SharePoint 2013 Work 'Out-of-box', New Features 'SkyDrive Pro, Office Marketplace, Yammer' and More

Microsoft detailed the new features coming to SharePoint Server 2013 and SharePoint including changes to their core search, storage and social-networking capabilities.Microsoft also revealed that SharePoint is now seeing "over 135 million people and 4000 partners delivering innovative solutions."Highlights of the new features:SharePoint experience is re-designed to be clean and simple, and provides quick access […]

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Microsoft detailed the new features coming to SharePoint Server 2013 and SharePoint including changes to their core search, storage and social-networking capabilities.

Microsoft also revealed that SharePoint is now seeing "over 135 million people and 4000 partners delivering innovative solutions."

Highlights of the new features:

  • SharePoint experience is re-designed to be clean and simple, and provides quick access to your newsfeed, documents and sites with engaging new experiences for saving documents, editing lists, sharing content, theming sites. And if you want to take SharePoint with you on the go, "you can share documents and update your newsfeed from your mobile phone or tablet to keep you connected from virtually anywhere," Microsoft said.

    The new SharePoint 2013 can be used as an out-of-box application whenever possible. "We encourage you not to modify it which could add complexity, performance and upgradeability and to focus your energy on working with users and groups to understand how to use SharePoint to improve productivity and collaboration and identifying and promoting best practices in your organization."

  • Pervasive Social Networking - Microsoft is expanding on SharePoint's collaboration tools by adding rich new microblogging, newsfeed, community and other social features. Pervasive following of people, sites, documents and hashtags across SharePoint means you can see and act on the latest information in one place. Microsoft says, they'll expand the connections between Yammer and SharePoint and other Microsoft technologies.
  • SkyDrive Pro makes it easy it to work with your documents in SharePoint - save, sync, share and collaborate are all drop-dead simple. The name conveys "the simplicity and increased consistency with our SkyDrive consumer cloud service while reinforcing the "Pro" features of SharePoint like social networking, collaboration, search, metadata, workflow and compliance," Microsoft explains.

    Click "Sync" on a SharePoint library and you'll get the documents offline in the Windows Explorer, Office applications and more. SkyDrive Pro is part of both the SharePoint service in Office 365 and server.

    Check the bottom of this article for more on how SkyDrive Pro works.

  • SharePoint Sites - The new "Sites Hub" shows all of your sites in one place - "whether they're sites that you have created or followed or sites that've been promoted by your organization or our new recommendation platform." The new site experience is streamlined and team collaboration tools now include "new team newsfeeds, team OneNote notebooks with real-time co-authoring, task timelines and Exchange team mailboxes."
  • Projects for Everyone - Microsoft added task management capabilities to any team site and a personal view of all your SharePoint and Outlook tasks in one place. For project managers, "we've made it easy to sync a site's tasks list with Project Pro or add Project Online to get a view of all your organization's projects and tasks," Microsoft said.
  • FAST Search and Recommendations - "Combining the next generation FAST technology with learnings from Microsoft Research and Bing we provide powerful navigation of documents, sites, people, conversations, videos, reports and more through a new extensible query framework," Microsoft explains.
  • Cloud App Model and Marketplace - The new SharePoint makes it much easier to build, buy, deploy and manage applications via the new Cloud App Model for the Office 2013 Wave using web standards like HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, REST, OAuth and OData. "The back-end can be anywhere but we streamlined access to Azure services. We built in the new "Napa" web-based development from the Visual Studio team right inside the SharePoint browser experience."

    Microsoft also introduced a new "Office Marketplace" for partner solutions and enabling you to create a Corporate Galleries to manage and promote the solutions you build and buy for SharePoint and Office.

  • Dynamic Publishing - SharePoint 2013 supports designs coming from 3rd-party tools in HTML (vs. primarily low-level ASP.NET templates) and simplifies delivering dynamic sites through the new FAST content-by-query platform, content re-use, integrated translation, new video features and more.
  • In-Place Governance and Compliance - Finally, Microsoft introducing a new unified policy management and eDiscovery solution that works across the new releases of SharePoint, Exchange and Lync without expensive and low fidelity duplication of content.

With SharePoint 15 "we take the next step in investments for both Office 365 and on-premises SharePoint. New architectures like Velocity Distributed Caching , SQL Server Sparse Columns and Shredded Content Storage allow us to support more users, content and events with lower SQL Server I/O and better overall performance. Our new Profile Storage and Sync system increases directory freshness and supports our new social networking features. Finally, major tuning of our Page Rendering Framework reduces server-side rendering 50% and improves client-side rendering with the largest gains coming in Office 365 where we add Content Delivery Network support. Again, we'll cover a lot more here in the future."

In SharePoint 2013, Microsoft changed My Site. It's now your own personal spaceship - a tool to help you navigate the collections of people, data and content stored in SharePoint. We've split My Site into three areas or "hubs," each one orbiting around the most important thing in the SharePoint universe: You. These three hubs are available in a global navigation bar at the top of every page in SharePoint and Office 365.

The first hub, called "Newsfeed," is focused on people and activity. The main page of this hub features the SharePoint newsfeed, and allows you to add your own personal SharePoint apps, like Tasks.

The second hub is "SkyDrive Pro," a place to store your files in the cloud.

The final hub is "Sites," which will help you keep track of the SharePoint locations most valuable to getting things done.

To power these hubs, "we've introduced a concept called following. In SharePoint 2013, you can follow people, documents, sites and tags. When something is important or interesting, follow it. We'll show you information about the things you've followed in your newsfeed. Also, we'll keep track of those things and give you easy access to them from the three hubs," explains Microsoft.

In Office 365, Newsfeed, SkyDrive and Sites are joined by links to other products in the service, like the Outlook, Calendar, and People hubs from the Outlook Web App.

Use the "Newsfeed," "SkyDrive," and "Sites" hubs to guide you as you explore the brave new world of SharePoint 2013.

You can try the new SharPoint Online in the Office 365 Preview or SharePoint Server 2013 Preview here.

Here is how SkyDrive Pro works?

Creating new documents in SkyDrive Pro is simple: start a Word Document, Excel Workbook, PowerPoint Slideshow, or OneNote Notebook directly from your browser, or create a document in any of the Office applications and save it directly to SkyDrive Pro.

You can also keep your label designs, market analysis PDFs, and quarterly sales reports in SkyDrive Pro by saving there directly or dragging the files into SkyDrive Pro in a web browser.

Once your documents are in SkyDrive Pro, it's easy to see details and work with them. Right click the row or click the document callout button to quickly see more information about a document and take actions like opening, editing, and changing properties. With Office Web Apps, you can view an interactive preview of your Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents. You'll also see who the file is shared with and be able to share it with others.

With co-authoring (available in Office 2010 and later and in the Office Web Apps), everyone can work on the same document without having to deal with outdated copies or combining multiple files.

SkyDrive Pro always automatically saves the last version of the document that you edited, so you can always return to your previous copy. In addition to your own documents, SkyDrive Pro lets you find documents you care about across SharePoint by showing a list of your followed documents.

SkyDrive Pro and SharePoint revolve around you so it's easy to find your way around.

In Office 365, you'll also find a list of recent documents, so you can quickly find that marketing analysis report that started writing with Armando yesterday. You'll find this list everywhere you log into Office 365, including SkyDrive Pro in the browser, and the Office Apps on your desktop or mobile device.

You can sync SkyDrive Pro to your local computer, so you can work on that important presentation even when you don't have access to the internet.

Finally, you can share your work with everyone in your organization; drag the presentation into the "Shared with Everyone" folder. Every file placed here will automatically be visible and editable by everyone in your organization; no need to individually share them with each person. You can also post the document in the newsfeed, or send the link out by email.