Rumor: Office Web Apps could get name change to Office Online

Microsoft was forced to change the name of its SkyDrive service to OneDrive, thanks to losing a trademark dispute in court with TV provider BSkyB. Now there's word that Microsoft could also be changing the name of its free browser based Office Web Apps in the near future, but this time it appears to be Microsoft who wants to alter the brand.

ZDNet reports that they received some screenshots from Yan Zhu of livesino.net that show the use of "Office Online" in reference to the free browser software. In addition, there are also indications that each Office Online program will get a name change to Word Online, Excel Online, PowerPoint Online and OneNote Online. The article does not state where these screenshots came from. We have emailed Microsoft for comment.

Microsoft made some interface changes to Office Web Apps last week, along with adding some new features. The company also revealed on its official Office blog that Outlook.com and SkyDrive/OneDrive will get a new set of headers, shown above, that would allow those users faster access to the various Office Web Apps. However, that portion of the post was later removed for unknown reasons. To be fair, those blogs got defaced by the Syrian Electronic Army on the same day, so it's possible that the section about the headers was removed when the SEA messages were taken down.

Source: ZDNet | Images via ZDNet

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One Office, One Excel, One Word etc.

With the merging or culmination of Windows to be the same across all devices, I can also see them calling the Windows Phone (Modern UI) One OS. Marketing could go crazy with he idea stating something like, "At Microsoft, we only need the One OS, unlike our competitors. We only need the One Office to do our office work, and we have the One Drive to take care of moving our files between our devices"

What do you think?

I like this... I always felt "Office Web App", "Word Web App", "Excel Web App" sounded weird. I guess this also means OWA will be OO hehe

I like the company, but they really are boring when it comes to names.
The office suite is called Office, the word processor is called Word, the SQL Database server is called SQL Server.

So, I'm happy it's not getting renamed to something like 'Microsoft Office Web Application Platform For Broadband Internet Users'

It's not boring, they're smart names that immediately tell you what it is... you hear the name, you immediately know what it is means.

Joe User said,
Smart ≠ boring.

It might be a smart name, but it's still dull.

It's an office suite for crying out loud. Just be happy they didn't rename it to Office Online Wave E SP2 R3 Live 2014.

Sszecret said,

It's an office suite for crying out loud. Just be happy they didn't rename it to Office Online Wave E SP2 R3 Live 2014.

Thank you for repeating my point?

Joe User said,

Thank you for repeating my point?

Point is, it doesn't matter if a name is quite boring. If it works, it works. I'm not going to spend all day looking at the name of the web app. I'm just going to use it.

Sszecret said,

Point is, it doesn't matter if a name is quite boring. If it works, it works. I'm not going to spend all day looking at the name of the web app. I'm just going to use it.

So, you agree with me. MS has some boring names but good products.
You could have just clicked like, it would have saved time.

Of course, you missed my point completely, which was about marketing and not about the actual software.

Having complex or dull names makes marketing harder and MS needs lots of good marketing right now. So, naming it Office Online is a good step. Office Web Apps, with Word Web App and Excel Web App is descriptive yet needlessly long and not very creative. Apple Facetime is descriptive and catchy. Google Hangouts is descriptive and catchy. Microsoft Windows Live Messenger is descriptive and descriptive.

link6155 said,
I think it would be called OneOffice rather than Office One to match up with OneDrive if they choose to do that.

I think it should be called a Microsoft One subscription that includes Onedrive for Business, Outlook Online, and Office Online

And the trend of Microsoft changing/rebranding their online services continues. No wonder people get confused, although this is a welcome name change.

Right, because people who use Word Web App would not be able to make the transition to Word Online, get too confused, and then switch to Google. Other than "Excel Web App" on the top left while editing a spreadsheet online, there is no change.

Other companies routinely change their flagship product names, often with a baffling naming or number scheme. And nobody complains about them. But Microsoft changes the name and it means the end of that product.

WhatTheSchmidt said,
Right, because people who use Word Web App would not be able to make the transition to Word Online, get too confused, and then switch to Google. Other than "Excel Web App" on the top left while editing a spreadsheet online, there is no change.

Other companies routinely change their flagship product names, often with a baffling naming or number scheme. And nobody complains about them. But Microsoft changes the name and it means the end of that product.

I think that's a little too defensive, there is a valid point made here that MS does change names quite often, but it also does seem that things are becoming more cohesive now and the changes make sense, it has a nice direction.

You also have a point, although it may have ben lost in the defensive tone I feel.

WhatTheSchmidt said,
Right, because people who use Word Web App would not be able to make the transition to Word Online, get too confused, and then switch to Google. Other than "Excel Web App" on the top left while editing a spreadsheet online, there is no change.

One word : USERS.

duddit2 said,

I think that's a little too defensive, there is a valid point made here that MS does change names quite often, but it also does seem that things are becoming more cohesive now and the changes make sense, it has a nice direction.

You also have a point, although it may have ben lost in the defensive tone I feel.

They do change names, some of them required such as in this case, but really, is changing the name from Word Web App to Word Online going to confuse people that much? Are people going to look at their web browser with Excel Online open, and start panicking that it used to be Excel Web App?

Yes it does, and more obvious for some reason. I never had an issue or thought twice about the naming, but office online just strikes me as a more obvious and instantly recognisable name for others.

zhangm said,
Office Online sounds more professional than Office Web Apps.

Yes it does. And it goes in line with their recently renamed Visual Studio Online (formerly Team Foundation Service). I like the simplified and straight to the point branding.