Microsoft continues to develop their Office 365 Suite of applications with their latest 2016 incarnation presently being rolled out worldwide.
So What’s In It For You?
Fortunately the look and feel has not been greatly altered, so adjusting to the upgrade is quite a simple affair. The most notable difference will be that the Office 365 Portal has a new theme that closely matches that of the new Office 2016 and opening documents online will utilise the new Office 2016 Web Applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
Sharing and collaboration of documentation is now easier with a new Share Button on the Office Ribbon, allowing you to immediately Publish a file and invite any user to view and collaborate from within a working document.
There is now tighter integration with OneDrive and SharePoint Online with OneDrive now compatible with most mobile and Tablet PC’s, allowing you to View and Edit documents across Windows, Android and Apple devices.
A new application called Sway has been added, allowing you to quickly create and share presentations online which resemble an ebook rather a traditional presentation slide.
Beyond that you can be comforted in the knowledge that your Services, Software and Data will now be running on the latest, secure reliable and feature platforms which importantly for Australian customers is running in Australian Datacentres, overcoming many data sovereignty concerns.
Microsoft have recently been independently audited to ensure compliance with ISO 27001 and ISO 27018 Cloud Security and Privacy standards.
For subscribers on a small to medium business plan that includes desktop versions of Microsoft Office, Office 2016 is already available for download via the Office 365 Portal.
From February 2016 onwards Office 2016 Pro Plus is scheduled to be available to Enterprise plan clients as well.
The big kicker for the new Office 365 is their new premium E5 plan which is targeted to larger enterprise clients. The new E5 plan includes almost all the new features that Microsoft have crammed into their entire Office 365 platform including the new Skype for Business Cloud PBX service and Microsoft’s Power BI Pro service. These services were previously paid add-on products and are now included as part of the E5 plan.
The Skype for Business Cloud PBX service has the ability to replace your entire existing telephony system, running all your voice and video over your Internet connection. Power BI (Business Intelligence) is a collection of advanced analytic services allowing you to find and analyse data in a visual format.