Microsoft Likely to Release Office 2016 Later This Year
NEWS ANALYSIS: The next version of Microsoft Office will deliver some new features when it's released in the second half of 2015, but details are still sketchy.
Microsoft will release the next full version of Microsoft Office in the second half of 2015, according to a blog entry by Julia White, general manager of product marketing for Office and who is also part of the Office 365 team. This release keeps to Microsoft's practice of issuing a new version of Office every three years, with the most recent being Office 2013. This new version, which as you'd expect will be called Office 2016, is designed specifically for computers with a mouse and keyboard. Both the Windows and MacOS versions of the product will have the same name and are expected to be released around the same time. Office remains an important product for enterprises since the vast majority of enterprise computers run major portions of Office, including Outlook, Word and PowerPoint, even if they don't fully implement the full suite of content creation tools. It's not clear at this point whether the fact that the announcement came from the Office 365 team was significant. Currently, Office subscribers get a version of Office 2013 that's continually updated. The practice in the past has been that Office 365 users get the new version and new features as they're released, so it seems likely that Office 2016 will reach subscription users in the same way.
What Microsoft isn't saying is whether Office 365 will be the primary released edition. Currently, the perpetually licensed version of Office 2013 (or earlier versions) is what is in place at most companies.