Office 2016 for Mac Released -­ What Mac Owners Need To Know


UPDATE 8/3/2015: EndNote Cite While You Write (CWYW) is not currently compatible with Office 2016 for Mac. Details. Workaround.

On July 9. 2015, Microsoft released Office 2016 for Mac – the first major Microsoft release for OS X in years. The software is now available to Office 365 subscribers – including Northeastern students, faculty and staff – for download through the Office 365 portal. This new version Microsoft Office is only available for computers running OS X Yosemite (10.10), and the software must be manually downloaded and installed.

What is different?

Office 2016 for Mac includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and, for the first time, OneNote. The overall look and feel matches Microsoft Office 2013 products, bringing it more in line with the Windows, mobile and web-based experience of these applications. If you have been using Office on these other platforms, the experience will be very similar. Like Office 2013 and other Office 365 products, Office 2016 for Mac can be cloud-connected. This new version is intended to pair with the web-based and mobile applications, allowing for seamless document editing on any computer or device.

Should I upgrade now? The ITS perspective

Since Office 2016 for Mac has just been released, ITS has not yet had the opportunity to test its compatibility with all of Northeastern’s networks, applications and systems. Currently ITS cannot guarantee that those who upgrade will have a seamless transition. ITS will provide further information once our testing and analysis is complete.

  • Faculty and staff on Northeastern-managed Macs – The majority of Northeastern-managed Macs run OS X 10.8 and 10.9, and these operating systems are not compatible with Office 2016 for Mac, so this software will not run on those computers. At this time, Microsoft has not released the enterprise version of Office 2016 for Mac, which is required for ITS to install the suite on Northeastern-managed Macs. Once the enterprise version is released, we will begin work on including Office 2016 for Mac in a future OS X Yosemite (10.10) Mac image configuration.
  • Unmanaged Northeastern-owned Macs and personal Macs – As with any new software release, there will likely be issues identified and addressed by Microsoft over the coming weeks. It is always a good idea to weigh being an early adopter of a new technology with the risk inherent in any software upgrade.

Downloading Office 2016 for Mac

If you do choose to upgrade, please note that while the Service Desk staff will always try its best to be of assistance with issues that may arise, this software is not currently supported by ITS. To download the software, please follow the directions posted here on our site:

NOTE: You will only see Office 2016 for Mac if you are accessing the portal on a computer running OS X Yosemite (10.10); if you are on an earlier version of OS X, you will see Office for Mac 2011.

Learn more

For more information about Office 2016 for Mac, please visit Microsoft’s blog post. You can also explore the new course “Office for Mac 2016 New Features”. Log in to through with your myNEU username and password, then search for the course title. Microsoft has posted Office training and tutorials and the Office 2016 for Mac Quick Start Guides.

Related articles:

Ars Technica – A quick hands-on with Office 2016 for Mac
Gizmodo – Office 2016 for Mac Now Works Just As Well as It Does on Windows
ZDNet – Microsoft makes Office 2016 for Mac available, first for Office 365 users

Training – Get The Most Out of Office 365

With the completion of the migration of all faculty and staff email to Office 365, ITS Training would like to point out some new web features that you should take full advantage of to make your work life easier.

For instance, in the Outlook Web App you can:

  • Set your Out of Office message if you didn’t remember to do so in your Outlook software
  • Forward your Northeastern email to any other address
  • Easily search your mailbox by keyword or person

To get all the tips and tricks on these features and more, register for the Outlook/Office 365 workshop through the ITS Training registration site.

Once you’re there, also check out the full calendar of many other training classes for everyone. If your area is looking for a training workshop just for your department (even something customized), or you have an idea for a class, ITS Training ( would love to hear from you.

Student Advantage = Free Microsoft Office

As announced over the summer, students can now get the entire Microsoft Office suite for FREE during their time here at Northeastern.

Under the Student Advantage program, Northeastern is offering all active students the chance to download the latest version of Microsoft Office – currently Office 2013 for Windows and Office 2011 for Mac. This program provides Office 365 ProPlus to students, and allows you to install the full suite of applications on up to five computers AND on up to five devices.

There’s more to come – by December 2014, Northeastern will roll out additional Office 365 features, including OneDrive for Business, an online file storage service with 1 TB of storage space, and the full mobile experience.

So how do you get it?
It is right on the myNEU portal. Just log in with your myNEU username and password, go to Self-Service, and look for the Microsoft Student Advantage section. That will have the link to the Office 365 portal where you can download the latest version of Microsoft Office for your computer (the Microsoft portal auto-detects your operating system).

Full download instructions are available here.

student mac
Microsoft Office ProPlus – Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac
student win
Microsoft Office ProPlus – Microsoft Office 2013 for Windows

As the name says, Office 365 ProPlus through the Student Advantage program is tied to your status as an active student. This means a couple things:

  1. When you install any copy of Office downloaded through the Student Advantage portal, you will be prompted to log in to Office 365. This requires a slightly different username than what you’re used to – you’ll still use your myNEU password, but your Office 365 username is [myNEU username] For example, if your myNEU username is kinghusky, your Office 365 username is only need to use this username for Office 365 applications and services.
  2. Free is not forever. Once installed, Office will prompt you every 30 days to authenticate that you are still an active student. Use that same Office 365 username and your myNEU password. When you are no longer in our system as an active student, whether you have graduated or withdrawn, Office 365 ProPlus will no longer work. Students are given a 30 day grace period before their Office 365 account no longer exists.

What do I get?

Office 2013 (Windows)

  • Word 2013
  • Excel 2013
  • PowerPoint 2013
  • OneNote 2013
  • Access 2013
  • Publisher 2013
  • Outlook 2013
  • Lync 2013
  • InfoPath 2013

Office 2011 (Mac)

  • Word 2011
  • Excel 2011
  • PowerPoint 2011
  • Outlook 2011

Now, many of you are probably thinking: Wait, I already paid for Office…

If you already own Office, that’s great! Again, Office 365 ProPlus is tied to your active student status versus any version you already own, which is yours to keep whether you are at Northeastern or not. While you are at the university, though, if you download the Student Advantage version, you’ll have the latest version of Office, and then in a few months you will also get OneDrive for Business and the mobile apps. Don’t worry, Office 365 ProPlus will not overwrite any previous versions.

For more information, check out the Microsoft Student Advantage – Office 365 ProPlus page. And the ITS Service Desk is always available, 24/7, and can be reached by either e-mail at or by phone at 617.373.4357 (xHELP).