Have you stood on a desk recently, without shoes on, to bellow about a recent SharePoint or related technology release? If you answered, “No” – well, then I invite you to review this pitstop and get ready to kick off your kicks. If “Yes” – I then know you learned from the best. There’s a lot to jump up, without shoes on, and shout about this month. This shoeless approach will make more sense as you read on below…
Yes, August 2021 brought some great new offerings: Teams meeting recordings in SharePoint, SharePoint spaces text updates, SharePoint Store modernization, Lists for iOS updates, File cards in Office for Android, Universal print with OneDrive, Yammer Topics API changes, and more.
You’ll find details and screenshots below, including our audible companion: The Intrazone Roadmap Pitstop: August 2021 podcast episode – all to help answer, "What's rolling out now for SharePoint and related technologies into Microsoft 365?"
In the podcast episode, I chat with Vesa Juvonen (LinkedIn | Twitter), a principal program manager on the SharePoint team focused on all things OneDrive and SharePoint development - and an excellent Microsoft 365 developer community lead. You'll hear Vesa describe the recent modernization of the SharePoint app store, plus SharePoint Framework updates, and insights to what it all means for Microsoft Teams.
All features listed below began rolling out to Targeted Release customers in Microsoft 365 as of August 2021 (possibly early September 2021).
Inform and engage with dynamic employee experiences
Build your intelligent intranet on SharePoint in Microsoft 365 and get the benefits of investing in business outcomes – reducing IT and development costs, increasing business speed and agility, and up-leveling the dynamic, personalized, and welcoming nature of your intranet.
Teams meeting recordings are now saved to OneDrive and SharePoint
With this switch away from storage in Azure Media Services, meeting recordings become more integrated with Microsoft 365, which equates to faster availability of the meeting on-demand playback, improved sharing controls including external sharing capabilities, improved video management, advanced compliance, and more.
The following video "What's New for Microsoft Teams Meeting Recordings" by Joe McClanahan from the Stream team gets into all the details:
SharePoint spaces text and annotation styles
SharePoint spaces is an immersive page style which lets you create and share, secure and extensible mixed reality experiences. Building a space is a lot like building a modern site -- that is, you create the space and choose options such as structure, background, and theme. Add web parts for your 3D objects, 360° images and videos, 2D images and text, and more.
This month, the SharePoint spaces Text web part got a broader canvas for you to adjust the look and feel of your text. You can now choose from various styles, bold it, adjust colors, alignment, and more. It’s a three-dimensional rich-text editor, and I think you’re gonna like it.
SharePoint Framework (SPFx) and the modernized experience for SharePoint Store
By using the SharePoint Framework, you can extend the user experience with custom web parts and extensions in SharePoint. And now it gets easier to both acquire and deploy apps in SharePoint.
We are pleased to announce first step on this journey with the modernized experience for SharePoint Store and acquire experience on the SharePoint side. The new tabbed layout for SharePoint apps, shown below, makes it easier and faster to get apps from a variety of sources.
This is great news for developers, partners, and customers. You can easily find more popular apps build on SharePoint Framework on the store homepage. You can also search for an app in the search bar or select a category on the left to scroll through available apps.
If you are an admin of a tenant-level app catalog, you can deploy business apps directly. Go to SharePoint Store from the app catalog site or from the app request you received, you can choose to Add on the app details page, you will then go through the required deployment steps.
Teamwork updates across SharePoint team sites, OneDrive, and Microsoft Teams
Microsoft 365 is a universal toolkit for teamwork – to give you the right tools for the right task, along with common services to help you seamlessly work across applications. SharePoint is the intelligent content service that powers teamwork – to better collaborate on proposals, projects, and campaigns throughout your organization – with integration across Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, Yammer, Stream, Planner and much more.
Two new features for the Microsoft Lists for iOS app
Adjust a columns width:
The resizing of columns gives you the ability to control the information density on your iPhone or iPad screen. Simply tap and expand or contrast the width to see more, or less, information.
Search via QR code:
This enables a unique way to discover more about an item - say something like a mouse you want to check out from your IT team. Just start up the Lists app for iOS, go to the list, search for that item by scanning the device QR code, the corresponding list item gets highlighted, open the item, and update the entry. Done.
File Cards in the Office app for Android
File Cards offer a rich and modern way of consuming your Office content with inline previews, contextual information, such as the person who shared the file with you, and quick actions on the card that allow you to share and keep the file offline.
As part of this rollout, File Cards with previews will be available for your Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and PDF files stored in your OneDrive accounts.
Note: Word and PDF files stored directly on your Android device will be supported in a future update
Universal Print integration with OneDrive
Admins can reduce or eliminate on-premises print infrastructure and move their organizations to serverless printing. Now people across the organization can access a printer in the cloud from anywhere with an internet connection and securely print over Zero Trust Networks without the need for a VPN connection.
This feature allows users to print directly to their organization's printers from OneDrive web for work or school - without needing to install any printers on their devices. People can select a document and click Print . They see a print dialog where they can search for and select any printer in their organization that they have access to.
Yammer Topics API changes
this is an API FYI. Yammer is integrating with and adopting Viva Topics to make community knowledge more accessible across an organization and support a consistent experience in Microsoft 365. Viva Topics brings together knowledge from across Microsoft 365. Knowledge sources include SharePoint, Outlook, Yammer and more.
To achieve this, Yammer will need to make some changes to its Topic APIs. Some API changes apply to all Yammer networks while others apply only to networks in Native Mode. I'll link to a helpful document that gets into the specifics.
Nonetheless, the changes enable you to continue to take advantage of what's going on in Yammer, through Topics, especially when you leverage the Yammer APIs for custom integration and extension to the value of this knowledge network as it coalesces.
Reading Progress in Microsoft Teams
Reading Progress is a free tool designed to support educators in creating personalized reading experiences that build confidence and reading fluency in their students. Built into Microsoft Teams Assignments, Reading Progress passages are easy to create and differentiate for impactful instruction.
Reading Progress saves teachers time while capturing audio/video reading fluency. It also helps students practice reading out loud in private. Reading Progress also provides insights and analytics to educators. This works on all platforms, including Desktop, Mac, web, iOS, and Android.
To put it into a use case perspective, here's a nice quote from an educator in Florida: “Reading Progress takes all the nerves out of my student’s fluency checks. They are comfortable with its approach, and I am able to collect data quicker and more efficiently than ever before. Now, I can devote more time to differentiated instruction rather than individualized assessments.” -- that's from Joe Merrill, educator at Lake Park Elementary, in Lake Park, Florida.
September 2021 teasers
Psst, still here? Still scrolling the page looking for more roadmap goodness? If so, here is a few teasers of what’s to come to production next month…
… shhh, tell everyone.
Helpful, ongoing change management resources
Thanks for tuning in and/or reading this episode/blog of the Intrazone Roadmap Pitstop – August 2021 (blog/podcast). We are open to your feedback in comments below to hear how both the Roadmap Pitstop podcast episodes and blogs can be improved over time.
Engage with us. Ask those questions that haunt you. Push us where you want and need to get the best information and insights. We are here to put both our and your best change management foot forward.
Stay safe out there on the road’map, and thanks for listening and reading.
Mark Kashman – senior product manager (SharePoint/Lists) | Microsoft)
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