Microsoft 365 is a new service that aims to make Office applications, such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint, much smarter. Available April 21, this is a new version of Office 365 and seeks to make the Microsoft applications you use already more relevant to your life.
Microsoft presented this update remotely to journalists on Monday, March 30, in a video that often reminded the press that it was not intentionally selling user data to other companies, such as Facebook and Google. .
Microsoft 365: price and availability
Staying at the same price as Office 365, Microsoft 365 will start at $ 6.99 per month, with a family subscription of $ 9.99 available, which will allow up to six users. While many Microsoft 365 features will be available at launch, two new Family Safety and Teams for Consumers apps won’t be available until later this year.
Microsoft 365: teams for the rest of us
Microsoft is a big fan of its commercial team chat software teams (it’s like Slack, but made for Office and more) that it deploys a version for families and friends. It will be available from this summer and will be launched in the fall.
Think of teams as a more powerful group discussion for the family. For example, Microsoft has shown a family text message thread filled with team benefits. You can share sensitive financial information, using end-to-end encryption and 2-factor authentication, with The Safe, which collects financial information, passwords, and more.
Microsoft is promoting Teams for Consumers as a productive chat app, with a dashboard for each group chat that collects all of the shared files, so you can stop scrolling up and up. There’s also a group calendar in the dashboard, so you can get an idea of everyone’s upcoming availability.
Teams will also facilitate delegation, with shared lists of tasks that you can assign.
It will also have a group video call function, which works on iOS and Android. Finally, a gallery view allows you to have a better overview of all the photos you have shared.
Microsoft 365: Word gets the editor
Those who continue to grow as writers will receive a lot of help from the editor, a new mega-tool in Word that helps in many different ways. It looks a lot like the Grammarly app (whose creators say explicitly they don’t sell your data), starting with suggestions for rewriting full sentences. It also progresses by offering inclusive language suggestions, giving writers non-sexist expressions to use. In the presentation, the editor proposed an “unwritten agreement” as an alternative to drafting a “gentleman’s agreement”.
The new Editor menu (a pane on the right side of the screen) streamlines all of the suggestions you’ve been given, giving a quick overview of these changes. The editor can also provide advice to remind students to provide citations if their text seems a little too close to something that is already publicly available.
The editor will also work in Outlook when you write emails, and there will even be a Chrome extension when you write elsewhere.
Microsoft 365: PowerPoint presentations should look better and sound better
While many prefer Apple’s Keynotes alternative, a new set of 150 animated backgrounds coming to PowerPoint in Microsoft 365 should liven up your next discussions. An example of an image was an aerial plane of calm waters, which looked like an indoor pool. Another looked like polygonal bitmaps, probably for more technical speech.
Presenting to a group is so difficult that I took a public speaking course in college. From now on, the PowerPoint Presenter Coach will have more tools at your disposal. You are alerted – halfway through – if you speak in a monotonous voice (which is a quick way to put your audience to sleep), and suggest to you “Try to vary your pitch and focus on the words keys “and congratulate you once you’ve adapted this suggestion.
In addition, PowerPoint will now offer a summary of how well you presented and will tell you how quickly you delivered the talk, how much data you have pasted into your script, and what information you need if you used too much. “ums” and “uhhs”.
Microsoft 365: track your spending and lots of other data
Microsoft has created big tools for those of us who already use Excel to keep our books in good shape. Money in Excel, is a new set of features that allows users to import bank transactions and balances (from over 10,000 financial institutions), by linking accounts to Excel.
This way you can see the line-by-line breakdowns of your spending across multiple banks, all in one spreadsheet. Sample charts included breakdowns of your monthly spending from the previous month, and a pie chart showing how and where you spend your money. It all sounds like the feature sets that some, but not all, banks offer.
Oh, and Excel will also work with data outside of your bank. Microsoft has added 100 data set topics and a set of new models, so you can track things like your nutritional activity and add columns for the different aspects you want to track. Calorie counters take note: Excel can automatically recognize items such as pancakes and intelligently count the amount of calories and other vitamins you get from each item.
The presentation showed a “university decision support” model, which allowed parents and college hunters to compare maps and other details of universities and colleges side by side.
Microsoft 365: Outlook brings external calendars
Just like the main calendar apps preinstalled on phones, Microsoft 365 offers better integration with outdoor calendars because we have personal calendars in addition to the ones we have for work.
And while it may not seem that important, it will help your Outlook calendar to better reflect your actual availability, for those with whom you are trying to make plans.
Microsoft 365: Family Safety helps keep an eye
Coming later this year, Microsoft 365 Family Safety apps on iOS and Android will help parents track where everyone is, across all platforms, and help parents track the way kids spend their time. . Yes, while iPhones have the Find My tool to track devices, Family Safety will show all your devices on the family account on a map, so you can see where they are and even receive notifications about their arrival and their departure. Family members concerned about their privacy should be relived to know that you can opt out.
Family Safety helps with driving, so parents can get detailed statistics on how a car travels (and how often a phone is used) while someone is driving. Top speed and sudden break will also be taken into account.
In the presentation, we also saw how Family Safety will give parents an overview of the games children play on Xbox, and give them the ability to set restrictions on the time played and the allowed maturity levels of these games.
Microsoft Edge also gets new tips
I often have too many tabs open, and I don’t really know a way to manage it without closing them. Fortunately, Edge offers a solution. If you activate the vertical tabs, you will see a list view (on the left side of your screen) of all the tabs open in this window which shows a lot more page title for each tab you know, the things you can’t read when all your tabs are just the icons for each website.
There is also Smart Copy, which recognizes how difficult it is to share highly formatted web objects, such as tables. The presentation provided an example with a user using crosshairs to highlight a table and then pasting that table into an email where it appeared correctly formatted.
Edge also gets improvements focused on privacy and security. Edge Tracker Protection will keep your information safe from sites you have not visited, while its password monitor tells you if you are using login information on the dark web and then provides a quick and easy way to go to the password management page of this site, so you can change it. Chromium and Firefox recently introduced similar functionality.
Additionally, Bookmarks in Collection mode arrive in the iOS and Android Edge apps.
Microsoft 365 Outlook
The move from Office 365 to Microsoft 365 seems to be important enough to prevent the remaining Office 365 subscribers from switching to Google G Suite. That being said, Google’s apps are still free, which we call in the technical press “killer functionality” for many.
Families, students in particular, have the most reason to keep Microsoft 365. Its editing function sounds like an invaluable tool, and the new money management tips in Excel could be a powerful way for families to teach children how to manage their money. In addition, the upcoming family safety and team apps look like effective tools for parents trying to rule a chaotic household.