Microsoft unveils new Office 365 features at SharePoint Conference, Satya Nadella announces management shake-up

Microsoft has unveiled a number of key new features of its Office 365 online productivity suite during the company’s annual SharePoint Conference, as chief executive Satya Nadella announced a management shake-up.

Many of the new features, unveiled by Microsoft corporate vice president Jeff Teper, are powered by new social graph software called Office Graph, which constantly analyses content, interactions and activity streams to help users find the most relevant content.

One new app, code-named Oslo, shows users the most relevant Office 365 content across SharePoint, Exchange, Lync, Yammer and Office.

A second feature, titled Groups, brings together user profiles, conversations, calendars, emails and files for groups of employees collaborating on projects.

Another new feature is called Inline Social, which uses SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business to store social conversations alongside documents.

The company also announced the release of an Office 365 Video portal where businesses will be able to upload, store and stream corporate videos in a secure manner.

For app developers, the company released new Office 365 software development kits (SDKs) for both Windows 8 and Android, along with new APIs for files, people, email, calendar and tasks and enhanced APIs for PowerPoint and Outlook.

For IT support staff, the company is promising improved data-loss prevention, as well as improved integration with Microsoft’s OneDrive for Business cloud storage system and Yammer enterprise social network.

“The new Office 365 experiences powered by cloud, social, mobile and big data technologies enable people and teams to find the right connections and most relevant insights to get more done,” Teper says.

Meanwhile, Nadella announced a shake-up of several key management positions in the company.

In an open letter to staff, Nadella announced Skype boss Tony Bates is leaving the company.

“Tony came to the company via the Skype acquisition, where he was CEO of Skype, and did a great job of successfully landing that team and continuing to build the service in a high impact way… He also stepped up to the new opportunity of leading the Business Development and Evangelism team over the past eight months.

“Eric Rudder will serve as interim leader responsible for Business Development and Evangelism, while continuing in his current role.”

Nadella also announced the consolidation of the company’s marketing efforts under the leadership of new chief marketing officer Chris Capossela.

“I have decided we need a single leader running marketing for the company, and have asked Chris Capossela to take on this role as EVP and Chief Marketing Officer, reporting to me.

“This change in marketing structure provides an opportunity for Mark Penn to play a new leadership role at the company as EVP, Chief Strategy Officer.

“Tami Reller agrees with the go-forward approach of a single marketing leader and will support Chris through his transition into his new role.”


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