Microsoft 365 Apps Get Support for OpenDocument Format 1.4: What You Need to Know

microsoft 365 hero approved

Key Takeaways:

  • Microsoft 365 apps now save files in the OpenDocument Format (ODF) 1.4 by default, ensuring better compatibility with other applications that support ODF.
  • The latest ODF version adds several new features, such as inserting tables within shapes in Word and text rotation within table cells in PowerPoint.
  • Microsoft has rolled out ODF 1.4 support to Microsoft 365 customers in the Current Channel.

Microsoft has announced that its Microsoft 365 apps now support OpenDocument Format (ODF) 1.4 by default. The latest version brings a host of new features and improvements to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint that are already supported by the Open Office XML format.

In Microsoft Word, users can now insert tables within shapes. Additionally, ODT files support all number list formats available in Word. With certain languages enabled, users can also use new writing modes in tables within paragraphs for .docx files.

Furthermore, Microsoft has made minor adjustments to how error values are saved in ODS files in Excel. Additionally, ODS files now support saving color filter settings with certain restrictions. Microsoft has also rolled out some minor enhancements to load text rotated 90° clockwise or counterclockwise.

In Microsoft PowerPoint, ODP files now support slide numbering starting from 0. Moreover, ODP files now allow text rotation within table cells at 90° and 270° angles. Microsoft has also introduced a new accessibility attribute to mark objects as purely decorative, allowing them to be ignored by assistive technologies.

Microsoft 365 Apps Get Support for OpenDocument Format 1.4
ODF File in Microsoft Word (Image Credits: Microsoft)

How to save files in OpenDocument Format 1.4

To save a file in OpenDocument Format 1.4, Microsoft 365 customers will need to follow the steps mentioned below:

  • Create a new file or open an existing one in Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint.
  • Click File and then select the Save As option.
  • Specify the folder for saving the file and click the “Save as type” dropdown menu. Now, select OpenDocument Spreadsheet (.ods) in Excel, OpenDocument Text (.odt) in Word, or OpenDocument Presentation (*.odp) in PowerPoint.
  • Finally, click the Save button.

Microsoft notes that ODF 1.4 support is now available in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for Current Channel customers running Windows version 2404 or later, or macOS version 16.84 or later. Last month, Microsoft announced the general availability of ODF 1.4 support in Office LTSC 2024 Preview.

Keep in mind that users will need to save ODF 1.3 and earlier files as ODF 1.4 to open them in Microsoft 365 apps. However, customers using older versions of Office can still open files saved in the 1.4 format, but they won’t have access to the new OpenDocument Format 1.4 capabilities.