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Word Online

Office 365
 

Applies to: Office 365

Topic Last Modified: 2014-12-12

Word Online (formerly Word Web App) extends your Microsoft Word experience to the web browser, where you can work with documents directly on the website where the document is stored.

NoteNote:
To help you compare offers, advanced features listed in this article include Word desktop app capabilities that are only available in an Office 2013 suite (such as Office Professional Plus, Office Standard, and Office 365 ProPlus). To quickly see which features are only applicable to the Word desktop app, see Compare feature availability across Word Online and Word 2013 desktop app. For a list of all Office Online features, such as Excel Online and OneNote Online, see Feature availability across Office 365 plans.

With Word Online, you can use rulers, gridlines, and guides for aligning to margins in your documents. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

The paragraph and character styles that are saved in a document are available to be applied to text in Word Online. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

You can get an app for Word from the Office Store. Apps only work in the Word desktop app and are not available in Word Online. Learn how to get an app for Word.

Word Online automatically saves your document when you make changes.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced design features, such as starting documents from a large selection of professionally designed templates hosted on Office.com, are only available in the Word desktop app. However, Office 365 customers can configure a document library to launch a custom template when a user creates a new document. To learn more, see Add a content type to a list or library.

With Word Online, you can apply a choice of three bullet styles or five numbering styles. Click the Increase Indent and Decrease Indent buttons to change the list level for existing bulleted and numbered lists in the document, as well as those created in the Word desktop app. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

Not available in Word Online. If you have the Word desktop app installed on your computer, then you can use Word to add captions to a document. Learn more about adding captions in Word 2013.

Not available in Word Online. You can view existing citations in Word Online, but you can’t add citations. If you have the Word desktop app installed on your computer, then you can use Word to add a bibliography and citations to your document. Learn more about creating a bibliography in Word 2013.

Because of the limitations of web browser technology, copying and pasting text in Office Online differs from copying and pasting text in the Office desktop applications. Learn more about copy and paste in Office Online.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced collaboration features, such as turning on Track Changes and merge, compare, and combine documents, are only available in the Word desktop app. As expected, tracked changes appear in Word Online while in View mode.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced document elements, such as AutoText, cover pages, bibliography, table of contents, index, equations, and watermarks, are only available in the Word desktop app.

Not available in Word Online. Document parts and themes, such as content controls and pre-formatted collections of color scheme, font scheme, and graphic effect pre-sets are only available in the Word desktop app.

Translate documents directly in the browser. Even document comments are translated.

Find and replace text in your document using the Find and Replace tool in both Word Online and Word desktop app. To learn more about using Find and Replace in Word Online, see What's new in Word Online.

With Word Online, you can apply font, font size, and several font formatting attributes—including bold, italic, underling, and superscript. Highlight text, change font color, and clear formatting for selected text. Document theme formatting is available to format text in Word Online. Find the active theme fonts at the top of the Fonts gallery and theme colors in the Font Color gallery. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

You can add footnotes and endnotes to your documents in Word Online. Learn more about adding footnotes and endnotes in Word Online.

When you open your document in OneDrive or SharePoint, Word Online opens the document in the browser. The layout and formatting are what you would see if you were to open the document in Print Layout view in the Word desktop app.

Insert a header and footer to your document in both Word Online and the Word desktop app. You also have the ability to apply headers and footers to all pages except the first page of your document. To learn more about using headers and footers in Word Online, see What's New in Word Online.

With Word Online, you can easily create links to bookmarks within a document, and set a screen tip that displays when the cursor points to the link. Learn more about hyperlinks in Word Online.

With Word Online, you can insert a picture from a file saved on your local hard drive or from Bing Images. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

Word Online displays documents that are protected with Information Rights Management (IRM). However, these documents cannot be edited in the browser, and you cannot create IRM-protected documents in Word Online. Word Online can’t open documents that are encrypted with a password. Advanced document protection features, such as creating IRM-protected documents and applying password-protection, are only available in the Word desktop app.

In Word Online, start typing directly below an existing numbered list and your next line automatically becomes part of the list. Learn more about creating a list in Word Online.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced data integration features, such as mail merge using an Excel spreadsheet, is only available in the Word desktop app.

Not available in Word Online. Office Online requires an Internet connection and an Internet browser. You need the Word desktop app installed on your computer to view and edit a document while disconnected from the Internet or from your organization’s on-premises Office Web Apps Server. If you have the Word desktop app installed, you can use the full functionality of Word to view and edit your document. When you save, the online document is updated with your changes. You can also download and save-as an offline copy of the document, but it will not be in sync with the online version. Learn more about Office Web Apps Server.

Insert page breaks in both Word Online and the Word desktop app.

With Word Online, you can adjust margins, size of paper and whether page is laid out vertically or horizontally in their documents. Word Online does not display rulers and gridlines. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced page layout features, such as page borders and line numbers, are only available in the Word desktop app.

Insert page numbers to your document in both Word Online and the Word desktop app. You also have the ability to apply page numbers to all pages except the first page of your document. To learn more about using page numbers in Word Online, see What's new in Word Online.

With Word Online, you can align paragraphs left, right, or centered; run text right-to-left; increase or decrease indentation; and format paragraphs as a bulleted or numbered list. You can also clear formatting. You cannot adjust line spacing in Word Online. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

With Word Online, you can resize pictures and add alternative text in your document. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

Not available in Word Online. With Word 2013 desktop app, you can use Office Presentation Service or Microsoft Lync to display a document during an online meeting so that colleagues can follow a link to watch as you page through the document.

With Word Online, you get a one-click process for generating a PDF and displaying the Print dialog box. Learn more about printing a document in Word Online.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced printing features, such as printing markups and document properties, are only available in the Word desktop app

Word Online automatically checks spelling as you type and applies a wavy red underline to misspelled text. Common AutoCorrect actions are included, such as correcting routine misspellings or converting characters to symbols. Additionally, you can set the proofing language or turn off the spelling checker for selected text. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced proofing tools, such as adding new words to the spell check dictionary, applying a custom dictionary, and language and translation tools, are only available in the Word desktop app.

More than one person can work simultaneously in a document. In Word Online, real-time presence helps you see where your co-authors are working in the document so that you don’t create conflicts as you edit, and you can see changes as they’re being made. Word 2013 supports simultaneous editing, but there is no presence indication, and changes can’t be seen by multiple authors until the document is saved. To learn more about real-time co-authoring in Word Online, see What's new in Word Online.

Bibliography, table of contents, and index features display in the document as expected in View mode. In Edit mode, they appear as placeholders that you can delete but not edit or update. Advanced reference tools, such as creating a bibliography, table of contents, index, or table of authorities, are only available in the Word desktop app.

Not available in Word Online. Advanced rich media features, such as inserting a PowerPoint video into your Word document or inserting online videos, are only available in the Word desktop app.

Advanced table formatting, such as choosing pre-set table styles, setting options for header rows and columns, and setting options for shading and borders, are available in both Word Online and the Word desktop app. To learn more about table formatting in Word Online, see What's new in Word Online.

With Word Online, you can save a copy of the document locally.

With Word Online, it’s a one-click process for sending a link that others can use to view or edit the document. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

With Word Online, you can insert a table, edit table text, and easily edit basic table structure, such as adding or deleting rows and columns. More advanced table features, such as table styles, cell size, text direction, and sort order, are only available in the Word desktop app.

With Word Online, existing documents with SmartArt display properly in View mode. In Edit mode, they appear as placeholders that you can delete but not edit. They cannot be moved or resized in Word Online. Advanced art features, such as inserting shapes, charts, text boxes, SmartArt, or WordArt, are only available in the Word desktop app

Not available in Word Online. You can view an existing table of contents, but you can’t create one using Word Online. If you have the Word desktop app installed on your computer, then you can use Word to create a table of contents in your document. Learn more about how to create a table of contents.

Not available in Word Online. You can view an existing table of authority, but you can’t create one using Word Online.

When you need to accomplish something in Word Online but don’t know how, you can use the Tell Me search feature to quickly find what you’re looking for. Tell Me understands what you’re trying to accomplish and helps you do it faster by making suggestions.

Undo a series of actions, or repeat an action.

Active X controls, embedded OLR objects, and a signature line will display in the document as expected in View mode. In Edit mode, they appear as placeholders that you can delete but not edit. They cannot be moved or resized in Word Online. Advanced controls and macros, are only available in the Word desktop app. Learn more about differences between using a document in the browser and in Word.

With Word Online, you can insert, edit, or delete comments in both View and Edit mode. You can also reply to a comment or mark it as done, just as you would in Word on the desktop.

Word Online gives you a rough word count for words in your document. Learn more about word count in Word Online.

Zoom is available in View mode. With Word Online, use your browser’s view settings to zoom in or out in Edit mode. Learn more about word count in Word Online.

To view feature availability across Office 365 plans, standalone options, and on-premise solutions, see Office Online Service Description.

If you have comments or questions about this topic, we'd love to hear from you. Just send your feedback to Office 365 Service Description Feedback. Your comments will help us provide the most accurate and concise content.

 
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