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4.2 out of 5 stars39
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Office Mac home and business 2011 is an incremental upgrade to the Office 2008, with one crucial difference: Outlook is included, and it actually works.

I've been using Microsoft Office since 1990 on MS-DOS, Windows and Macs, and, from memory, this is my tenth different version. Fundamentally it still does the things it was good at in 1990, but it has added on many peripheral tools. I doubt that anyone uses all of them.

When Macs went to OS X, Microsoft did not release an OS X version of the Exchange client. For a while we continued to use the OS9 version, but after a point OS X no longer supported OS9 applications. In previous editions of Office, Microsoft has included Entourage, designed as a Mac equivalent to Outlook. Entourage was fine as a replacement for Mail and iCal, if you wanted one, but, crucially, it never managed for me to connect to work-based Exchange servers. In fact, Apple Mail and Calendar worked, but MS's own product didn't.

In addition to an interface makeover, a handful of newer functions, access to MS online services and, Visual Basic, Office Business Edition now comes with Outlook. It connected painlessly to our Exchange servers, and allows me to give delegate access, which Exchange for Web doesn't and neither -- for our server -- would Apple Calendar.

If Exchange is important to you, this is worth the price of the new version, and also worth the price difference between this and the Home and Student edition, which doesn't offer Exchange.

The other new features -- and many of the old features -- are take-it-or-leave-it. The ability to edit pictures and diagrams is ok, but not as good as proper Mac software like OmniGraffle which does this in a dedicated fashion. Visual Basic is useful if you like to do your own programming. It's at least good to see it back, as it was dropped a couple of versions ago.

All in all, this is the first version for some time which really offers the same functionality (minus Access and Publisher) that the Windows version offers. It is also -- according to Microsoft -- the last version to be offered on a purchase basis, as, in common with adobe, MS has now moved to a subscription basis.
11 comment|24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 5 September 2014
I only gave four stars because both the picture and the description are misleading the picture shows a box that looks as if it contains a disk, in fact when it arrived the box is only the size of a cigarette box and there is no disk. Also in the description of system requirements it states that a CD drive is require. I realise now that this is for the more expensive CD biased product but the fact that the two are offered on the same page is in my view confusing.

Further more the "also bought" suggestions recommends you buy a Superdrive, which I did!

If like me you have just bought your Macbook Pro you may be unfamiliar with the downloading process, when you get to the download stage it starts to download the whole of office a process which takes about three hours in my case (I have a download speed of about 3.5 meg) to monitor the progress of the download click on the download tab at the top right of the page in Safari, a page will open showing you the progress of the download giving a time for completion.

When I started the download I thought nothing was happening and kept trying again and again to get some indication of what was happening, silly I know but I have only moved over to Mac a couple of days ago.

As to the programs all works well Outlook is so much better than mail which is why I went for this package, and Word makes it simpler to produce document that PC uses can see in full.

To sum up this is a cost effective way of getting office including Outlook on your Mac, Subject to my initial comments I would recommend this product
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on 27 October 2014
The software is excellent. I thought I could manage with Apple supplied software but after persevering for nearly 6 months, decided to purchase this.Life is so much easier now!
The only down side was that the software was advertised by Amazon as being supplied on DVD. As I didn't have a DVD drive, I purchased one at the same time (loading the software was time critical for me). When the software arrived, it was actually only a licence, it required a download. So I now have a DVD player ( i had opened up and used to check it was working, so can't really send it back now) which I don't really need - maybe it will come in handy sometime
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on 10 November 2013
I am a remote worker with a mac and most of my colleagues have PCs. This has saved me time and effort when sharing documents, calendars etc.
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on 8 January 2014
It's basically the same package as you'd get on a Windows platform, but there's several differences, most notably the inability to get read receipts on emails.

If you need cross-compatibility, then it's a necessary evil.
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on 4 February 2014
Microsoft have known for a long time that there are issues with Outlook identities. Long and short, the proprietary Microsoft system of 'identities' become frequently corrupted, meaning that every time Outlook connects to a mail server, Outlook thinks its seeing the same message for the first time, which means it will download 100's of messages again you have already read.

Follow MS instructions and you will rebuild your identity or have to re-install Outlook. If you do this, you will lose access to all of your existing e-mail accounts, folders, diary entries etc. You will still be able to find them on your Mac, but Outlook won't let you view them as they were created with a 'different' identity.

If you need further proof that Microsoft is not interested in supporting Mac communities, you only need to read the Apple and Office forums on this subject. MS must know about the issue and choose not to fix it. Contrary to what appears in some of the forums, this is not an Apple issue but down to how MS have chosen to set up Outlook. Sorry you'll have to use Mail or similar, even though Miscrosoft will have charged you for a non-workable product. Disgusting.
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on 5 March 2015
I find Office 2011 to be grossly inferior to Office 2007 from which I migrated. If you only use Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, the differences are probably tolerable, though you can get the same or better capability for free from OpenOffice. But if you run your life and business through Outlook it's a killer, because compared with Outlook 2007, Outlook 2011 is very difficult to migrate to, wastes screen real estate, and imposes a much higher workload on the user.
Regarding migration: I've been using Office since 1989 (Mac SE/30), and painlessly migrated upwards about 10 times. The migration to Outlook 2011 took a day and is still not quite right. Outlook 2011 put the .pst imported from Outlook 2007 not in its Outlook folder, but in another mail file, forcing me to manually recreate my 2007 mail folder structure and copy the imports across piecemeal. Life is too short to waste on such nonsense. It also failed to transfer my 100 or so Rules, although that may be a failure of the 2007 export.
It wastes screen real estate by having both an under-utilised toolbar which allows some customisation and a ribbon, which must be either displayed in full, or hidden. Toolbar and ribbon eat up over 20% of my 15" MBP screen. Hiding the ribbon is not a solution, since it includes some buttons that save time in common tasks, for example New Mail, Reply, Reply All, Attachment, Followup. These could easily fit in the vacant spaces on the toolbar, but Outlook 2011 doesn't allow that. And the remaining ribbon buttons (Filters, Contacts Search, Rules, and Junk) are infrequently used and could placed either in the main Menu, or invoked by right clicks. That would free up almost 10% of my expensive IPS screen for viewing my email folders.
The user's time is wasted by the Contacts feature. Outlook 2003 and 2007 use a system modelled on the Rolodex and show full details of any contact with two clicks plus maybe a scroll. 2011 replaces that a searchable, sortable multicolumn list and displaying full details takes 3 keystrokes, a list review, a double click, then 3 further clicks. Not be a problem if you have 20 contacts, but a disaster if you have 1,000.
The Rules feature is another time waster: space prevents me describing its baroque complexity: it takes 20 seconds to set up a new rule versus 3 in Outlook 2007.
I could go on, but won't.
So I'm writing off my £165 to experience and reverting to hosting Window 7 and Office 2007 on the MBP.
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on 9 December 2014
Please be aware this program is only meant for distribution in USA and Canda...
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on 16 February 2016
I have given 2 stars as the Microsoft customer support and policy is appalling.
I replaced my Macbook Air but had to return my new Macbook Pro as it was defective, consequently I ended up buying a New Office for Mac as I was told I exceeded number of installation - only with Microsoft and no other software!
Contacting Microsoft was an experience scarred me for life! I called 5 times and spent a whole day on the phone. I was passed to some parrots in India that all worked to the same script!

As far as software itself, unfortunately it is the only game in town and in particular for spreadsheet, Excel rides high and Apple's "Numbers" fails miserably to provide a credible alternative. The "Pages" is not that impressive either
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on 28 July 2015
WTF ...... it is Microsoft Office - essential software for anyone with a computer, so enough said, other than horrendously expensive for what it is and badly in need of updating - this is 2011 software in 2015!
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