Office 2021 vs. 2019: Applications and Featuresyoana
Microsoft Office: What is it?
Office is a Microsoft software bundle that includes programs such as Excel, Word, PowerPoint, and the others. You will have access to different applications depending on the Office version you purchase. The functionalities of these applications may vary with each edition, but they remain the same. Below you can see the different bundles of Office:
- Office Home & Student
- Office Home & Business
- Office Standard
- Office Professional
- Office Professional Plus
In the table below you can find what applications are included in each Office bundle.
Office 2019 vs. Office 2021
Office 2019 and Office 2021 are both perpetual licenses, meaning that you only have to pay a one-time fee and both licenses are valid for an indefinite period which makes them suitable for reselling. The main differences between the 2019 and 2021 editions are found in the applications’ functionalities. These differences ensure a intuitive and improved user experience.
What’s new in Office 2021?
Every Office edition has at least some improvements compared to the previous ones. The updates of Office 2021 include minor adjustments regarding visual updates, overall performance and more intuitive use. An example is the search box that simplifies the quick finding information from text to commands.
There are, however, some major improvements, such as new formulas in Excel, improved recording of presentations in PowerPoint and Microsoft Teams integration. In Word you can make use of the function Immersive Reader. Outlook’s new Translation features enables you to communicate easier with people from all around the world. Below you can read more about each Office applications’ adjustments.
Previously, older Office versions did not allow you to work on the same document at the same time. With that, a lot of problems arise between colleagues during projects. The new Office 2021 allows you to work on the document and see each other’s changes in real time. There is no need to send additional notes or emails because when a file is updated, everyone gets notified. Furthermore, when you co-author a document, you now have control over when to send your comments. With the command Ctrl + Enter you can easily post a “modern” comment on a document, presentation or a sheet. This additional feature enables the smooth collaboration and facilitates the productive commenting experience. The modern comments feature is available in Word, PowerPoint and Excel.
The communication application Skype for Business in Office 2021 is now replaced with Microsoft Teams. This means that with Office 2021 Professional Plus you do not have to download it separately. Microsoft Teams is also integrated with the applications, which means you can chat and make calls with Microsoft Teams right from Office.
Microsoft has added a number of useful functions into their Excel’s functions. In Office 2021, you will have a new XMATCH feature that allows you to quickly search for a specified item, and then returns to its relative position. Another addition is dynamic arrays, it enables to receive an array of multiple values with the use of a single formula. With the new function LET you can make complex formula easier to read and understand. Lastly, Microsoft has added is XLOOKUP, it can be used to quickly look up details about a cell that is related to another cell.
With the new and improved Record Slide Show in Office 2021, you will now be able to record your presentation along with the narration, timing adjustment, ink gestures and laser pointer movements. Furthermore, a new Link to a slide feature allows you to ask for assistance from your colleagues on a specific slide. Microsoft has also added Reading Order which improves the reading experience for screen readers. Another feature is Ink Replay, it allows you to replay or rewind animation of the drawing effect in your presentations.
With the latest version of Word, you can improve your reading experience through the Immersive Reader. You can also speed up your writing with Text Predictions, as this feature provides suggestions based on the first few letters that you type. The new Dark Mode enables you to work in a dark canvas. In Office 2019 you could not switch the canvas mode.
Office 2021 has included Translation features into Outlook, which enables you to auto-translate your message so you don’t have to waste time on external language translator. Another new addition to Outlook is the Inking feature. It allows you to annotate email images or to draw in a separate canvas. Lastly, the addition of Instant Searches allows you to quickly find emails and messages anywhere in Outlook.
Office 2021 comes with newly redesigned ribbon tabs and a modernized start experience. With minimal iconography, a neutral colour palette, and softer window corners, you can experience a clear and clean look. Office 2021 is also visually aligned and fully compatible with Windows 11, hence why both software programs were released at the same time. Furthermore, Windows 10 users don’t need to worry because Office 2021 is also completely compatible with this operating system. Another visual addition, that improves the user writing experience in Word, is the Dark canvas. This is an addition to the Dark Mode you can find in Office 2019.
More Stock Images & Icons
Office 2021 has added more images and icons to its collections. This will save you a lot of time to find the right media that fit your needs. However, you will only have access to a portion of the library. To get full access, you will need to subscribe to Microsoft 365.
Office 2019 vs. Office 2021: Compatibility
There are a few requirements that you need to take into account before you decide to buy Office. Fortunately, the requirements are identical for both Office 2019 and Office 2021:
- Windows 10 or newer
- Free desk space: minimum 4 GB
- RAM: minimum 4 GB
- Processor: 1.6 GHz 2-Core
Both editions of the Office can run on Mac, however, you need to make sure that the license you are purchasing is indeed suitable for Mac.
How can I upgrade from Office 2019 to Office 2021?
In principle, it is not possible to automatically upgrade from Office 2019 to Office 2021. You could “upgrade” by purchasing Office 2021. The installation process of Office 2021 is essentially the same as for Office 2019. After the installation you can still log in to your Microsoft account using the same credentials as for the previous license.
- Real-time collaboration with modern comments
- Microsoft Teams instead of Skype for Business
- XLOOKUP in Excel
- Ink Replay and Improved Recording in PowerPoint
- Text predictions and Immersive Reader in Word
- Translation features in Outlook
- Visual updates such as overall design and user experience
- More stock images & icons