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Organize and share work using Boards in Office Delve

Office Delve is a new, innovative experience to discover and explore content that's relevant to the work users and their teams are doing. Using Office Graph, an intelligent fabric that applies machine learning to content and interactions occurring in Office 365, Delve helps users get back to pertinent documents, discover relevant content that has been shared, and search for information related to subjects users care about.

Now, Microsoft is taking the next step by making it easier to organize all the valuable content that gets surfaced in Delve. Microsoft has introduced a new feature in Delve called boards that help users organize content, so it's readily accessible and easy to share with others.

In Delve, users can use boards to group together and share related documents. For example, users can create a board to collect and organize all documents related to a specific project a team is working on. Everyone in the organization can view and contribute to an existing board or create a board—but they can only see and open documents that they have permission to access.

Adding or discovering new ones is easy

When working with others, information tends to get scattered. And that's OK. Organizing around ideas and topics with boards is easy and powerful. Just click + Add to board, enter a board name or pick from a list of existing boards.

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Any card users see in Delve can be added to a board—documents, sites, videos and more.

Boards allow users to discover content related to topics and projects and make it easy to return to the content that matters most to them. From within Delve, users can search for a board, follow it to stay informed and discover other boards—all without having to know or remember where individual pieces of content live.

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Boards are always at hand. Add or discover new ones or follow them to stay up-to-date. 

Collaborative, open gathering of ideas

Every board is a unique collection of ideas and information that others can discover and contribute to. Just as any view within Delve, boards only surface the content users have permissions to see.

Collaborating gets easier too. Users simply share the URL of a board with their team, or click Send a link directly from the board, which remains fresh as the team works on and updates those documents over time.

Content types supported by Delve Boards

Delve surfaces relevant content based on insights delivered through Office Graph. Any content discovered in Delve can be added to boards. As Delve rolls out to Office 365 customers in the First Release program, Office Graph incorporates signals across Office 365 and content primarily from OneDrive for Business, SharePoint Online team sites and the new Office 365 Video portal. In the coming months Delve will incorporate additional signals and content including email attachments and Yammer social newsfeeds.

Boards will be included as part of Delve as it rolls out to customers in the Office 365 First Release program. (With this option, users receive a select set of significant service updates as early as one week after the official announcement. This option is for those who are comfortable with regular updates to the Office 365 service). Customers who have already opted into First Release will begin seeing the new boards functionality appear over the next few days. Beyond First Release, we expect Delve to roll out to all eligible Office 365 customers by early 2015.

The journey with boards starts with Delve to help you curate and organize content as you collaborate and discover. Over time, boards will be integrated across other Office 365 experiences with support for new content types and will also benefit from existing SharePoint metadata management capabilities.

- inputs from Office Blogs

New Windows 10 Devices

​Windows 10 supports the broadest device family ever – from PCs, tablets and 2-in-1s to phones to Xbox and the Internet of Things.

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And on 21st Jan 2015, Microsoft brought in two new devices to the Windows 10 family: Microsoft Surface Hub and Microsoft HoloLens.

Holographic Future with Microsoft HoloLens

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It was a special moment when Microsoft shared that Windows 10 is the world's first holographic computing platform – complete with a set of APIs that enable developers to create holographic experiences in the real world. With Windows 10, holograms are Windows universal apps and Windows universal apps can work as holograms, making it possible to place three-dimensional holograms in the world around users to communicate, create and explore in a manner that is far more personal and human.

Microsoft HoloLens is the world's first untethered holographic computer – no wires, phones or connection to a PC needed. Microsoft HoloLens allows users to view holograms in high definition and hear them in surround sound, even if they are behind the users. And with advanced sensors, Microsoft HoloLens can see what users are looking at and understand what users are communicating with their hands and voice.  By putting the user at the center of the Windows 10 computing experience, Microsoft HoloLens allows the user to create, access information, enjoy entertainment, and communicate in new and exciting ways.

Microsoft Surface Hub Unlocks the Power of Group Computing

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From no screen to 84", with Microsoft Surface Hub Microsoft introduced a new large screen device designed for the way teams in the workplace naturally interact and come together.  Custom versions of Skype for Business and OneNote are integrated into the Windows 10 shell to take full advantage of the built in cameras, sensors and mics, as well as the new screen that was built from the ground up for ink and touch. The Surface Hub features state of the art digital white boarding, instant remote conferencing, the ability for multiple people to share and edit content on the screen from any device, and a trusted platform for large-screen apps. Available in two sizes – 55" and 84" – the Surface Hub removes the current limitations of traditional conference room scenarios to empower teams to create their best work together.

New Windows 10 Experiences

Microsoft is on its way to making Windows 10 the largest-ever open collaborative development effort Microsoft has ever shipped. Since they launched the Windows Insider Program in September, Microsoft has been joined by 1.7 million Windows Insiders, who have delivered over 800,000 pieces of feedback.

On 21st Jan 2015, Microsoft shared new details on the experience coming to Windows 10, including:

Cortana, Microsoft's personal digital assistant, comes to PC and tablet, for the first time with Windows 10.

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Cortana learns your preferences to provide relevant recommendations, fast access to information, and important reminders. Interaction is natural and easy via talking or typing, with advanced features to control Cortana for more trustworthiness and transparency.

Windows 10 for phones and tablets – Windows 10 for phones and small tablets features a fast, fluid and familiar experience that seamlessly interacts with your PC.

A new web experience for Windows 10 – Code-named "Project Spartan," the next generation browser was built with greater interoperability, reliability and discoverability, with a new look and feel built just for Windows 10.

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Advanced features include the ability to annotate by keyboard or pen directly on the webpage and easily share with friends, a reading view that is distraction free, displaying the article in a simplified layout for a great reading experience for Web articles online and offline, and the integration of Cortana for finding and doing things online faster.

Office universal apps on Windows 10 offer a consistent, touch-first experience across phone, tablet and PC with new versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook. Designed from the ground up to run on Windows, users can easily create and edit Word documents, annotate slides in real-time with new inking features or easily present PowerPoint presentations, and with new touch-first controls in Excel users can create or update spreadsheets without a keyboard or mouse.

New universal applications will ship with Windows 10, offering innovative new experience applications, consistent across the device continuum, for Photos, Videos, Music, Maps, People & Messaging, and Mail & Calendar. These built-in apps have an updated design that look and feel the same from app to app and device to device.  Content is stored and synced through OneDrive, enabling users to start something on one device and continue it on another.

Continuum Mode:  On 2in1 devices, Windows 10 will move easily between keyboard/mouse and touch/tablet as it detects the transition and conveniently switches to the new mode.

Scan business cards to OneNote, contacts to Outlook using Office Lens

Thanks to technology from Microsoft Research, when you take a picture of a business card with Office Lens for Windows Phone and save it to OneNote, it will automatically recognize the card’s contact information and format it nicely into your OneNote notebook. Using OneNote on your phone, tablet, Mac or PC, you can search for text contained in the scanned business card, initiate a call to the number recognized, find their address on a map or open the attached VCF file to save their contact details to Outlook or your phone’s contact list.

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Office Lens is available for free in the Windows Phone app store.

  • Inputs from Office Blogs

Make the best of both - Skype and Lync

Microsoft enabled Lync users to contact people on Skype using instant messaging, presence, and audio calling right from a user's contact list in 2013. Microsoft has now taken the next step by adding video calling between Lync 2013 and the latest Skype for Windows desktop client. Now Lync users can conduct everyday business and collaboration "face-to-face" with customers, partners and suppliers who use Skype. The video calling with Lync requires Skype for Windows desktop client version 7.0.x.100. This latest Skype is available for download in this below link:

http://www.skype.com/en/download-skype/skype-for-windows/downloading/

There are still some issues with some browser versions where an older client is downloaded.  If you've downloaded at the link above, and the version is not 7.0.x.100, please download using a different browser.

The video calling requires an up-to-date Lync 2013 client on either Android, iOS or Windows. It works today with the latest Skype for Windows desktop client only, and requires that the Skype user sign in with their Microsoft account.

Whether you're using Lync or Skype, it's an easy, familiar experience—you make the video call the same way you make any other call, with the same options for starting, stopping, re-sizing and maximizing video.

The best of both

Lync and Skype have always delivered phenomenal voice and video experiences to business and consumer users across a wide range of environments and network conditions. Now, Microsoft has taken the best of both to make both even better. This includes built-in security, with enterprise class encryption of both media and signaling. It includes high quality, scalable video using the industry standard H.264 SVC codec with the SILK audio codec as the default choice for Lync to Skype calls. (SILK is used for billions of minutes of audio calls every day, and provides a phenomenal balance between audio quality, bandwidth utilization and power consumption).

Provision for Lync-Skype connectivity

Based on policies administratively set in Lync Server, Lync and Skype users will be able to communicate using instant messaging, see each other's presence, and initiate audio and video calls. Lync-Skype connectivity is also a feature of Lync Online, and can be enabled for Lync Online customers from the Lync Administration Center within the Office 365 portal.

Here is a link that will help the administrators to provision connectivity:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn440173.aspx

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Add a Skype contact to Lync 2013 

  1. From Lync, click Add a Contact, Add a Contact Not in My Organization.
  2. From the list of available contact providers, select Skype.
  3. In the IM Address field, enter the Microsoft Account (MSA) of the Skype user.
  4. In the Add to contact group dropdown box, select a contact group to add the user to.
  5. In the Set privacy relationship dropdown box, select the appropriate contact setting and then click OK.
  6. The user will now appear as a contact in Lync. Select the user, right-click the user name, and click See Contact Card to view the user properties. You can now establish an audio or video call with the newly added Skype user.

Add a Lync contact to Skype 

  1. Sign in to Skype. The Skype user must be logged into their Skype client with a Microsoft Account (MSA).
  2. Select the Add Contacts icon.
  3. Enter the SIP URI of the Lync user. For example, bob@contoso.com.
  4. When Skype finds the match in the search results, look for the word Lync below the Lync user's name. This indicates Skype successfully located the Lync client's SIP URI. Click the name.
  5. In the top right corner of the window, click Add to Contacts.
  6. The new contact is now added to your contact list, but you'll see a question mark instead of their status icon until they accept your request. When your new contact accepts your request, you will be able to see when they are online, initiate IM conversations, and make audio and video calls.

Here is a link for more guidance on using this Lync – Skype connectivity feature:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn440175.aspx

What's next…

Microsoft has promised that they will extend support to the Skype clients on additional platforms, starting with Android and iOS in the coming months. They will add support for SkypeIDs and make it easier to find and add contacts from the worldwide Skype directory when the next version of Lync becomes Skype for Business in the first half of 2015. These planned improvements to Lync Skype connectivity are just one example of how Skype for Business will keep and improve on all of the capabilities of Lync.

- Inputs from Office Blogs and TechNet