Microsoft Confirms September 22nd Office 2016 Debut For PCs

Microsoft Office 2016 is just around the corner, the company confirmed this week. The new version of Office will be “broadly available” for systems running Windows on September 22nd, as we expected. Businesses that have volume licenses will need to wait just a little longer for their copies, which will be available at the Volume Licensing Service Center on October 1st. Mac OS X users have been able to pick up the new software since July.

microsoft office roadshow

Microsoft has a new feature for businesses that are updating office. The feature, called Current Branch for Business, offers updates three times a year in an effort to give businesses time to assess updates before they roll out. The first Current Branch for Business update will appear in February 2016, delivering the same Office 2016 version that is arriving to everyone else on September 22nd. The update will also include the security updates that appear between now and February 2016, as well. This system is geared at Office 365 ProPlus customers; if you’re a home user, you’ll be able pick up Office 2016 on September 22nd.

Enterprise customers have been voicing concerns that Office 2016 could throw a wrench in their macros and add-ins, but Microsoft says not to worry. “If you’ve been evaluating the preview, you would have seen that most of the tools and processes for managing and deploying Office 365 ProPlus (15.x) version are very consistent with Office 2016,” Microsoft’s Julia White wrote in a blog post this week. She also pointed to the a guide for updating from Office 365 ProPlus to  Office 2016 and the Office IT Pro Deployment Script project, which collects PowerShell scripts for automating common procedures.

mirosoft office update chart

Not surprisingly, Microsoft plans to promote the heck out of Office 2016 in the coming months. Expect to see Office 2016-related content on Office Mechanics and in the Microsoft Cloud Roadshow.