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Leaked Outlook for Mac images hint at new MS Office for OS X

Long overdue redesign for Microsoft's Office suite could be on the way for OS X users

Microsoft could be working on a completely redesigned version of its Office producitivty suite for Apple’s OS X, according to leaked images which appear to show a brand new look for Outlook for Mac.

Office has long been the go-to productivity suite for Windows users, but has a large following among Mac users that made the switch to OS X, yet couldn’t get used to Apple’s Pages, Keynote and Numbers software. Office for Mac has also included Outlook for some time, as OS X didn’t play nicely with Microsoft’s Exchange servers, and it appears the email client could be the first bit of software updated for 2014.

The images, which were obtained by Chinese website cnBeta, show a brand new look for Outlook for Mac, which matches the flat visual style Apple introduced with OS X Yosemite and looks like a combination of the current Outlook for Windows and Mac Mail. According to the accompanying report, the new version will be more tightly integrated with the Yosemite notification center and include a display mode optimised for high resolution Retina screens.

It will reportedly also include greater support for cloud documents, although whether that will mean integration with Apple’s iCloud Drive, or Microsoft’s own cloud services remains to be seen. With OneDrive and Office365 both getting a big push from Microsoft on its own Windows platform, it could look to integrate both with the new programs.

It’s unclear whether Microsoft will be adding other Office software to the updated Mac suite; Publisher, Access and OneNote have yet to make the jump from Windows to OS X.

Office for Mac was last updated in 2011, meaning an overhauled version is long overdue. Although the report doesn’t suggest when the new version will get a final release, based on the screenshots we hopefully aren’t too far away – assuming the images are real, of course.

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