SharePoint innovations transform content collaboration with mixed reality and AI

Leipzig, 05/21/2018 – With over 400,000 customer organizations, SharePoint leads the industry in content services and collaboration. SharePoint pioneered combining document management and web publishing, bringing enterprise content management to the cloud and infusing AI into content collaboration with the Microsoft Graph. Today, Microsoft takes the next, innovative step forward with SharePoint spaces.


Addition of web parts to a SharePoint space (Source: Microsoft)

SharePoint spaces bring immersive, mixed reality experiences to anyone, on any device

Mixed reality is one of the most important technological trends in the modern workplace, with the power to transform work for everyone, from the executive suite to the front line. Earlier this month, Microsoft announced two powerful mixed reality applications: Microsoft Remote Assist and Microsoft Layout. Today, Microsoft unveiled SharePoint spaces—immersive, mixed reality experiences—which enable you to view and interact with content from every angle and visualize and manipulate data and product models in real-time. SharePoint mainstreams mixed reality, empowering everyone to create visually compelling spaces that are available to anyone, on any device.

Mixed reality experiences immerse you, focus your attention, engage your senses, and spark your curiosity and imagination to unlock new scenarios for communication, learning, and collaboration, including:

  • Recruiting and onboarding​—Recruits or new employees can learn about a company in a compelling, 360-degee virtual welcome and orientation, including a 360-degree video message from leadership. They can navigate the campus or building with 3D maps, learn the organizational structure with an interactive organization chart, or explore rich information about coworkers and the organization’s products.

  • Learning—With mixed reality, learning comes to life by captivating your focus and attention. Gain broad perspective with a panoramic view of a topic and learning objectives. Then explore personalized, relevant, and dynamic content. Ignite your curiosity by discovering new insights, and dive deep into topics that matter to you. Learn not just by reading or watching, but by experiencing, with your senses engaged.

  • Product development—Create an inspiring space for your team to spark innovation. Surround yourself with experts to look at data, content, and processes from every angle. Explore a prototype in 3D to identify new opportunities, attach annotations, and visualize improvements.

Until now, it has been prohibitively expensive and complex to develop customized mixed reality apps to address these and other business scenarios, and to make mixed reality apps broadly accessible in the workplace, because most require costly headsets.

SharePoint spaces are infused with Microsoft AI, unlocking knowledge from Microsoft Graph and driving rich, personalized experiences that let you explore connections between people and content, gain insights from data, and find relevant information and expertise. SharePoint spaces are integrated and extensible. You can augment a space with content from across Microsoft 365 and from other data sources and services. You can customize a space to reflect your brand. And you can build new capabilities for SharePoint spaces with the SharePoint Framework.

SharePoint brings AI to content collaboration

SharePoint powers content collaboration in Office 365, and Microsoft has infused SharePoint with AI. So, when you store your files, images, and data in Office 365, AI unlocks valuable content and enables new scenarios. AI builds an understanding of what you work on, how you work, and how your colleagues’ work relates to you. AI uses this intelligence to process the ever-growing quantities of information, helping to prioritize what matters to you in personalized, time-saving experiences.

Personalized, intelligent search in the SharePoint mobile app—When you need expertise, content, apps, or resources when you’re on the go, the new Find tab in the SharePoint mobile app is a great place to start looking.

You’ll see links to documents and sites you were recently working on, across your devices. You’ll see recommendations of sites, files, news, and people that have been identified as relevant to you. You might find what you need without having to search at all. And when you perform a search, the results are refined as you type, returning personalized results based on your role, your work, and the people you work with. Search history and queries curated by your organization make it easy to find things. And instant answers to your questions showcase the power of AI, transforming search into action.

  • New, personalized Office.com—Office.com saves you time, so you can start work and get back to what matters most to you. In the Recommended section, you’ll see files that AI has identified as most likely to need your attention. In the Discover section, you can see the files your colleagues are working on and files available to you that you may not even know existed. AI also unlocks the value of complex content, such as images and videos, providing new opportunities to automate image- and video-based processes.

  • Enhanced image capabilities—More and more content is image-based, and AI unlocks the value of photos stored in Office 365. AI can determine where photos were taken, recognize objects, and extract text in photos. You can search for images as easily as you search for documents. We’ve also made it easier than ever to capture photos, documents, whiteboards, and business cards with the new Scan button in the OneDrive mobile app. As a business user, you can configure OneDrive to upload photos automatically to Office 365.

  • Cognitive services for business process automation—Microsoft Flow can be used to streamline processes that integrate cognitive services, including geolocation, image recognition, text extraction, machine translation, and sentiment analysis. Now, anyone can harness the power of AI to transform business processes.

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