What's new on the Office Roadmap - 2015-09-09

Tags: Office 365

Almost a month has gone since Microsoft did an update to the Office Roadmap. But fear no more, it is here stuffed with new and interesting stuff. It's quite a long list this time around. A lot of them are just Office 2016 features that we've known about for some time, but now added to this Roadmap. But also some really interesting FastTrack features, with very sparse descriptions.

Changes 2015-09-09

Now Launched

  • About Me Update and New Authoring Tool: The updated About Me, part of Delve, is now fully launched, including the new Stories authoring tool. Unfortunately totally missed out on communicating this new and actually really great way of composing content - kind of like a mix of Sway and a blog tool.  (Started rolling out in April)
  • Azure AD Sync for Yammer: Finally Yammer is in some way in sync with Azure AD and disabled/deleted accounts will now be suspended in Yammer (new on the roadmap)
  • Major update to Outlook Web App: Outlook on the web has a new UX (from In development)
  • Office 365 Admin app updates: the regular admin app updates, this time support for logging in to multiple tenants
  • Office 365 Admin App Updates for June: the admin app June updates
  • Outlook for iOS opens IRM protected emails: the iOS version of Outlook now supports reading, managing and creating IRM protected e-mails. (new)
  • Search Suggestions in Outlook Web App: type ahead with recommendations in OWA (from rolling out)
  • UserVoice coming to Outlook on the web: provide user feedback to UserVoice directly in the OWA interface (from in development)
  • Weather Bar in Outlook Web App: now shows the local weather in OWA (from in development)

Rolling out

  • Apps for Project Pro for Office 365 write support: write-back support fro Apps for Project Pro for Office 365. Nice enhancement! (from in development)
  • Capacity Management capabilities in Project Online: heatmaps and colors in Project Online for better predictions of resource utilization (from in development)
  • FastTrack | Request Service Onboarding: you can now request setup help directly from within the admin center and get on board the Office 365 train fast and for free. (new)
  • Multiple timeline bars in Project Pro for Office 365: more GUI stuff for all them project managers (from in development)
  • Office 365 Setup Enhancements: improvements in the setup wizard for mail migrations (from in development)
  • Resource Engagement Workflow in Project Online: better management for resource management and planning (from in development)
  • Subscription Management Experience refresh; a new card view when working with subscriptions. In my opinion a far worse experience than before, the card view is just annoying. (from in development)

In Development

  • Add-in deployment via Click-to-Run: a few add-ins/apps can now be deployed via the C2R method (new)
  • Archiving in Office 365 for 3rd-party data: Office 365 will support archiving of Twitter, Yammer, Facebook, LinkedIn, GoogleTalk, DropBox, Box, SalesForce, Chatter, SMS and more and more. This is huge for compliance and regulatory business! Big thumbs up! (new)
  • Automatic Relationship Detection: PivotTables and data and relationships. Some magic for all BI and Excel lovers. (new)
  • Azure departmental template availability: department specific RMS/IRM templates. (new)
  • Click-to-Run manageability gaps addressed for IT-pros: improvements to make the already stream-lined (pun intended) deployment even more streamlined (new)
  • Colorful Office Theme: Not really new, just new on the roadmap. Office (C2R and 2016) has a new default Colorful Theme. I love this small but significant UX change. (new)
  • Create and collaborate on Visio diagrams using Office-like experience: been here a while, previously it was rolling out, now it's not…
  • Dark Theme: an improved Dark theme in Office (C2R and 2016) (new)
  • Data Gathering and Shaping Capabilities: Power Query, previously an add-on, is now included in Excel 2016. (new)
  • Data Loss Protection (DLP) for Office desktop: This is really cool, DLP is not just a cloud feature, it will be on our desktops as well. (new)
  • Deferred Updates: Office 365 commercial customers can defer Office patches to allow more time for testing (new)
  • Easy Enable for Data Analysis Add-Ins: BI, BI, Power this and Power that. All BI features will be enabled by just you thinking about them (new)
  • FastTrack | Data migration to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business: No info yet but probably free migration to SPO (new)
  • FastTrack | Skype for Business Onboarding Expansion: more free stuff (new)
  • FastTrack | Adoption planning services: being just a migration and onboarding consultant is probably not the smartest move at the moment… (new)
  • FastTrack | Azure Rights Management Onboarding: no info (new)
  • FastTrack | Project Online Onboarding: no info (new)
  • FastTrack | Providing the customer success service: no info (new)
  • FastTrack | Yammer Onboarding Expansion: no info (new)
  • Getting Started experience in Visio: no longer rolling out :-(
  • Higher DPI support for 250% and 300%: Makes Office work better on high DPI screens (new)
  • Improved conflict resolution in PowerPoint: making co-authoring even better, and for PowerPoint the conflict resolution has been really bad…
  • Improved sync slider and lean storage footprint on small devices in Outlook 2016: who doesn't like improved sliders!!! (new)
  • Information Rights Management (IRM) protection now added for Visio files: also rolled back from rolling out
  • Keyboard access for Pivot Tables and Slicers in Excel: more Excel BI improvements (new)
  • Keyboard access for Shape Panel in Visio: new key to start use in Visio - F6 (new)
  • Keyword & People search suggestions in Outlook 2016: simpler and more effective search in Outlook 2016 (new)
  • Making it easier to share files and collaborate: one of my fav features in Office 2016 - sharing is easy!! (new)
  • Mark emails as Clutter in Outlook 2016: get rid of those annoying e-mails that you don't care about (new)
  • Math Input Control: for all you math geeks (new)
  • Modern Attachments in Outlook 2016: if sharing is my fav feature this is way better - avoid attachments and sharing at the same time (new)
  • More secure translation options: document translation, research pane and others now use SSL for transport security - about time!!! (new)
  • Multi-factor Authentication: support for MFA in Office client (new)
  • New and Modern Charts: new charts in Excel (new)
  • New Chinese and Japanese Default fonts: Wingdings? (new)
  • New forecasting capabilities: improved Excel 2016 forecasting (new)
  • New timeline view in Project: improved timeline view in Project 2016 (new)
  • Office 365 content pack for Power BI: combine Office 365 usage and user information and get some insights (new)
  • Office 365 detailed usage reports: more and better reports (new)
  • Office 365 Groups: Support compliance requirements: support for Office 365 Groups in the compliance center with retention and holds (new)
  • Office 365 Reporting Dashboard: new aggregated dashboard in the admin center (new)
  • OLAP Connection Support in Power View: OLAP support in PowerView (new)
  • Outlook for the web inline OneDrive attachment preview: better preview options in OWA (new)
  • Pan and zoom while loading large charts/SmartArt:: no explanation needed (new)
  • PivotTable Field Search: search and you will find (new)
  • Quick data linking in Visio; one step connectivity for real time data (new)
  • Quick Shape Formatting: more presets in Office 2016 (new)
  • Read-only mode for Excel: open up an Excel document in SharePoint in read-only mode - what's new with that!?? (new)
  • Real time co-authoring in Word: it's been said before but this is now real time co-authoring for real (new)
  • Refresh stencils and smart shapes in Visio: another Visio thing that was in the rolling out section earlier
  • Set Automatic Replies in Outlook for iOS & Android: get your OOOF's rolling on the fruitphones and droids (new)
  • Smart Lookup for Office: contextual lookups (new)
  • Smart Rename in Power Pivot: rename stuff in PowerPivot, probably really good feature, I don't know (new)
  • Support for multi-selection of Slicer items using touch: Slicers, BI and touch - sounds like a wet dream to many (new)
  • Support for small screen portrait layouts in Outlook 2016: looking forward to testing this on my 7" Windows 10 tablet (new)
  • TellMe: Kindof Cortana but limited to the Office Ribbon :-)  (new)

Moved off to the Previously Released list

  • NDR backscatter protection
  • Office 365 ProPlus user activation management
  • Public Folder calendar and contact access in OWA
  • SharePoint Online storage usage model
  • Skype for Business - Windows Phone
  • Skype for Business Preview - Cloud PBX with PSTN Calling (US Only)
  • Skype for Business Preview - PSTN Conferencing (US Only)
  • Skype for Business Preview - Skype Meeting Broadcast
  • Workload-specific admin roles


That's it. Twas a long post this time…

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About Wictor...

Wictor Wilén is the Nordic Digital Workplace Lead working at Avanade. Wictor has achieved the Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA) - SharePoint 2010, Microsoft Certified Solutions Master (MCSM) - SharePoint  and Microsoft Certified Master (MCM) - SharePoint 2010 certifications. He has also been awarded Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for seven consecutive years.

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