The default is now a scaled-down ribbon with only the most commonly-used tasks shown as buttons on a single line.
Over the coming months, Microsoft will begin rolling out changes to the interface of Outlook, Word, Excel and PowerPoint for Office 365 and Office Online (Office.com) users. And while the new design is meant to focus on simplicity, you'll still be able to expand the ribbon to the classic three-line view. Microsoft will roll out this experience to the web version of Word first and will start to roll out to select consumer users today on Office.com.
Finally, Microsoft is looking to make search more efficient. The tech giant assures, however, that you can still go back to the old ribbon after the new one arrives on those applications. It's launching a new feature it calls "zero query search", which surfaces AI-powered recommendations as soon as you place your cursor in the search box.
To ensure they get it right, Microsoft developed three guiding principles to "use as a north star" that'll include direct customer feedback, understanding the context you're working in and controlling the experience. And almost two months later, the company is back with another important announcement about the Office 2019. In July, they will be available on Outlook for Windows, and in August they rolling out to Outlook for Mac. "People will notice search is now a much more important element of the user experience, providing access to commands, content and people".
Word for Office.com will be the first app to feature the new colors and icons, followed by Word, Excel and PowerPoint for Windows sometime in June for some Office Insiders and Outlook for Windows users in July. This further cements the subscription-versus-perpetual license split that the company has already been exploiting over the last few years: Office 365 subscribers get a trickle of new features each month to their desktop applications; perpetually licensed customers don't.