Microsoft details what's new in Office 365 to kick off 2014

We're moving into the second month of 2014 and Microsoft has published a new entry on the Office 365 blog, detailing improvements implemented last month for a variety of products and features of the online Office suite. Just in case you managed to miss anything in January. Whether you're a Home Premium subscriber or opted for the Office 365 business package, head past the break to see what's new.

Office 365 Home Premium & University

The Office 365 suite has been available for some time now, launching back in 2012. Aggressively priced for home owners, consumers can pick up the full suite of apps for just $9.99 a month ( This package includes Word, Excel and PowerPoint. It's not a bad deal, especially if you find yourself using any of the applications on a daily basis. Microsoft has made the following alterations:

Share your Office 365 Home Premium – Subscribers can now share their subscription with up to four household members. Each member tied to the account can use any of the available Office installations on their PCs and receive an additional 20GB of SkyDrive storage, not to mention managing their own installations. Previously, it was only the account holder who could actively manage devices associated with the subscription.

Improved Office accessibility – Microsoft has partnered with GW Micro to provide people who are blind or have impaired vision improved access to Microsoft's Office suite. Consumers who have purchased and installed any version of Office 2010 and 2013, both perpetual and subscriptions, are eligible to download a free copy of Windows-Eyes. 

Word Web App improvements – It's now possible to create and edit footnotes and endnotes directly in the Word Web App. Consumers can do things with natural language questions and search through Tell Me and Microsoft has redesigned the ribbon to match changes with other Web Apps. 

OneNote Web App enhancements – Microsoft launched ( to help consumers manage their notebooks across all devices. An improved navigation pane makes it possible to more efficiently switch between sections and pages.

Office 365

Office 365 Business

Business owners haven't been left in the dark. Microsoft added not only the above features to its Office 365 Business package (excluding sharing the subscription), but also some extras:

Outlook Web App People View –​ Microsoft has begun rolling out a new People View in the OWA (Outlook Web App) for business users. It enables you to see the mail from most frequent contacts and automatically refreshes the list based on current conversations.

Lync Mobile for iOS and Windows Phone updated – A recent update to the Lync apps available added the ability to view PowerPoint presentations directly from the smartphone. Windows Phone owners can also make use of voice commands to control the app, making it almost a hands-free experience. 

New Partner Admin Centre – Partners now have a centralised location to view all customers, monitor service health, administer services, help manage and resolve support issues, as well as build their business with trial and subscription offers to send to said customer base.

Finally, the team reiterated that InfoPath 2013 and InfoPath Forms Services will be the last versions of InfoPath. That's not bad for the first month of 2014. We're excited to see what the Office team has planned for the entire year.

Source: Office Blog

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.