Microsoft announced some updates to Word, PowerPoint and your inbox on desktop today.
With respect to Word, there’s a new feature called Editor which will help users have a better experience by suggesting changes. “Editor (which is a cloud service) assists you with the finishing touches by providing an advanced proofing and editing service. Leveraging machine learning and natural language processing—mixed with input from our own team of linguists—Editor makes suggestions to help you improve your writing.” This feature gets interesting when used especially in the other feature that was introduced to Word by Microsoft. Researcher is a tool that leverages on Microsoft’s search engine, Bing to bring in more a more streamlined content from the web for your work. This is just like what Google did Google docs which allows you to search on Google from docs directly. For Word 2016 users, this comes to them immediately and later for everyone else including Office 365 users.
And then there’s Zoom for PowerPoint which is a new feature that allows current users of PowerPoint 2016 to navigate slides easily right to the first slide. As seen in the video, this tool could come in handy in presentations or question and answer sessions where you would before now usually have to scroll to the slide you are referring to. With Zoom, these slides are placed side by side and can easily be clicked on for easy referencing. Again this would become available to other users but as of today, it’s for 2016 users only.
Lastly, there’s Outlook with focused Inbox and @ mentions which brings a feature that was already available on iOS and Android which is that it filters your inbox to show you more important mail first. According to the announcement, Microsoft said they are rolling it out to Outlook on Windows, Mac and Outlook on the web. Focused Inbox helps you focus on the emails that matter most to you, as it automatically separates your inbox into two tabs. Emails that matter most to you are in the “Focused” tab, while the rest remain easily accessible—but out of the way in the “Other” tab and this process is not static. The process gets better with time because the system is capable of giving you a better inbox based on your behaviour.
This announcement as Microsoft gets ready to celebrate one year of its Windows 10 next week on August 2nd and by the time these features get launched on Office 365, this would just be the latest of updates to the Cloud service which has seen Bookings and Stream feature additions this month alone.