Smile! Camera backup has arrived on the new SkyDrive app for iOS

Millions of people worldwide use SkyDrive on their mobile devices to capture, store, and share photos and important files. While we’re proud of the SkyDrive experience on Windows, we also want to deliver great SkyDrive experiences across all the devices you use.

Almost 2 years ago we shipped the first version of the SkyDrive app for iOS, and since then, we’ve released several app updates, each one bringing new features and performance improvements. Today I’m excited to talk about some significant updates to the SkyDrive app for iOS, which is available today.


One of the most popular features on Windows Phone is the ability to automatically upload the photos and videos you capture to SkyDrive. With the new SkyDrive app for iOS, we’re bringing that same capability to those of you who use iPhones and iPads. The update also includes improved editing and viewing in Office Mobile, and OneNote integration. Finally, we’re also really excited to share some updates to our Facebook integration on, an experience that no other cloud provider offers.





With our new camera backup feature, it’s now easier than ever to get all the photos and videos you capture on your iPhone over to your Windows PC or tablet.  You’re in the driver’s seat: You can control if uploads happen over Wi-Fi or your data network, whether photos are uploaded at original resolution or down-sampled to save space on your SkyDrive, and whether videos are included.


With this feature, you’re now able to free up space by deleting photos and videos on your local camera roll after they’ve been uploaded to SkyDrive. In time, you might find that you’re actually using the SkyDrive app as your camera roll, given that it will have all of your photos, regardless of the device you captured them on. This is one of the most popular feature requests we’ve heard from our customers, and we’re very excited to make it available today.


We’re also excited to announce an improved viewing and editing experience for customers who use Office Mobile for iPhone and OneNote for iOS. With this update, when you’re using Office Mobile to select a recent doc from SkyDrive, you can open it directly in Office Mobile or OneNote, instead of the Quicklook viewer that we offer today. After you make edits, you can save your changes back to SkyDrive. This means you get a more seamless editing experience, no matter where you choose to open the file. Again, this has been something people have been asking for, and we’re happy to deliver.





You’ll also notice an entirely new look and feel to the app for iOS 7, including larger thumbnails, so all those photos you’re uploading look even better! Install or update the SkyDrive app now via iTunes.


As an added bonus, we’re also announcing today that sharing photos is getting even better on! We received feedback that you want to be able to see from within SkyDrive exactly how the photos and albums you’re sharing will appear on Facebook, so we came up with a simplified, intuitive experience.


When sharing one or multiple photos, you now have the option to share to an existing Facebook album, or to put them in a new album. If the latter, you can name and set the permissions for the folder all from within SkyDrive before sharing to Facebook. This means you can now have photos on your iOS device uploaded automatically to SkyDrive, and then share those photos to Facebook via in just a few easy steps.






As always, it is our goal to make SkyDrive the best way to help keep your photos and files safer in the cloud, and ensure you always have them with you. We hope you enjoy these updates and we look forward to hearing what you think.

How to Use Yaminars to Increase Employee Engagement on Yammer

YaminarsYaminars are short, five-minute or less informational videos that educate users about Yammer. The Yammer Education Services (YES) team creates the “small chunk” videos around a specific feature or topic so a user may easily and quickly find an answer to their Yammer question. Yaminars cover everything from simple product features to recent product changes, and even interesting or new ways to use the tool. For a full list of Yaminars, visit the Learning Center of the Yammer Success site.

Start a Yammer 101 Group
Thousands of Yammer customers benefit from using Yaminars as part of their Social Journey. For example, customers often create a Yammer 101 Group and supply it with Yaminars. They also create a Note within that Group for quick and easy access to a self-help guide about Yammer. Simply use the hyperlinking feature in Yammer to link to the Yaminars on the Success site. Another helpful tip to get started is creating learning paths for users by ordering the videos the way you would like and giving them short descriptions within the Note. The learner may then go through the links to the Yaminars and watch the ones that are most interesting or helpful.

Link to Yaminars
Linking to the videos on the Yammer Success site is the easiest way to go about this as the videos will be auto updated for you, the downfall however, is that your users will be taken to another site to view them rather than having them display inline within Yammer. If you would like to display them inline and you are part of the Yammer Customer Network (YCN) you can download the videos from the network and upload them to your own network. You can then create the same Note and use the paperclip icon when editing the Note to add in the links to the videos on your own Yammer network. If you choose to do it this way, be careful as our product changes quite frequently, and thus the videos do as well.

Yaminar Tip: follow the “Yaminars” Note in the YCN you will receive a bell notification anytime the videos are updated.

Create a “Getting Started” Note
A great example of a Yaminars Note to create in your network is a “Getting Started” Note. This Note could cover all the Yammer basics, starting with the Yammer Profile Settings video that covers how to set up your Yammer account. You can move down the list and link to the videos in the “Getting Started” section of the Yaminars page to easily build out the next videos to watch. This Note can then be attached to any new Yammer members “joined” message, quickly showing them where they can learn about Yammer.

Check the service health of your Office 365 service on the go

As we discussed in a recent
blog post,  Cloud services you can trust, “Transparency requires consistent communication.”
working to improve the transparency of the Office 365 service by continuously
improving our communication with customers on changes that impact the Office
365 environment. Recently we deployed the improved Message Center, which delivers messages targeted to your
organization. Now we’re introducing another communication tool, one that was recently
demoed on the November 6 episode of The Garage Series–
a new app for on-the-go service health checks.

Starting today, Office 365 service administrators can connect to their
organization’s Office 365 service status from wherever they are with the Office
365 Admin app. The new app enables administrators to view service health
information and maintenance status updates from their mobile device. They can also
filter information by service subscriptions and configure app data refresh

Administrators can use the Office 365
Admin app to check the overall health of their organization’s services, see the
health of individual services, and set data refresh intervals.

To access service health data with the
Office 365 Admin app, you must have an active Office 365 subscription with
administrator user rights. Also, this app does not currently support Windows
Azure Active Directory Multi-Factor Authentication.

The Office 365 Admin app is in the process
of rolling out across multiple platforms, starting with Windows Phone 8 today
and followed by Android (4.2.1 and up) and iOS 7 in the coming weeks. Stay
tuned to this blog
and your Message Center. You’ll be notified as soon as the app is available on
Google Play and in the Apple App Store.

Students, compete with your Apps for Office

Ever wished email could do more for you or a calendar appointment could be more dynamic?  When you’re writing documents or building spreadsheets, is there something that could help you to present data in a different way or check your document for correct references ?  When you create a presentation for a class, is there something missing that would have really made it shine?

You have the power to make that all come true. Build a web app in common languages such as HTML, JavaScript, PHP, or .NET and you can publish it to the Apps for Office Store where it can be purchased by hundreds of millions of users.

Apps for Office is a platform for developers to create cloud-hosted web apps that work inside Microsoft Word, Outlook, Excel, and PowerPoint. These apps work seamlessly within the desktop versions of Office and within the Office Web Apps, adding new features, tools, and content to the software used by millions worldwide.

Imagine Cup is for students who are at least 16 years of age, please ensure your eligibility with the rules here.

Work directly with the Microsoft Office team

The Apps for Office Challenge is how you get started. Teams of up to four students worldwide are invited to submit short written proposals for their idea by January 9. The Microsoft Office team will pick the best proposals and then work directly with those teams as they develop their web apps. You’ll have access to specialists right in the heart of Microsoft who will review your work and point you in the right direction. Imagine your next job interview when you tell them how you partnered with Microsoft!

From those shortlisted teams, two World Finalist teams will win a trip to Seattle in July, 2014, to compete in the Imagine Cup World Finals. These teams will meet the Microsoft Office experts they’ve been working with and compete on stage for first and second-place prizes of $5,000 and $3,000; and of course, you’ll get your app published in the Apps for Office Store.

How to get started

Ready to change your life? Ready to take a shot at teaming up with Microsoft Office to build amazing web apps? Then it’s time to get started:

  1. Visit Microsoft DreamSpark to get Visual Studio Professional 2013 at no cost.
  2. Browse the Apps for Office Store to see what other developers are already doing with the platform and look at some sample apps.
  3. Visit the Office Dev Center and learn the basics of how Apps for Office work.
  4. Check out the Apps for Office Overview to get up to speed fast.
  5. Dream up your idea for a great web app and use our Apps for Office Proposal Template to write up your concept.

How to compete

  1. Write and submit your proposal document by January 23, 2014, 23:59 GMT. You don’t have to start coding yet.
  2. By February 13, 2014, up to twenty semifinalist teams will advance to our second round where you’ll develop your App for Office with consultations from the Microsoft Office team.
  3. Finish your App for Office and submit it by April 30, 2014, 23:59 GMT.

OneNote for Android update: Do more in less time

Add anything from anywhere

In today’s busy world, we use phones to discover a lot of information to capture and reference later, such as an article on a favorite sports star, a recipe for an amazing dessert, a poster of an interesting-looking bartending class, or an important file shared by a colleague. OneNote is great for storing all your information, and now with the Add to OneNote feature, you can add what’s most important to you from any application on your Android device.

Just look for a Share button in your favorite browser, news aggregator or recipe application. Then select Add to OneNote, and OneNote will store the item for you and also make it available to you on all your devices.

Or, if you want to capture exactly what you see on the screen, you can send a screenshot to OneNote. Just take a screenshot, tap the Share option, and then select Add to OneNote.

Add to OneNote works for a variety of content types–articles, webpages, images, videos, and files.

If you use a device that supports multi-window mode, such as Samsung Galaxy S3, now you can launch OneNote in the multi-window mode and quickly capture all the relevant information for your research project to OneNote.

Notes at your fingertips

Don’t you hate it when you make others in line behind you wait while you look for the printout of your flight itinerary? Do you find yourself looking for your grocery list when you’re already at the store? We have a solution for you: Add the OneNote Recent Widget on your Home screen and have quick access to your most recently accessed notes.

Or, add the page, section or notebook of your choice to the Home screen and have all of them just a tap away.

And more…of course

The Garage Series: Office 365 in education–putting IT, teacher and student advantages to the test

Just before the holiday break, we had a two-part special for setting up Office 365 in a small business environment and getting application experiences across a huge range of devices. We came up with the idea for shows to answer some of the most common questions that we get among small business users from initial set-up to provisioning users and devices for your organization as well as which small business package to choose. Similarly this week we thought we would start the new year by reviewing Office 365 in the classroom in a show dedicated to education. We take a look to the classroom and how the free Office 365 Education services can provide new experiences available to for students, faculty and IT staff.

One pattern I started to see as we were planning out this show was that many of the demands users have in a managed IT environment (think corporate IT) are similar in a university or education setting. People want to be able to use their device of choice and IT departments want sufficient controls and automation capabilities to make their lives easier. The one thing you can’t rely on in an education setting are equivalent device management capabilities. Even though many businesses are going to a bring your own device or BYOD strategy, education is largely born BYOD. So things like Active Directory domain join or mobile device management policies don’t usually apply to the largest portion of a university IT department’s customers – the students. While some universities are opting for expensive virtual desktop infrastructure solutions, most don’t see the value or want to provide native or browser-based experiences in favor of better student experience.

The nice thing about the Office 365 stack is that it can work well in BYOD environments spanning multiple platforms. Even the recently announced Student Advantage offer for Office 365 Education –  where you get Office 365 ProPlus for students at no additional cost when an institutions purchases Office for faculty and staff – students can be empowered to install their own apps across all of their devices using a common Office 365 account and without the need to use systems management tools or distribute media. In this show, we focused on all of the free experiences in Office 365 Education A2 – ranging from email and document collaboration in SharePoint, to Office Web Apps, OWA for iPad, calendaring, online meetings and more across the platforms students demand.

Real-time co-authoring between Marissa’s PC and Yahya’s iPad

I also take a minute to highlight some of the possible integration scenarios – like using enrollment system data to automatically provision user accounts, course-related SharePoint sites, class schedules in device calendars and email confirmations of course enrollment using tools like PowerShell scripting and the extensibility Office 365 has to integrate with in-house systems.

Of course it wouldn’t be a Garage Series show without lots of demos, architectural sketches and third party expert insights. You’ll have to watch the show to see all of that. Next time, we kick-off another multi-part series and we’ll bring back Office Ninja, Tal Kryzpow, to show off some advanced client features while I try to answer our users’ frequently-asked questions. Keep checking back Wednesdays to see the latest Office 365 Garage Series shows.

Thanks for watching and best wishes for 2014!

–Jeremy Chapman

More resources

Office 365 Education site

Announcing Student Advantage (blog)

Office 365 Education Plans

Garage Series Video Channel

Garage Series Season 1 Blog Archive

Follow @OfficeGarage on Twitter

About the Garage Series hosts

By day, Jeremy Chapman works at Microsoft, responsible for optimizing the future of Office client and service delivery as the senior deployment lead. Jeremy’s background in application compatibility, building deployment automation tools and infrastructure reference architectures has been fundamental to the prioritization of new Office enterprise features such as the latest Click-to-Run install. By night, he is a car modding fanatic and serial linguist. Jim Lucey is a Senior Operations PM on the Office 365 team with a long history in Office 365 looking after migrations and the education experience. When he isn’t running after his two boys at home or during Garage Series filming, he runs competitively in marathons across the United States.

Belgian bank insurance company KBC invests in Office 365 for collaboration

As the financial industry continues to recover from a global recession and identify ways to increase efficiency, cloud technology is a growing trend in this sector. Office 365 is helping many of these companies facilitate this transition to the cloud, and we have one such customer to announce today.

After carefully examining various solutions available on the market, KBC, a bank-insurer company in Belgium with 37,000 employees, has chosen Office 365 in order to enhance responsiveness and improve collaboration across the organization. Staff at KBC’s headquarters already use Microsoft Lync for instant messaging and conferencing, and are now expanding their use of Office 365.

Strategy and approach to the SharePoint trademark

Recently there have been concerns about the proper use, and associated use rights, of the ‘SharePoint’ name in websites, social media properties, blogs, etc – outside of how Microsoft and the SharePoint team use the brand name. Microsoft has established trademark guidelines and policies that refer to proper use of Microsoft trademarks in different scenarios. Though we want to be clear the SharePoint team is not actively taking special, targeted efforts to enforce them. From time to time, our Legal and Corporate Affairs (LCA) department makes routine sweeps to ensure compliance with our published trademark regulations. In situations where there are compliance concerns, both the SharePoint Team and LCA are eager to work with you and/or other asset owners to arrive at a positive resolution. We strive to support our communities and stakeholders, and firmly believe technology evangelists and community members contribute to the value of the SharePoint product, the SharePoint brand and the overall success of Microsoft.

OneNote for iPad updates

OneNote also is available on Windows 8, Windows RT, Windows Phone, and Android. If you’ve been using OneNote on your other devices and want to learn how to get it up and running on your iPad, join us and we’ll show you how to get started, plus share some cool tips especially for working with OneNote for iPad.

What you will learn at Tuesday’s webinar

  • How to get your OneNote notebooks on the iPad
  • How to create notebooks in OneNote for iPad
  • How to add, rename, delete sections
  • Automatic list detection

Introducing the new Office 365 Partner admin center

The new Office 365 Partner admin center provides Partners new and enhanced tools to manage their Office 365 customers.  The new Office 365 Partner admin center is rolling out to partners worldwide over the next few weeks.  Previously, with Partner tools in the Office 365 admin center, you could perform delegated administration tasks on behalf of customers and create trial invitations, purchase offers, and offers for delegated administration. With the tools in the new Partner admin center, you are now also able to:

  • View the customers for which you have delegated admin privileges—all in one place.
  • Easily find, select, and perform administrative tasks on behalf of your customers.
  • View your customers’ Office 365 service health status and details.
  • Create, edit, and view service requests on behalf of your customers.

View all your customers in one place

To see a list of all the customers for which you have delegated admin privileges, log in to your Office 365 admin portal, and select Partner from the top header. In the Office 365 Partner admin center, select client management from the left navigation area. The customer list that appears is the starting point for viewing important information about customers and performing admin tasks on behalf of customers. To view summary information about a particular customer, including their contact information and subscription details, or to get to quick links to perform admin tasks on behalf of a customer, just select their name from the list.


In the Office 365 Partner admin center, you can view your customer list and select a customer to view summary information, including customer contact information and subscription details.

You can also search for a customer by name using the search box above your customer list. When you start typing a customer name, a drop-down list of the closest matches appears under the search box, making it fast and easy to find the customer you’re looking for. This is especially useful when you’re managing many customers.

The list makes it easy to review the service health of all your customers, too. A glance at the Service health column lets you know quickly if any customers have been impacted by a service incident. To get details about the service incident affecting that customer, click the information icon that appears next to their name.

Perform admin tasks on behalf of a customer

In the client management section of the Partner admin center, you can also select a customer to start performing admin tasks on behalf of that customer. You can go directly to the customer’s Office 365 admin center, Exchange Online admin center, SharePoint Online admin center, or Lync Online admin center by using Quick Links. As a Partner with delegated admin permissions, you can perform administrative tasks for these services just as if you were an admin within the customer’s organization.


Performing admin tasks on a customer’s behalf is simple: select the customer and then a Quick Link.

View your customers’ service health

You can also view a customer’s service health dashboard after you’ve selected that customer from your client management list—just by clicking service health in the left navigation. This gives you better visibility into events or issues that may be impacting a customer’s environment, including existing incidents and upcoming planned maintenance events. You can also use the search box to find a particular customer’s service health dashboard fast.


View a customer’s service health dashboard to see if there are any incidents that may be impacting that customer.

Create, edit, and view your customers’ service requests

You can also easily manage service requests on behalf of your customers. Once you’ve selected a customer from your list,   click service requests in the left navigation. This displays a list of all Office 365 service requests associated with that customer that have been opened with Microsoft support, including the current status of the request, date opened, and date last modified. To view the details of a particular service request, add notes to it, or even close it if the issue has been resolved, just select that service request.

To find a specific service request fast, type the reference number in the search box at the top of the service requests page, or search for an individual customer to view all the service requests associated with that customer. This can save you a lot of time, whether you’re managing just a few customers or many.


You can view or edit existing service requests on behalf of a customer in the Service requests section.

In addition to viewing and modifying service requests on behalf of a customer, Partners can create a new service request on behalf of a customer. It’s as simple as clicking the plus sign (+) at the top of the service requests page. Creating a new service request enters the issue into the Microsoft support system. After creating a new service request, you can go back at any time and view the status of the request, edit the details, or close the request if it has been resolved by the customer or the Partner.


You can also create a new service request on behalf of a customer in the Office 365 Partners admin center.

Create trial invitations, purchase offers, and delegated admin requests

In the Build your business section of the Office 365 Partner center, you can perform the same tasks that were previously available to Partners, including creating trial invitations, purchase offers, and delegated admin requests. When creating purchase offers and trial invitations, you can also select an option to offer delegated administration to your customer at the same time. When you send trial invitations or purchase offers to customers, you are automatically associated as the Partner-of-record for these subscriptions, which may make you eligible to earn an Advisor incentive on the paid subscription.


In the Build your business section, you can create trial invitations, purchase offers, or delegated admin offers to send to your customers.