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Outlook

How Planner Synchronizes its Tasks to Outlook’s Calendar

by Tony Redmond

Many Office 365 tenants use Planner for group-based task management. Generally, the application is OK and has been getting better. Now it can connect to Outlook to synchronize tasks into a user calendar, which then allows users to see tasks alongside their other commitments and print details off if needed. It's an imperfect but acceptable solution to the lack of print capabilities within Planner.

Microsoft Switches Office 365 Groups to Private by Default

by Tony Redmond

Microsoft is switching the default access type for Office 365 Groups to be private. It's a change that you can easily reverse, if you want it groups to be public. The change will be effective for Outlook endpoints first, meaning OWA, Outlook desktops, and the Outlook mobile apps. Later, the other Office 365 apps that create Office 365 Groups might fall into line. Or not, as the case might be.

Choosing the Best Mobile Office 365 Email Client

by Tony Redmond

Companies that move to Office 365 have to decide what mobile email client to use. A native client that uses Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) or Outlook? In the past, the best choice was probably something like the iOS mail app. Now, Outlook is the focus of Microsoft's mobile efforts and it's where all the new functionality appears. EAS is still valuable, just less so than it was before.

How a Free Version of Teams Might Work

by Tony Redmond

Microsoft might be working on a free version of Teams to take on Slack. As it turns out, not many technical changes are needed to transform the full enterprise version of Teams as available inside Office 365 into a limited version that Microsoft can make available for free, leveraging its existing consumer office services like Outlook and OneDrive.

Keeping an Eye on Small but Important Changes in Office 365

by Tony Redmond

A recent vacation meant that I didn't spend as much time as usual monitoring changes inside Office 365. As it happened, lots of change occurred. The large stuff (major updates for Teams and Planner) has already been covered in detail, but many other small but important changes are now active inside Office 365. And, as always, it's the small stuff that can trip you up. Here's what I learned after a weekend of catching up...

MyAnalytics Outlook Add-In Highlights Personal Commitments

by Tony Redmond

MyAnalytics is one of the AI components inside Office 365. Part of the E5 plan or available as an add-on, MyAnalytics is usually seen as a dashboard of weekly activity. Its Outlook add-on can highlight commitments you made in email and remind you about other ways you can work smarter. The only problem is that MyAnalytics is handicapped by a lack of signals...

The Mysterious Files Folder and its Importance to Office 365 Apps

by Tony Redmond

Many differences exist between the on-premises and cloud worlds. The Files folder is one of Office 365's unique features. The folder exists in user mailboxes to hold information about "file-oriented experiences." As it turns out, apps like Delve, SharePoint, and Office 365 Groups like to display file information to users, but they need a fast and efficient way to get to that data. Files is the answer!

Why Teams Needs Better Views

by Tony Redmond

Microsoft Teams is the hot property in Office 365 right now, but sometimes its user interface shows signs of immaturity. For example, when you got back to work after the holidays, you might have seen a ton of new activity to deal with. Email clients have rules, views, and automated assistants to help with the load, but with Teams you have to sort it all out yourself.

Teams Won’t Replace Email but It Can Reduce Email Traffic

by Tony Redmond

Some observers say that Teams will replace email. Well, Teams won't because email still has so many advantages over what Teams offers. But Teams has its own capabilities that will lead it to take some of the traffic currently carried by email. Because of its internal focus, the traffic that moves to Teams is in-house chats, and Teams is a good place for those conversations to be.

Easier Than Ever to Protect Email with Office 365

by Tony Redmond

Office 365 has given its rights management capabilities a complete refresh. Clients deal with protected email better and it's easy to send protected email to people inside and outside your organization, including coverage of consumer email systems like Gmail and Outlook.com. And protected email works on mobile devices too.