Office 365 Client Compatibility

I’m writing this post to help clear up any confusion that might revolve around questions of Office 365 client compatibility (between Office 365, web browsers, legacy versions of Microsoft Office, and the Windows OS). The theme that runs across Microsoft's recommendations for Office 365 is "stay current, or pretty close."

 

 

 

This philosophy aligns closely with recent industry trends to limit the support life-cycle for older versions of software, and thus reducing costs, while increasing sales. Supported Microsoft Office Clients Office 365 is designed to work with any version of Microsoft Office that is in mainstream support. Although most new Office 365 experiences are designed for the latest version of Office, some new features might work with older versions of Office that are in mainstream support. Although Office clients in extended support were not designed to work with Office 365, they should continue to connect to the Office 365 service.

Microsoft Office Word2007

Office 365 Support provides assistance with older clients, offering workarounds or how-to information when possible. However, in many cases, the only solution Office 365 Support can offer for a problem with an older browser or client is to upgrade it.

Office 365 is not designed to work with Office 2007 because Office 2007 left mainstream support on October 12, 2012. Office 365 does not offer code fixes to resolve problems you encounter when using the service with Office 2007. You should expect the quality of the user experience to diminish over time, and many new Office 365 experiences will not work at all. Microsoft recommends upgrading as soon as possible to Office 365 ProPlus or Office Professional Plus 2013 for the best experience with Office 365. Web Browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari)

web browser logos

As a rule of thumb, Office 365 is designed to work with the current or immediately previous version of the web browsers listed above.  This is primarily due to Microsoft's policy of supporting only browser versions that are also supported by the browser’s manufacturer, which is typically only the most current version. Be aware, however, that support for Office 365 doesn't necessarily guarantee compatibility with every feature of Office 365.  For example, currently S/MIME (one method of email encryption) is unsupported for Firefox, Opera, or Chrome. In Summary

  • Mainstream Support: (No Upgrade Required) Connectivity + Feature Compatibility
  • Extended Support: (Upgrade Recommended) Connectivity + Best Effort Compatibility/Support
  • End of Life: (Upgrade Required) No support for Connectivity or Compatibility

Office365CompatabilityChart

References

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