Best new features in Excel 2013
Image 1 of 8
These are some of the new features in Excel 2013 that users should get to know. You can see these and a couple more picks in the original blog post, 10 best new features in Excel 2013.
Perhaps the closest thing to magic Excel users will ever see in a rnworkbook is Flash Fill. This feature anticipates formatting and data rnrequirements by recognizing patterns so it can finish what you start. This screenshot shows a typical use for Flash Fill. First, I transposed a rnrecord’s name value into last name, first name order. While doing the rnsame for the second record, Flash Fill recognized a pattern and rnsuggested possible entries to complete the column. When Flash Fill rndisplays this list, you have two choices: Press Enter to complete the rnlist or press [Esc] to remove it. To learn more about this feature, readrn Excel 2013 Flash Fill anticipates needs on the fly.
Most users don’t always know the best chart type for their data. rnRecommended Charts takes the guesswork out of the process. Simply click rninside the data you want to chart, click the Insert tab, and click rnRecommended Charts to see a collection of suggested chart types, as rnshown above. Then, click a thumbnail to preview your data rnas that chart type. Double-click a thumbnail to embed the chart. Using rnthis feature lets you work with confidence knowing the chart will rnhighlight your data in a meaningful way.
This feature works similar to Recommended Charts, but generates a quick rnPivotTable. It’s a great new feature for most users, because so many of rnus struggle with PivotTables. Click inside the data range (which must rnhave header cells) and click the Insert tab. In the Tables group, click rnRecommended PivotTables to display the dialog shown above. Select a thumbnail and click OK to embed an effective PivotTable in a new sheet.
Use Quick Analysis to quickly preview your data in meaningful ways. rnFor instance, Quick Analysis offers a second new way to generate rnappropriate charting for your data. Select the data and then click the rnQuick Analysis icon at the bottom-right, as shown above. Click the Charts tab to view the suggested chart types. If you don’t see this icon, check your settings:
- Click the File tab and choose Options from the left pane.
- Choose General in the left pane (the default).
- Inrn the User Interface Options section, the Show Quick Analysis Options On rnSelection option should be checked. Enabled is the default, so you rnshould see this icon unless someone has changed this setting.
- Click OK.
A timeline lets you filter records in a PivotTable—it works similar to a slicer, but you’ll filter by dates. For instance, here is a PivotTable and timeline. (I used the same data range used in rn#3.) Once you have a PivotTable arranged, adding the timeline is simple:rn
- With the PivotTable selected, click the contextual Analyze tab.
- In the Filter group, click Insert Timeline.
- Inrn the resulting dialog, check the date field (in this case, that’s Date) rnand click OK. Excel will embed the timeline alongside the PivotTable.
Microsoft claims that its cloud support is the true shining star of rnthe Office 2013 suite. If you need it, you probably agree; many rnorganizations aren’t taking full advantage of it yet. If you’re curious,rn you can quickly hook up to SkyDrive or your organization’s SharePoint rnteam site by using the Save As (or Open) screen. Doing so has two advantages:
- Yourn have quick and easy access to your Excel files on any device that runs rnExcel 2013 (including a Windows tablet and smartphone).
- Using Office 365 (you’ll need a subscription), you can review and edit your workbooks online using almost any web browser.
Apps for Office
This new feature provides quick access to specialized programs at Officern Store. Just a quick click and you’re shopping! To install an app, clickrn the Insert tab and then click Apps for office in the Apps group. You’llrn need an account at the store, which the feature will help you create rnthe first time you use it. This slide shows Bing Maps as an installed app.