June 13, 2010

Microsoft Office on SkyDrive

From Windows Team Blog:

Over the last few months, we've gotten incredible feedback from the hundreds of thousands of users in our Office Web Apps Technical Preview.  We’ve been busy incorporating much of that feedback, and today, Office Web Apps on SkyDrive are now available to everyone in the US, UK, Canada, and Ireland. We’ll have more to share next week when Office 2010 is released to consumers, including how Office 2010 + SkyDrive + Office Web Apps give you the best productivity experience across the PC, phone, and browser.

In the meantime, if you live in the US, UK, Canada, or Ireland, you can head over to Office.live.com today to start viewing and editing Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote documents right in your web browser – and share them with your friends.

If you don’t live in one of those regions, you can still get access – just click here. You might not get the Web Apps in your favorite language yet, as we are still rolling out updates to different regions. Note that people you share documents with may also need to visit the link above before they can access the documents you share with them.

A few weeks ago, I blogged about what our team has been working on, and since then, we’ve been busy adding a little more polish, so we could present them to you today.

Let’s get started

There are so many new things for you to explore that trying to cover them all in a single blog post would be like trying to gift wrap the Space Needle. Still, there are quite a few great features for you to try out right away.

  • Upload your docs. Go to Office.live.com and upload a doc (or lots of docs). If you have Silverlight (install it here), you’ll get an extra bonus: the ability to upload many more files at once, simply by dragging and dropping them all in your favorite browser. Don’t have a doc to upload? No problem, you can create Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote docs right in the browser.
    Picture of Dragging files from your desktop directly into the 
                Drag files from your desktop directly into the browser

  • Edit a doc right in your browser. On Office.live.com, you’ll notice that all the files you’ve recently viewed or edited—or your friends have shared with you—show up right in the “Recent documents” section so they’re easy to find.
    Picture of the Office page on SkyDrive
                   The Office page on SkyDrive
    Click Edit in browser, and start working away in the Web Apps without having to install any special software. If you need a feature (like 3D charts, for example) from Office on your PC, it’s really easy to open your document on your PC with little interruption.
    Picture of editing a Word doc in my browser
                 Editing a Word doc in my browser
  • Work together in real time. Sometimes two brains (or ten brains) are better than one. Like when you’re updating a party invitation list in Excel, or planning a group trip using OneNote. With co-authoring in Excel and OneNote Web Apps, you can work with your friends at the same time and never be locked out of a document when someone else is working on it.
  • Read your docs on your smartphone. Browse to Office.live.com  on your phone and you’ll be able to view Word and PowerPoint documents without any extra software (on most smartphones).
    Picture of a PowerPoint slide viewed on a mobile phone
              Viewing a PowerPoint slide on my mobile phone
  • And lots more. Across the board, we’ve worked to give you a smoother experience sharing and collaborating with others, with features such as sending and receiving instant messages using Messenger on the web, whether or not you have Messenger installed on your computer. To make sure you can share without worries, we’ve built in features like version history, which allows you to go back to older edits of your documents, and enhanced search, which lets you search across all your documents and those shared with you by others. Plus, when you’re done sharing, you can print your Word and PowerPoint documents right from the browser.
    Chatting in Messenger on the web while editing an Excel workbook 
using Office Web Apps
    Chatting in Messenger on the web while editing an Excel workbook using Office Web Apps

There's more – but you probably want to just try it yourself. Get going!

There’s more to come

You might be asking, when do I get access to all the cool Office features in Hotmail that were announced recently? We’ll have more to share on the new Hotmail updates very soon.

And of course, you get even more cool features  when you combine Office Web Apps with Office 2010, for example, enabling you to edit offline,  and to co-author documents using revision marks, comments, and other rich features in Word and PowerPoint. You can learn more about Office 2010 here.

That’s it for now!

Jason Moore
Principal Lead Program Manager, Windows Live SkyDrive

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