Sometimes, a brand is so popular that it replaces the common noun it was designed to be used with. For example, a copy is a Xerox, a plastic baggie is a Ziploc, and looking anything up online is Googling it.

And when it comes to creating a spreadsheet, you’re making an Excel document, no matter which program you use.

Let’s face it. Microsoft has long since cemented itself as the leader in technology innovation. Programs like Excel have been replicated by other developers but never duplicated. 

The company established a place in the public eye in 1985. Ever since then, Microsoft has been leading the way in hardware and software evolution, and these Excel innovations make it clear why.

1. The First Computer Business Solution

The first Excel program came out in 1982, but most of us don’t remember it because it was under the name Multiplan. What began as a basic control program for microcomputers disappeared when Lotus came out and replaced DOS.

Instead of giving up, Microsoft studied the new needs of its users and revamped its software. The result was Excel v2.0 for Windows, released in 1987.

The popularity of Excel outsold Lotus and other competitors of the time. But Microsoft didn’t stop there. 

Developers continued to foresee a need for businesses to use computers to automate tasks. When the next version, Excel 5.0, came out, it included Macros. 

Now, you don’t need a degree in computer technology to learn how to use spreadsheets to perform any process involving numbers and turning information into visual data.

It was that model that turned Excel into the go-to software solution for businesses. 

2. Excel Adapts With the Times

Technology has a tendency to become obsolete quickly. Floppy discs, DOS, dot-matrix printers, dial-up modems … the list gets longer all the time.

So how can software that is now officially classified as vintage still be relevant today?

As Microsoft’s developers knew then, the answer is adaptation. With technology, if you don’t adapt, you disappear.

Adaptation in Action

Excel is a prime example of software adaptation at its finest. Today, the program is more than a spreadsheet. Excel 365 is the most widely used business solution in the world.

Because Excel adapts to almost every business platform and links with Microsoft Office, the program can do almost anything. 

Microsoft Excel is available online or offline on any device. You can access your documents whether you’re on a tablet, laptop, desktop, or smartphone. 

The combination of Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Excel is a culmination of decades of innovation. And the result is software that is so integral to the world that it has become a household term.

3. The Company’s Eye is Always on the Future

Now that Excel is at its peak and is utterly indispensable, is Microsoft done innovating? As the saying goes, if it isn’t broke, why fix it?

It’s obvious by now that Microsoft doesn’t subscribe to that way of thinking. The company’s eye is always on the future.

Technology continues to evolve, and Excel will adapt along with it. The future includes more cloud-based computing, collaboration, and data accessibility. Speed and efficiency are essential, and the competition is fierce.

AI, VR, and Custom Solutions

We know the internet isn’t going away, and reliance on it is only going to become more expected. Artificial intelligence and virtual reality are at the forefront of technology, so we’ll expect to see Excel bringing in these capabilities in more.

Customized solutions are another in-demand area. Microsoft has features that can be adjusted for the user’s preferences if you know how to use them. In the near future, these options will be more intuitive, although there will also be individual training in multiple formats. 

How far will Microsoft go to adapt to artificial intelligence and virtual reality? Only time will tell, but we do know they’ll be leading the way.


You buy a new tablet, and Microsoft is the operating system. You need to turn in an assignment or make a presentation, and Office is the expected program.

Microsoft is everywhere, and although other companies have tried to mimic its success, they always fall short. 

Through adaptation and innovation, Microsoft continues to lead the way in technology solutions. We can only imagine what the company’s developers have in store for the future.