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Microsoft Word getting killer upgrade to battle Google Docs

Microsoft Word
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

You could soon find yourself finishing Microsoft Word documents a lot faster, as the software is getting a new text prediction feature. 

Coming in the form of an update to the Microsoft 365 roadmap, Word is getting a smart tool that will suggest the next words in a sentence by analyzing your writing style and preferences and let you add them in a single tap. It should become available to Word users as soon as next month.

Until now, text prediction was one of the features that set Google Docs apart from Microsoft Word. Google Docs Smart Compose first introduced back in 2018. 

According to Microsoft, the new update will help users "write more efficiently by predicting text quickly, timely and accurately."

Added to the Microsoft Roadmap on February 19, this time-saving feature is designed to simultaneously autogenerate text as the user composes the document. 

The feature will generate greyed-out text predictions, which users will then be able to either accept using the Tab key, type over them, or opt-out via the Escape key. 

The update will also adapt to the user's writing style over time by analyzing linguistic preferences and writing habits. And it will also make sure to avoid any occasional spelling and grammar mistakes. 

While the feature is planned to be rolled out next month, the company hasn't yet specified as to when the feature will be released for the web client and the macOS versions of Microsoft Word.

Microsoft appears to be on quite the push to build out Word's features. Last year it added a transcription feature to its word processor, it now allows you to upload audio into Word, and then get a transcript you can immediately drop into your document. 

And now it's bringing a proper version of Microsoft Office, which includes Word, to the iPad, potentially making it a perfect fit for the productivity-centric iPad Pro 2020. We have no doubt that Word and the rest of the Office suite wil continue to build out their features as 2021 moves onwards. 

Denise Primbet

Denise is a news writer at Tom’s Guide covering consumer tech news, deals, streaming, gaming and more. When she’s not playing horror games, she’s a part-time piano enthusiast and experimenting in the kitchen. You can reach her at