Productivity Windows

Upgrade to Office 2016 for Free Today with Your Office 365 Subscription

Tina Sieber 25-09-2015

Microsoft Office 2016 for Windows A Microsoft Office 2016 Preview: Smart & Subtle Changes Office 2016 for Mac was just released and the Windows version will follow in the fall. We show you the new look and features of the world's most popular productivity suite. Will you upgrade? Read More has landed and it brings many smart new features, including co-authoring with real-time collaboration, simplified sharing, a great feature search engine called Tell Me, and much more. The Mac version of Office 2016 What's New In Office for Mac 2016? Download It & Find Out Microsoft is working on the next version of Office for Mac, due for release in 2016. For the time being, a (surprisingly stable) preview is available to download and use. Read More has actually been around for a few months already. If you have an Office 365 subscription An Introduction to Office 365: Should You Buy Into the New Office Business Model? Office 365 is a subscription based package that offers access to the latest desktop Office suite, Office Online, cloud storage, and premium mobile apps. Does Office 365 provide enough value to be worth the money? Read More , you can get it now for free and we show you how below.


Alternatively, you can buy it at the Microsoft store (different packages available and Microsoft has a guide for installing it) or your local retailer and if you’re unsure, we have a guide for what Office suite Which Office Suite Is Best for You? You'll be pressed to find an occupation that doesn't require word or number processing of some sort. And you may wonder, is Microsoft Office really the best solution? Here are your options. Read More to get. Note that if you’re running Office 2010 on Windows 10, you can get a 50% discount on a one year subscription of Office 365 Home; simply use the Get Office app in Windows 10.

Get Office

Before you overspend your budget, remember you can get Microsoft Word for free Yes, Get Microsoft Word for Free: Here's How Don't want to pay for the full Microsoft Word experience? Here are some ways on how you can use Microsoft Word for free. Read More and you can choose from many free alternatives for the entire Microsoft suite The 7 Best Free Microsoft Office Alternatives Microsoft Office is the king of office suites, but that doesn't mean it's the right one for you. Here are some other office suites you might like better! Read More .

Find Out Your Version of Office

Unsure whether you have an Office 365 subscription? You can look up your status. Open a file, any Office document, then navigate to File > Account and under you’ll see whether you have an Office 365 subscription.

Office 2016 Account


Here is a complete list of ways to check your version of Office from Microsoft.

Your Upgrade Will Be Final

Before you explore the upgrade, note that Microsoft states that you can not downgrade from Office 2016 back to Office 2013 once you have upgraded. If you don’t want to upgrade, you might want to turn off Microsoft Update (we also urge you to turn off Recommended updates, so you don’t accidentally upgrade to Windows 10 Stop the Windows 10 Download & Installation on Your Windows 7 or 8 Device If your Internet has been slower than usual or if you noticed less disk space, you can probably blame Microsoft. Windows Update may have downloaded the Windows 10 installation files behind your back. Stop it! Read More ) and Office Updates (see instructions below).


Automatic Upgrade to Office 2016 with Your Office 365 Subscription

Office 2016 is being rolled out right now. If you have subscribed to Office 365 and are currently running Office 2013 with automatic Windows and Microsoft software updates Fix Windows Update & Make It Less Annoying Without Compromising Security Windows Update can be a nuisance. Here is how you can protect yourself from its annoyances without compromising security. Read More enabled, you will be offered the upgrade to Office 2016 eventually.


However, it may take a few weeks until you see the upgrade notification, depending on which servicing branch your on. On the Office 365 Community you can find a rollout chart [Broken URL Removed].

Office 2016 Rollout

Manually Upgrade with Office 365

If you have an Office 365 subscription with automatic Windows updates disabled or if you don’t currently have Office 2013 installed, the manual way to upgrade starts at your, or rather My Account. You’ll have to log in with the Microsoft account 5 Security Tips to Consider When Using a Microsoft Account You can't use much of the new Windows 8 user interface without a Microsoft account. The account you for logging into into your computer is now an online account. This raises security concerns. Read More you used to subscribe to Office 365. Here you should see the following note at the top of the page: Get the new – It’s one of the perks of having Office 365. Under Install, you’ll see which Office version and how many licenses are available to you.

Office 365 Upgrade Option


To upgrade, select the red Install > button, confirm your settings or adapt Language and install options (double check Additional install options for the bit version), then click the Install button once more. Be sure to select Additional

Office 2016 Install Information

Clicking Install will download the Office 2016 installer, which only takes a few seconds; it’s not the full download, yet. You’ll also see the window below pop up with step-by-step instructions.

Office 2016 Installation Steps


If you run into an issue due to incompatible bit versions, go back and download the right installer. If everything’s good, just follow the instructions. Note that your old Office version will be replaced, meaning all open documents will be closed. Moreover, according to Microsoft, you will not be able to revert to Office 2013 once you have upgraded! Now the full version of Office is downloading and installing, which can take some time.

Office 2016 Installing

If everything worked out, you’ll see the following screen. For me this took less than 5 minutes.

Office 2016 Successfully Installed

If you run into any other issues with the installation, Microsoft has compiled a comprehensive Troubleshooting page for installing Office, a Help page for installing any Office edition, and a Help page dedicated to Office 2016.

How You Might Think It Works but It Doesn’t

You’d think you’d be able to trigger the upgrade from within Office. However, the internal upgrade option provided in Office only adds updates to that version, not upgrades to the next version.

As mentioned earlier, open a random Office file and go to File > Account and under Office Updates expand Update Options. Here you have four choices: Update Now, Disable Updates, View Updates, and About Updates.

Office Update Options

The View Updates option actually takes you to a website with an overview of current Office updates and resuling sub-versions. Here you can compare your version, noted under Office Updates, and the most current version listed at the top right of the page. Note that this does not refer to the high level Office version (2013 vs. 2016), but only to the sub-versions that change with version-specific updates. Interestingly, my Office version (Office 2016 Preview) appears to be more recent than what’s listed on the website.

Update Office 2013

Ready to Upgrade?

Unlike Windows 10, you don’t risk much with upgrading to Office 2016. It will be downward compatible with Office 2013 and previous office versions. However, since you won’t be able to downgrade, it might be worth waiting for a little until its stability is confirmed. Otherwise you might find yourself discussing Office 2016 problems and solutions [Broken URL Removed].

Meanwhile, familiarize yourself with some Office keyboard shortcuts How to Find Every Microsoft Office Keyboard Shortcut You Could Ever Need Finding a complete list of keyboard shortcuts can be a chore. Let Word automatically generate a list of all of its shortcuts! You'll find keyboard shortcuts for other Office applications, too. Read More and things you never thought could be done in Office 8 Things You Can Do in Office That You Never Thought Of Microsoft Office turns the Pareto Principle on its head: 80% of its users only use 20% of the features. Time to rediscover Microsoft Office features you never considered. We have compiled eight insanely useful productivity... Read More . It’s such a powerful tool, if you depend on an Office suite for your job, it’s worth investing in Microsoft Office and learning its in and outs. Otherwise, the new LibreOffice Is the New LibreOffice a Better Microsoft Office Alternative? LibreOffice, a long-time contender of Microsoft Office, just received a makeover and important updates. After being held back by niggling bugs over the years, has LibreOffice finally found the winning formula? Read More is a pretty strong contender for the price of free.

What makes you upgrade to Office 2016 or hold off? Are there any features you’re excited about? Please share your experience with us in the comments!

Related topics: Microsoft Office 2013, Microsoft Office 2016, Microsoft Office 365, Windows Upgrade.

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  1. Francis Cattermole
    December 7, 2015 at 7:44 am

    Upgrade is fine but has one compete disaster. Previous document lists when opening any of the Office suite generate a list starting January 2015 instead of December 2015. A bug that needs immediate correction please

  2. Anonymous
    September 29, 2015 at 2:57 am

    Beware the free upgrade. Granted, I (like a lot of folks) subscribe to Office 365 to get the latest and greatest version of office. However, up until about a week or so ago, Microsoft was selling standalone licenses for Visio Professional 2013, Project Professional 2013, and others. Upgrade to Office 2016, though, and you'll find those "older" pieces of software have been deemed "incompatible" and must be uninstalled. Are there lower-priced upgrade licenses? No, most certainly there are not.

    For me to replace my Visio Pro and Project Pro licenses, with new 2016 standalone licenses will cost more than $1600. If there's a scale with "free" on one end, and "definitely not free" on the other - yeah, Office 2016 might be definitely not free.

    It gets better. At least with my new QHD laptop, some of Office's dialog boxes, such as those for Advanced Search, in Outlook, won't display their entire contents. With no vertical scroll bars appearing in those dialog boxes, I can never configure an Advanced Search, in Outlook. I suppose I'd put that in the category of what you face, as an "early adopter" of Office 2016.

  3. Anonymous
    September 26, 2015 at 11:12 pm

    I deployed Office 365 on a few PCs on September 22nd, which just happened to be Office 2016's its release date. I was expecting to get the same Office 2013 I'd gotten last week and was surprised and mildly annoyed that I wasn't explicitly told I'd be getting something different, but there also wasn't an option to do anything else, especially when I used the same installer and got two different products.

  4. Anonymous
    September 26, 2015 at 11:42 am

    Boy, Microsoft really is changing up its thinking in a lot of ways...give Apple users precidence over Windows users by releasing Office 2016 to them first? Wow.