After adding the ability to open Microsoft Office files in the Edge browser, Microsoft is now attaching Office 365 app launcher shortcuts to the left sidebar on the New Tab page to make it easier to open your apps in the browser. The Office Sidebar is already available in the latest Microsoft Edge, here’s how you can enable and disable it later if you don’t need it.
What is the Office sidebar?
- The Office Sidebar is a new feature that was being tested by Microsoft in the Edge browser since September of last year.
- It contains shortcuts to Microsoft 365 apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneDrive, OneNote, To Do, Calendar and Skype, etc.
- You may notice this as an App Launcher expansion that appears on the left side of the New Tab page.
- It supports dark mode and automatically adjusts when you resize the Edge window.
- Regardless of the new tab page layout you choose, the sidebar remains open and permanently visible unless you hide it.
- Now available to general consumers and may be more useful to Microsoft 365 subscribers as well as regular users.
- While this mimics the Sidebar in Opera, which has been integrated into Messenger sites and Social Platforms such as Opera Software’s Twitter, here Microsoft’s goal or intent may be to let Edge users quickly open their Office apps from within. of the Sidebar.
Note: Edge has Sidebar Search and Vertical Guides available. The former opens a sidebar and displays relevant Bing results when the user searches for the selected word or phrase on a page, while the latter displays current open tabs in the sidebar.
The Office sidebar feature is now available and buried in the New Tab page layout settings in Edge 99 stable. Here’s how you can enable it now.
Enable or disable Office Sidebar in Microsoft Edge browser
- Start Microsoft Edge
- Open new tab page
- Click on the cog to open the page layout settings.
- When it displays Focused, Inspired, Informational and Personalized modes, select the Custom mode to see the options available to customize the New Tab page.
- Now you can notice the new “Office sidebar” Switch, enable it, this adds the office sidebar to the left side.
At any time, you can hide or close the sidebar by right-clicking and selecting “hide sidebar”, or you can simply toggle the office sidebar option to “off” in the Custom section of the cog.
It looks like Microsoft has quietly added the Office Sidebar option to the custom section of the New Tab page in the Edge browser for everyone to enable and open Office 365 apps with a recent stable release. The feature is optional and not enabled by default.
What is your opinion on this? Did you like it? Let us know in the comments below.
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