Microsoft Fluid is a web-based platform that lets you edit and collaborate on components in real-time across multiple Microsoft Office applications. For example, tables and graphs that you would usually find in Office documents are transforming into Fluid components that you can edit without switching applications, free for anyone to use and edit that contain the latest information as they are updated. These components can be edited anywhere, whether that be in an email chain, in Microsoft Teams or eventually in third party applications. Fluid is the next step for Microsoft who are aiming to compete in providing online collaborative software solutions whilst setting a new industry standard.
Fluid is also incredibly fast, corporate vice president of design and research at Microsoft Jon Friedman commented, ‘A lot of what’s gone into Fluid is the concept of being freaky-fast, it’s truly real time for 5,10, 15 or 100 people to do things at the same time.’
Similar to Google Docs, Microsoft’s Fluid Framework is the future of productivity in an accelerated digitally collaborative world. Traditionally, Microsoft were focused on dedicated desktop-focused applications such as Word or Excel, where you would have to open the application, create your document, save it, and share so colleagues could collaborate. Microsoft Fluid is attempting to move away from the traditional means and help Office users achieve a particular task without having to switch to a specific application.
Fluid components will have a special outline indicating they are available to edit on the web, similar to Office collaborative tools such as Microsoft Teams, you’ll see avatars of people who are actively editing components live.
The rollout of Fluid will initially start with Office.com and web Outlook, before gradually appearing in Microsoft Teams in 2021. Eventually Fluid components will be built into all Office applications reshaping the future of productivity and collaboration.
Another feature to add a sense or normality – albeit through technological means is the Teams Events feature on Microsoft Teams. With social-distancing still largely in place, organisations still need to connect and collaborate. The new capabilities within Microsoft Teams help you schedule virtual appointments via Bookings in Teams. Businesses will now be able to schedule and conduct customer meetings through the new Bookings application integrated into Microsoft Teams.
Microsoft Outlook is one of the most used and relied upon tools to help businesses communicate. New features have been introduced to increase productivity. Now, Outlook on the web can help with composing emails using text predictions. The new feature uses intelligent technology to predict what you will type next; it has been designed to help you compose faster and craft polished email messages.
(Information taken from Microsoft, 2020).
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