Microsoft finally lets users react to comments in Word for Windows

Kevin Okemwa

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If you’ve collaborated on projects with several users on Microsoft Word, then you know how hard it gets at times to respond to all the comments. And while most comments are usually important and require a response, some comments don’t really need a response. Instead, a reaction would suffice.

Microsoft is now making this possible for Word for Windows users. Just like email reactions in Outlook, users can now like comments in Word to enhance collaboration and productivity in Word.

Animation showing liking a comment in a Word for Windows document


And while the Like button in Word is designed to make it easier for users to collaborate on projects and give quick responses, it should be noted that it comes with limitations. For instance, if a document is in read-only mode, you won’t be able to make use of the feature as the Like button won’t be visible.

Additionally, the feature also ships with two known issues. First, the feature will not be available to Android and iOS users. Therefore, they’ll not be able to view comment reactions. Microsoft has also indicated that there might be instances where users might not be able to use comment reactions, especially while editing older documents. Though this doesn’t apply to newer comments added to the document, the feature should work properly.

The feature ships with a dedicated keyboard shortcut, as illustrated below:

  • To react to a comment without using your mouse, navigate to the text in the document with an associated comment and press Alt+F12. From there, press the Tab key to select the Like button. You can press Enter or Spacebar to click the Like button, and then press the Alt+Down arrow keys to expand the user list. Move through the list using the Up and Down arrow keys. The Esc or Alt  keys can be used to dismiss the list.

The feature is now available to all Word for the web users and Beta Channel users and is currently rolling out to Current Channel users in preview. You must be running on version 2305 (Build 16501.20152) or later to access it. The feature will also be rolling out to Mac users in the next couple of weeks.