Microsoft Word: Comments Feature Updates!

Workplace collaboration is evolving—and so is Microsoft Word.

Today, we’re pleased to announce expanded availability of our new modern commenting experience across Word platforms

Welcoming Modern Comments!

Modern comments sets the stage for a richer Word collaboration experience for you and your teams by enabling modern features such as @mention notifications and more. It aligns how comments work across Office on different endpoints, so that you and your team can rely on a consistent experience regardless of whether you’re using Word, Excel, or PowerPoint on any platform.

Modern comments was first introduced on the mobile and Web versions of Word where we iterated based on feedback.  Now it is rolling out to Production on Word for Windows, and Current Channel (Preview) on Word for Mac!

Stay in Control!

With modern comments, you no longer have to worry about your comments being seen by others before you’re finished editing them. After you draft a new comment or reply, click the Post button or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Enter (Windows) or Cmd + Enter (MacOS) to share your thoughts with others.   Now, a comment or reply can only be edited by the person who created it. 

Flexibility in how you view and interact with comments 

In Word you’ll find comments to the right of your page, by default. In this view, contextual comments are side-by-side with the page content, to help you focus on the feedback that’s most relevant to the part of the document you’re working on.

In the Comments pane, you can see a single list of all comments in your document, including resolved comments

Resolve comment threads 

Comments in documents generally represent questions, ideas, or concerns about the content. When those have been addressed, comments allow you to mark that thread as resolved. Resolved comment threads won’t appear in the contextual view (though you can still find them in the Comments pane) to help you stay focused on what’s active. 

What’s Next on Microsoft’s roadmap?

As we continue learning from you, we are planning a set of changes to the experience to address the feedback.  This includes bringing back additional legacy functionality that you have told us about and are missing as well as key usability and efficiency improvements.  We will be rolling out these changes in the next 3-4 months:

  • Quick Edit: We will make it easier to enter edit mode for a comment such as showing the edit button on hover.
  • Ctrl+Enter & Cmd+Enter awareness: promote keyboard shortcut usage for post
  • Comment anchor connection: We will iterate on the experience to make it easier to see what a comment is referring to
  • Tracked Changes: Show Revisions Inline: promote using the “Show All Revisions inline” setting to show track changes on the canvas instead of between the comments (see the FAQ link below to try this out today)
  • Image support: add images to comments
  • Selection interaction improvements: We will make it easier to expand and read another comment while a draft comment is in progress.
  • Reported bug fixes such as printing PDFs with comments
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