TB of OneDrive space. Dropbox is a great service though I would encourage you to give OneDrive a try. With OneDrive, your files follow you on to any device and even remember where you were in a document. With OneDrive you can use the Office Online and the desktop apps to collaborate on documents with others and you can easily provide permissions to others to view your documents. We hope you will give it a try.

  3. Hi,

    When will the Business Contact Manager add-in for Outlook 2016 be available?

    • Marc Faerber

      Hello Ashish–There are no immediate plans to develop Business Contact Manager for Outlook 2016.

      • Dear Marc,

        Thank you for this answer, but this would mean that we as -Office 365 user- now will have to stick with Outlook 2013 ‘forever’. Business Contact manager uses a local SQL server database were all our shared contact details are stored.

        If Microsoft should have an upgrade/alternative scenario for their existing BCM users I would love to hear it. Ideally there should be a move scenario to some sort of cloud alternative solution.

        @Ahish: please look here for blocking the automatic updates:

        • BCM has been discontinued based on the fact that only a small percentage of people still use it.
          if you are looking for an alternative, the next step up is Dynamics CRM Basic but it has a minimum requirement of 5 licenses.

  4. This blog is tagged with Access as well, but was not listed in Answer 10 above, although the website exist.

    On Windows 10 Feedback App, you can find/send feedback on all Office Apps, Desktop and Mobile, but not Access Web Apps.

    In Office 2016, Access received the minimum new features/improvements, while Access Web Apps received nothing.

    Now what is exactly the plan for Access in Microsoft Plan?

    • Marc Faerber

      Thank you for that Yahya…it was definitely a miss to exclude Improvements to the Access Web apps have been a priority and those customers with Office 365 plan that include SharePoint Online are already able to enjoy them. Those customers that run their own SharePoint Servers will see those improvements ship with SharePoint 2016. See this article for more information:

      • Hi Marc, I am a customer with Office 365 E plan and know about the improvements made to access web apps being using them and they are a drop in the ocean of improvements required. But again, uservoice shall be a place where our comments, ideas and feedback are heard and discussed. Otherwise, its not a uservoice.

        On Office 365 Network at Yammer there is an Access group made by Microsoft, we users are speaking to each other while almost never any of Access team has shown up.

        What is your recommendation for Access user voice to be heard?

  5. Hi Kirk,

    I work in the licensing department for a callcenter, we recently moved to Office 365 but I also have some qestions regarding Office 2016 FPP. I have not purchase such license since I would like to review the EULA unfortunately is not yet available at the Use Term site. I would like to know when or if you guys could help me out with this situation since we are committed to comply and abide by MSFT Use Terms.

    Thanks for your time and attention.

  6. I understand the motivation behind #6, but it is extremely unfortunate. I pay for and manage the Office subscription on my device, and am in full control of the decision there, but the exchange server is owned and managed by my company, which with 70,000 employees, does not have the same motivation as myself to upgrade. The choice regarding Exchange Server is not in my control. This decision has resulted in me being unable to upgrade my suite to 2016, purely because I cannot choose to separate Outlook from the rest of the suite.

    PS 2013 is still a great product, but I really was hoping to run 2016. Am tempted to create a virtual machine for 2016, but that will use one of my 5 licences. I really hope that Outlook for iOS will not have the same exchange server requirements when it upgrades, or I will be forced to abandon it.

  7. I am appalled that I cannot selectively install Office 365 2016 components given the lack of support for Exchange 2007.

    I have had to roll back to Office 2010 and purchase Outlook 2013 to maintain connectivity with Exchange.

    I have now problem with the IOS versions of Office 365 using Exchange 2007, so why cant Outlook 2016 have the same options.

    Microsoft have despite your protestations been decidedly underhand on this one!

  8. I used to be able to share my E3 downloads on multiple computers – now I am getting an error message – I deactivated and re-downloaded and it didn’t help!

    • Marc Faerber

      Hi Jan,
      I would encourage you to contact support as there are likely some questions they will need to ask you before they can correctly assess the situation.

  9. So what does this mean for E1 users? It’s not immediately clear…

    • Marc Faerber

      Hi Paul,
      I’m not sure what specifically you are inquiring about but as E1 doesn’t include the Office apps, Office 2016 doesn’t have much impact on E1 customers.

  10. I need to know as – Is there any way of putting sections in Microsoft Outlook 2013, say a large piece of info to be accommodated within a section as we used to do in Lotus notes, I have recently migrated to MS Outlook 2013.
    Please help!

  11. Hello,

    Just checking on the HUP site, and the 2016 products are not showing as of yet. I called the Telephone help line (which isn’t actually Microsoft) and they had no idea what I was talking about, (or at least no one in the office that I was talking to knew when it would be coming) and hadn’t heard about it. So there must be a break down in communication about the rollout between you (Microsoft) and the company that’s running the HUP website/support. I’ll keep checking throughout the day. It’s a great product, I use it day in and day out, and want to continue using and experience the latest features and benefits of it.



    • Marc Faerber

      Hi Matthew–HUP is scheduled to release today at 5:00 p.m. PT.

  12. When will Office 2016 be available under HUP (Home Use Program) … Any Specific Time.?? Already declared it would be available today, but still not available!

    • Marc Faerber

      Hi Varun–HUP is scheduled to release today at 5:00 p.m. PT.

      • Hi Marc, thanks a lot for the update. Also could you please tell me how can I get two copies of Office 2016 one for Mac and other for Windows… I need both badly for my home PCs. Please help.

        • Marc Faerber

          Hi Varun–We recommend that most customers get Office 365 because it gives them full, installed Office experience on 5 PCs or Macs, 5 tablets and 5 phones (including Windows, Apple, and Android devices). You can find the Office 365 package that’s right for your needs at

          • Sorry Marc, but it’s too costly for a student like me. Even we have to pay a huge subscription charge every year/ month. I just need Office 2016. Please tell me if someone willing to pass his coupon under HUP. Any other way?

          • Marc, it’s too costly to afford annual/ monthly subscription charges for Office 365 for a student like my brother. Would be better to purchase Office 2016 at once. Could you please tell me if someone willing to pass his ticket under HUP even on some higher price???

          • To interject, as far as I know, the HUP only allows you to choose one or the other. but maybe that has changed for the release of 2016? Marc?

          • Marc Faerber

            @Matthew–I’m reading that both PC and Mac versions are available in HUP. It may be that you need to log on with a Mac to see the Mac version. From what I can determine however is that HUP provides you with one license for home use and you will have to choose between PC or Mac.

  13. Great News All! Office 2016 Now Available Under Microsoft HUP. Grab your copies right now!

  14. Will there be a free or reduced cost upgrade option for Volume Licensing customers without active SA on standalone Visio & Project 2013 licenses?

  15. Like many other commenters here, I am disappointed with #6.

    I understand your desire to remove complexity. There seems to be a fad in the industry at present of simplifying and streamlining, and in principle that’s a Good Thing. However, in this case I feel like in their haste to pursue that worthy goal, your the product designers (coders, product managers, etc. responsible for this decision) put on blinders and checked their common sense at the door.

    Don’t mean to sound harsh, but in my opinion you guys need some strong feedback on this.

    e.g. There are perfectly good reasons I may want to ONLY install Outlook, or conversely NOT install Outlook.

  16. I have a Surface. It has limited space. I haven’t needed to access an Access database since 1999. No one has ever sent me a Publisher document.

    There is zero chance pre-installing these will get me to use them. In fact, seeing them waste my resources only makes me think less of Microsoft products. It’s disrespectful and disingenuous to say the vast majority prefer things they’ll never use to take up space.

    This is 2015.

    SSDs aren’t the same as cavernous 1TB HDDs.

  17. When will the OneDrive for Business app for Mac be released? I’d like to see at least an updated preview of it since the initial preview version crashes in OS X 10.11 El Capitan.

  18. Hi,
    No only Access suggestions box is missed. What about the others applications Publisher, Project and Visio

  19. Marc, the listed features are already available in SharePoint online since a year or so. 3 years ago, in an official blog, it was said that Access Web Apps is the future of Access and will be even available for mobile devices. we don’t see that Access Services are given any attention by Microsoft, only nil.
    This product has first been introduced in 2013 hence its new. look at the first release and now, they are not much different, this product needs tons of new features and improvements and we developers were always trying to speak to MS Access team in blogs, forums, O365 yammer network, without success to make our voice heard. pity.

  20. How can we re-enable the Document Information Panel?
    Without this the user experience in combination with SharePoint becomes impressively bad compared with Office 2013.

    We find ourselves in the highly regrettable position of having to advise our SharePoint customers not to plan for an upgrade to Office 2016 for any user involved in processes that capture metadata for documents as they created since the loss of the Document Information Panel means the user experience is somewhere between dreadful and unsupportable.

  21. Hi,
    when will be Czech language for Office availiable? Windows version is localised, so iPad – only Mac version is not. Why?

    Thanks for your answer.


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