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How can we improve Excel for Mac?

Just click individual cells to sum

Excel 2011 had the possibility to sum individual cells by typing "=", and then just clicking on individual cells across the workbook that you want to sum, and "return" when done. This functionality is no longer available in Excel 2016 (you have to type "=sum(", then clicking on the individual cells while holding down the command key, "return". I would be happy if the old functionality is brought to Excel 2016.

341 votes
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Saskia Aldershof shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

Update – thanks for the continued support of this feature. We’ll keep this request open for voting, but we’ll need to consider modifying the behavior slightly if it is to be brought back. For this suggestion, we would want to enable such behavior on both Mac and Windows, but we would need to do it in a way that does not cause problems for people who don’t want this behavior. For example, it may be that you would type =, then hold the CMD key as you click the cells to be added. Or perhaps you would need to enable a preference to get the old behavior. Please comment on these options or offer other ideas.

We’ve been working to make Excel more consistent between Mac and Windows, as can be seen by the updates over the past several months, which have satisfied several thousand votes on this forum (multi-thread calculation, PivotCharts, modern chart types, new functions, slicers for tables). I mention that to be clear that we are listening to the suggestions, comments and votes.

Steve K [MS Excel]


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  • Nikki commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I agree...bring back the old feature to type = and then click cells to have it automatically put a + in between each cell. It's a pain to have to click shift+ between every cell.

  • Rupe commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It is quite clear this issue has gone dead. It has been almost a year since anyone has even looked at it. What's the point in voting? What the heck are we voting for if no one responds?

  • Eric commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Successfully downgraded to Office 2011 - 3 weeks ago - all behaviours are back just fine. Macros work (half as many dire warnings), keyboard customizations, relative references, formulas copy and paste, click to add cells, printing on custom size papers works, no freeze-ups (so far).
    I don't collaborate online, and I write and use all my own macros in-house. YMMV.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Total waste of space remobving it - it's pants compared to the old version

  • Refik Telhan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I really do not understand why such a handy feature has been removed in the first place. There may be good reason to remove it, but it could still have been kept in the software with a modifier key. Why removing it totally?

  • jmtaylor commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is one of the many features I am missing from Excel 2011. The colour palettes have changed, the Developer UI is now inconsistent with years of previous work. I can't touch those sheets with the new Office. Many keyboard shortcuts are gone. I see my windows user colleagues reaching for the mouse all the time to paw through oceans of ribbons. Now I know why.

    At the same time, some devilish new feature that slowly misaligns my cursor from the spreadheet cell below is a new plague. I find that for all the 365 office apps, I have to wait for each command to complete before the next can be entered. For example command-s, command-w. I moved to 365 when getting a new computer. My 6-year old mac was faster than Office 365 on a six core i9.

    I would welcome a mode that let me use the old colours and keyboard shortcuts. Yes, and the click to sum behaviour too.

  • Phillip commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Dear Steve, your last update was in late March, it's now October - has there been any progress? Can this be incorporated as a user preference?

  • BobS commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    please restore the simple click function to sum randomly selected cells.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please, Pretty Please. as cmd or option click would be acceptable, and while you are at it how about bringing back the option click on a row or column to insert a new one quickly. Thansks for listening.

  • CH commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is the NUMBER ONE feature that I most use. It is so basic and simple. Now, one has to go around the block to get next door. PLEASE REINSTATE this key function!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    How many requests does it take to get this done???? BRING THE FEATURE BACK!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I still miss it constantly after several years. Bringing it back as an option set in preferences would be fine. One of the preferences could be set is that you need to press the Option Key while clicking to get the sum. This would compliment the feature that holding down the Command Key while clicking on cells creates a list of cells separated by commas.

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