Share & coauthor

Collaborate on Word documents with real-time co-authoring

Collaborate on Word documents with real-time co-authoring

When someone shares a Word document with you, the email you receive includes a link that opens the document in your web browser: in Word Online. Select Edit Document > Edit in Browser.

Select Edit in Browser to edit in Word Online

If anyone else is working on the document, you'll see their presence and the changes they're making. We call this coauthoring, or real-time collaboration.

Real-time collaboration

From here, if you'd rather work in your Word app, select Edit in Word, near the top of the window.

Edit in Word

Want a guided tour? Download this Collaborate in Word learning guide, or type Collaborate in the search box in File > New in Word (works best in versions 2016 and later for Windows).

You'll still be coauthoring, as long as you're an Office 365 subscriber, using one of these versions of Word:

  • Word 2016 for Windows

  • Word 2016 for Mac

  • Word on a mobile device (Android, iOS, or Windows)

If you're using an older version of Word, or if you're not a subscriber, you can still edit the document at the same time others are working in it, but you won't have real-time collaboration. To see others' changes and share yours, you'll have to save the document from time to time.

Documents with Macros (.docm)

If your document contains macros (.docm), you can still edit and collaborate. You can open and edit the content like any other document, including running macros. If you need to edit the macro code, simply check out the file, edit the code, and check it back in.

Learn more about macros

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