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Microsoft brings SharePoint to iOS

TechCrunch TechCrunch 21/06/2016 Sarah Perez

Microsoft announced this morning the launch of a new mobile app for SharePoint customers aimed at bringing a company’s SharePoint-powered intranet portal and its content to users’ smartphones and tablets. The app is initially available on iOS – meaning it will work on iPhone and iPad – but it will arrive on both Android and Windows platforms before year end, Microsoft says.

The company had said last month that such an app was in the works when it detailed its plans for the future of SharePoint. Used by over 200,000 organizations, SharePoint is often synonymous with the “intranet” – the internal portals businesses run behind the firewall where employees share news, files, collaborate on projects and more. However, what was lacking was a more modern, mobile-first approach to making SharePoint content available to a business’s end users no matter which device they’re using.

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With the new SharePoint app, Microsoft touts that it’s now putting the “intranet in your pocket.” That means users can access company news and announcements, people, sites, content and more from their mobile device. The app works with either SharePoint Online in Office 365 or SharePoint Server 2013 or 2016 in on-premises or hybrid scenarios.

The app features a Sites tab that lets you visit the SharePoint sites you frequent, so you can see recent activity, files, and access these files, lists, pages, and other content on those destinations.

The app also works with other Microsoft mobile apps, the company notes. For example, when you click an Office document in the app, it will launch the corresponding Office mobile app; and when you view a document library on a team site, you’ll be taken to the OneDrive mobile app for iOS.

A Links tab lets you see the full list of sites and portals in your company, as curated by the SharePoint administrators, and a People tab lets you browse through lists of colleagues as well as view their profiles.

Search is another key feature, as it allows you to locate resources by keyword and filter results by sites, files, and people, as well as “content recommendations” which are powered by Microsoft Graph, Microsoft’s machine learning technology.

Though available as public release as opposed to a beta, Microsoft says it’s still accepting feedback about the new app, which can be submitted by in-app Shake, UserVoice, and Twitter posts to @SharePoint and @Office365.

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