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What did we learn about Microsoft in December?

By 18th December 2018 January 29th, 2019 No Comments

We don’t talk the talk…we walk the walk!

Our learning inspiration this month is Mother Teresa who said, “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples”. How true is this in relation to technology adoption?! It takes more than one person to make change happen, but a few people can create a ripple effect through a cascade model, like a champions’ network.

As Microsoft swots we always have our ears to the ground – or rather the web! – to find out what’s new with Microsoft, so we can cascade our findings to our clients’ employees and you. So, what did we learn about Microsoft in December?

  • Probably the biggest news this month – Microsoft is overhauling its Windows 10 visual icons and they will be known as new-look Office 365 icons. So far, 10 icons have been developed and more are being created in 2019.
  • From January 2019, Microsoft is adding live captions/ subtitles to PowerPoint thanks to a real-time, AI-powered voice translation feature. What a great way to include the Adaptive Technology community.
  • From this month to March 2019, Microsoft will be rolling out a feature where new files posted in Yammer Groups within Office 365 will be stored in SharePoint, in the area associated with that Group. This won’t impact existing files, or files in unconnected groups or private messages.
  • You can now have an organisation-wide team within Microsoft Teams for up to 1,000 users. Up to 1,000 active users will be added as team members automatically. Loving the thought of one organisation collaboration!
  • Many organisations are using both Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business but previously presence wasn’t fully aligned. It now is for small Office 365 tenants, where users have a ‘coexistence’ mode.

And that’s a wrap for December. We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our Microsoft updates this year as much as we’ve enjoyed researching all the latest news. It wouldn’t be an ‘end of year’ post though if we didn’t round up our top Microsoft updates of 2018! So, here’s our favourites…

  1. Any feature that has been added to Microsoft Teams has had a thumbs’ up from us. Without a doubt, Teams has been our hero app in 2018. It’s now where we start, spend and finish our working day. Who would have thought that a year ago?!
  2. New features that have made our lives easier and got our jobs done quicker, have been a winner. We can now create emails and presentations through dictation. Documents autosave in OneDrive and SharePoint. And, you can get threaded comments in Excel. Most impressively, Office 365 Usage Analytics tells us how we spend the day, so we can be smarter about how we spend our time.
  3. The mastery of AI-powered features has blown our minds. You have facial detection, speech-to-text transcription and speaker time-code capabilities in Live Events, in Teams and Stream. And now you can add sub-titling to PowerPoint. What next in 2019?

Thank you, Microsoft! In 2018 you’ve given us so many new features to make our working lives easier and we can’t wait to find out what you’re going to do in 2019…