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Microsoft explains why Office 2013 was built with touch in mind

In a new Office Next blog post, Microsoft explains how Office 2013 is the company’s most fast, fluid, and intuitive version of the Office productivity suite and how it was built with touch in mind. While Office 2013 is primarily designed for mouse/keyboard use, it is also touch-friendly.

“When we started planning the next version of Office, it was clear that touch was going to be a big part of how people used Office in the future, and we were excited about the opportunity to add a delightful new dimension to our apps,” Microsoft stated in the official blog post. Microsoft has build new versions of some Office apps, such as OneNote and Lync, to be tailored to the new fast and fluid experience of Windows 8. Microsoft has also rebuilt and touch-enabled the desktop versions of all Office apps, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Publisher. Microsoft designed these apps to be primarily for mouse/keyboard, but now features touch support throughout the experience.

Office 2013 features a Touch Mode in each app that allows for the size of the user interface to be increased. “Touch Mode is automatically turned on for properly configured tablet machines. It increases the size of the QAT, Ribbon tabs, adds spacing around small buttons in the ribbon, increases the height of the status bar, turns on the Outlook touch triage action bar and adds space to expanded folders in Outlook,” Microsoft explains. Numerous elements have been increased in size once in Touch Mode to ensure users have it easy when they try to select or resize objects.

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