Working Mobile Just Got A Whole Lot Easier
I mentioned this new application in a blog a few months back, when Microsoft was still beta-testing the new features. The app, partnered with an office 365 subscription, gives you full access to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint applications in a mobile friendly version. You are able to create, edit, collaborate, upload and save works from all of these platforms, in an easy to use way for those on-the-go last minute projects.
This has been a long time coming for Microsoft, as they have been losing ground to other applications such as the Google's Docs, Sheets, and Slides that collaborate with Google Drive, giving you cloud-based access to your documents. Microsoft is combating this by enabling the use of third-party cloud storage for your documents. These third-party clouds include Google Drive, Dropbox, iCloud, and Box.
Microsoft has also put a heavy focus on making these applications as user friendly and mobile friendly as possible. The all-in-one app allows you to quickly switch between the apps, such as working from Excel to Word to write a report on a revenue statement or anything along those lines.
In this app, you will also find that Microsoft Office Lens has been incorporated, allowing you to take pictures of documents, notes, whiteboards, etc. These photos can then be straightened, cropped, edited and turned into working files such as PDF files.
For All of The College Students
Have you ever tried to voice-to-text an essay? You know, say it to your phone, your phone types it for you. Then you simply email it to yourself, copy and paste into a word document and with a little editing and formatting your are done? You barely even have to touch the keyboard. I know, genius right? I won't take credit for the idea, I heard about after I had already graduated.
Microsoft is expected to introduce Microsoft Word Diction to the app in the near future. This is essentially a Microsoft Word enabled talk-to-text feature so you don't have to worry about the copy and paste part. They even have a command bar to use for punctuation, meaning less editing in the end.
This new Office 365 will help you with more than just your essays though. You know how much of a pain it is to create a presentation on an essay? You just got done typing a 20+ page document, and now you have to create a slideshow that goes with it to present in front of the class. With the Microsoft Office 365 app, you can create outlines for PowerPoint presentations, that will automatically divide into slides to get you started on the go. Simply create a list of bullet points that you want to highlight as you are reading through your paper and these will automatically be created into slides to give you an outline. I am sure that Microsoft will also offer a formatting feature, allowing you to add some style and color to your slides instantly, without having to individually edit them.
Excel Gets an Upgrade
If you have used Microsoft Excel in the past, as many of us have, then you know that it has a format that is optimal for wider screens to make use of the rows and columns. This was an obstacle for Microsoft in making it mobile friendly and responsive on a horizontal screen. They solved this by creating a cards view for Microsoft Excel. This cards view allows you to switch between cells, shown as cards, allowing you to see the referenced cells, referencing cells, and make changes accordingly. This makes it much easier on mobile to utilize functions and formulas, check for errors and make edits to documents on the go.
I still wouldn't recommend trying to do a full financial audit of a company on your cellphone, but when in a pinch, this allows you to get an overview of the document, make notes, and improve your overall efficiency without having to boot up a laptop.
Don't Get Too Excited
All of this sounds great, but not everything is fully functioning yet. Even though the app is out of beta and available to the public, there are still some things being worked on. Many of these enhanced features are still being tested and are not available yet. The demos that are shown in the video look to be quite promising though.
I recommend downloading the app and trying it out. Get familiar with switching between documents, saving and editing them, and utilizing the cloud features. As you familiarize yourself with these, it will be much easier to use the new features when they are released.