Microsoft releases Office 2021 for Mac preview

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Microsoft is releasing a preview version of Office 2021 for Mac and Office LTSC this week. While Office LTSC (Long-Term Servicing Channel) designed for commercial customers, both versions are persistent versions of Office that do not rely on subscriptions or the cloud. Microsoft announced its plans for Office 2021 in February, and a Windows version – which will not be available in preview – will also be released later this year.

Office 2021 for Mac supports both Apple Silicon and Intel-based Macs and requires a minimum of 4 GB RAM and 10 GB storage space. It is designed as a static release of Office, but there will be monthly updates during the preview that may include new features. Once Office 2021 for Mac is final and released, no new features will be added. Topical include improvements:

  • Line Focus, this feature removes distraction so Word users can move through a document line by line.
  • XLOOKUP, an Excel function that allows you to find things in a table or range by row.
  • Support for dynamic arrays in Excel, which has new functions for dynamic arrays in spreadsheets.
  • Record a slideshow with narration in PowerPoint.

Microsoft’s Office LTSC variant also includes things like dark mode support, accessibility improvements, and the same Dynamic Arrays and XLOOKUP features found in Excel 2021 for Mac. Office 2021 for Windows will include similar features.

If you want to try Office 2021 for Mac, you will need to download the installer from the Microsoft site and a special Volume License Serializer to activate the preview.