A robust interface for SharePoint Online (O365 for now, support for on-prem coming soon) is now available for every major mobile platform. Microsoft is really excited about this release as it is more than the past/familiar "obligatory" mobile view experience of SharePoint. Through the Microsoft Graph, richer information about the content, its publishers, and subscribers is carefully presented as a first-class mobile experience.
So let's start with the obvious business questions that are burning a hole in your brain right now.
1. Does this only work with O365 or for my on-prem SharePoint as well?
- Currently Microsoft has only rolled this out for O365 tenants. This is in keeping with their promise to innovate on the cloud at a much more rapid pace than for on-prem environments. However, Microsoft does intend to support SharePoint on-prem for mobile apps soon.
- Even if have an on-prem version of SharePoint, Microsoft makes the barrier to entry for O365 very low (as little as $5 /month/user). So if you're the driver of innovation in your business group / firm, I definitely recommend activating an O365 account for test purposes - just so that you can demo the new experiences (like Mobile Apps) before they become available for on-prem. Why wait?
2. How do I access / install the SharePoint Mobile Apps for increased productivity when I'm on the go?
- Depending on your device vendor (Windows 10/Android/Apple), head to the respective app store and type in the search term "sharepoint mobile app"
- You should see search results like the following results below (I'm showing Google Play Store search results from my Android device). Choose "Microsoft SharePoint" - first result, and on the next screen select "Install". Mission Accomplished.
3. Are there any killer features that make my life easier on the new Mobile apps?
That depends on your answers to the following questions:
- Do you ever feel out of the loop when you're on the go (without your laptop)?
- Yes - SharePoint Mobile Apps is for you. Enjoy all of your content in a well-organized, searchable, user-friendly experience
- No - Enjoy your alone time. See you on Monday.
- Do you loath that traditional browser-based "Mobile view" of SharePoint?
- Yes - SharePoint Mobile Apps is for you. Microsoft has clearly invested time in crafting the user experience so that it renders using the native advantages of each mobile platform. Besides that SharePoint is now a first-class citizen in your family of apps (no more keeping up with web bookmarks and re-entering user credentials). In addition to providing a clean way to navigate your sites, there is also a tab dedicated to People/Contacts in your network. Finally, the mobile Search experience harkens to its full-site counterpart with search results grouped according to classification & relevance (sites, files, people, etc.)
- No - SharePoint Mobile Apps is still for you. In this case there is such a thing as improving on perfection!
- Would you like a little more context/insight into the content you're accessing on the go?
- The SharePoint Mobile App is infused with the intelligence of the Microsoft Graph - applied machine learning of activity in O365 - to connect you to the relevant information and people around you, throughout O365. You'll see the full effect of this feature on the "News" and "Sites" and "People" tabs of the app. If you've ever felt left out of the "conversation" involving content your team is working on, Microsoft does a great job of aggregating content on this tab based on responses to your own activity as well as others in your team. You'll know immediately which documents/articles are receiving the most "buzz" and/or demanding your priority attention.
When you tap on a site in the Sites tab, you’ll see the 4 most recent news posts from individual sites above the recent site activity. Tap See all to view all the news posts published in this site.
1. In the News box, click + Add to start creating your post.
2. Begin with adding a headline, and then click a button to add text, graphics and documents on your page.
3. When you have multiple items in a post, you can rearrange them before publishing. Tap, hold and drag an item to move it up or down on the page.
4. When you are done creating your page, click Publish at the top right, and you'll see the story appear in the News section as the most recent story.
4. Is there document editing and offline support similar to what I get with One-Drive, but for my mobile device?
- Short Answer Here: Yes
- What you'll need (Prerequisites):
- Install the following additional Apps:
- OneDrive for Microsoft App
- MSFT Excel, PPT, Word Apps (respectively)
- When opening a file from within the SharePoint app you will be prompted to open the document with your native mobile Office App (Excel, PPT, Word, etc.) depending on the document format. Upon saving your edits you will be able to select your local device or OneDrive destination.
SharePoint Online Team News: