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What’s new: March 2016

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March brought a new tool for migrating your Evernote notes to OneNote, PowerPoint Designer enhancements and new language support in Office for Mac and Skype Translator, plus collaboration and Power Pivot updates. For business users, Skype for Business meetings experiences and voice services are being expanded, video viewer statistics are rolling out in Office 365 Video, a new reporting portal in the admin center is rolling out, new update options are available for Office 365 ProPlus and Office 365 Connectors is here. The redesigned OneNote Class Notebook—designed and built with teachers—is available worldwide. And for devs, there’s a new site for keeping up with the latest news and resources.

Leave us a comment to let us know what your favorite new feature is. If you missed last month’s updates, see What’s new: February 2015.

Office 365 Personal, Office 365 Home and Office 365 University updates

Windows tablets and iPad Pro updates—Take a video tour of the recent updates to the Office experience for Windows 10 tablets and what’s new with Office for the iPad Pro. Watch demonstrations of time savers and touch optimizations in Excel, slide design and transition updates in PowerPoint and ink annotation in Word—and across the Office apps. Also, see the inking experiences translate to the iPad Pro and more.

Sway integration in Microsoft Photos and support for Living Images—With the integration of Sway in Microsoft Photos, it’s easier and faster than ever to use the photos and videos on your Windows device to create and share interactive stories of your adventures. With just one click, you can create a Sway from a Microsoft Photos album. You can also now add Living Images from your Windows 10 device to your Sways to breathe more life into your creations.

Collaboration in Office—chat with your co-editors in real time via Skype!—Now, when you’re working with other people on a OneDrive document in Office Online, you can communicate with your fellow editors in real time via Skype, without leaving the document. To start a chat, just click the blue Chat button next to the list of co-editors for your shared document. And if IMs aren’t enough, you can quickly turn your conversation into a group call or video chat.

Make the move from Evernote to OneNote today—OneNote is one of the most popular note-taking apps. If you’ve hesitated to switch to OneNote because all your ideas and information reside in Evernote, wait no more. Download the new OneNote Importer tool today (available for Windows now and coming soon for Mac). The Importer tool migrates your Evernote notes into OneNote, so you can have all your notes in one place, on all your devices. Find out how to download the tool and get started using it.

New feature updates for Power Pivot in Excel 2016—New and improved features are available as part of your Office 365 subscription. You can now save the data model diagram view as a high resolution image file that you can use for sharing, printing or analyzing. Enhancements to the Edit Relationship dialog help you create faster and more accurate data relationships. Several important bug fixes improve your overall modeling user experience.

Excel Online updates—The March Excel Online updates help you with some of your most common spreadsheet tasks. The addition of more number formats to display your data gives you new ways to format data. You can now connect your spreadsheet to more places using hyperlinks. And the new Filter dialog in Search dialog helps you easily find the values you want to display, giving you even more ways to explore data using PivotTables. Read what else is new.

New to Office 365 in March—move from Evernote to OneNote, PowerPoint Designer updates and more—This month’s updates include a tool for migrating your Evernote notes to OneNote, the ability to search in OneNote for handwriting in photos, enhancements to PowerPoint Designer and new language support in Office for Mac (Arabic and Hebrew) and Skype Translator (Arabic). For commercial customers, Skype for Business meetings experiences and voice services are being expanded, Office 365 Project Portfolio Dashboard will soon be available to add to Project Online and video viewer statistics have rolled out to Office 365 Video.

PowerPoint Designer—what’s new and what’s next—Three enhancements give you more creative options and greater visual impact—within seconds. With support for multiple images, you can now insert more than one image to represent your ideas. New color extraction capabilities add even more value to Designer’s automated recommendations. And facial recognition enhancement improves Designer’s cropping capabilities for images with faces. Better visual options for bulleted text, data points and lists are on the way.

Office 365 for Business and Education updates*

Announcing the new Office 365 admin center—The new Office 365 admin center—now rolling out worldwide—makes it faster, easier and more efficient to manage Office 365. It shows frequent tasks directly on the dashboard and simplifies the admin experience. The new Search bar helps you quickly find the feature you want to use. Significant improvements to Office 365 reporting are rolling out, too. Read about these and the enhancements that are on the way, like customization and contextual help.

Updates for Get & Transform in Excel 2016 and the Power Query add-in—Excel 2016 includes Get & Transform, a set of features that provides fast, easy data gathering and shaping capabilities. Updates to Get & Transform include many new or improved data transformation features, like new filters and the ability to copy and paste queries between Power BI Desktop and Excel. The updates are available to Office 365 subscribers. If you have Excel 2010 or Excel 2013, you can get these updates by downloading the latest Power Query for Excel add-in.

Introducing the Class Notebook add-in for OneNote—designed and built with teachers—The OneNote Class Notebook has been redesigned, with the teacher at the center every step of the way. Top-requested features include: easy and quick distribution of pages or new sections to students; individualization through distribution of pages to specified students or student groups; rapid sequential reviewing of student work and more. The preview of the Class Notebook add-in for OneNote is now releasing in 43 languages, across 61 worldwide markets, so teachers around the world can try it out immediately.

New update options for Office 365 ProPlus using System Center Configuration Manager—IT admins can now manage Office 365 client updates—including those for Office 365 ProPlus, Visio Pro for Office 365 and Project Pro for Office 365—directly via the System Center Configuration Manager built-in software updates workflow engine. Watch the video to see how it works. The new capability is available in the upcoming release of Configuration Manager update 1602, currently in Technical Preview.

Office 365 integration and updates to Dynamics CRM—With new capabilities that span Office 365 Groups, the Office Graph and inherited Protection Center controls, Office 365 and Dynamics CRM work even better together to help boost productivity. Watch the video that goes hands-on with the latest Dynamics CRM to highlight Office 365 integration for sellers, admins and developers, demonstrating how CRM creates Office 365 Groups to improve collaboration, how you can access CRM data in Outlook email and more.

Expanding the reach of Skype for Business meetings and voice services in Office 365—Skype for Business Cloud PBX, Meeting Broadcast and PSTN services launched three months ago, and the first major geographic expansion is already under way, with PSTN Conferencing available for purchase in 32 countries. More expansion is on the way, including new support for hybrid deployments and new meeting room solutions, as well as improvements to unified reporting, management and analytics for enterprise communications. Find out what’s coming that can help you power modern meetings.

New reporting portal in the Office 365 admin center—The new reporting portal in the Office 365 admin center is rolling out now. It provides you with valuable insights about how the Office 365 services are being used and delivers details down to the individual user level. New reports provide insights you can act on, and the cross-service portal gives you more visibility into your organization’s use of Office 365.

What’s new—Office 365 Video—Watch the video to see highlights of the innovations rolling out now, including video viewer statistics, a more centralized way to upload videos, the ability to upload your own subtitle files and choose your own thumbnail, enhanced discoverability, and an easier way to insert a video into a SharePoint page or team site. New admin controls were added, too, giving admins control over who can download videos based on channel permissions and over Yammer settings per channel.

Introducing Office 365 Connectors—Office 365 Connectors, a brand new experience that delivers relevant interactive content and updates from popular apps and services to Office 365 Groups, is here. Whether you’re tracking a Twitter feed, managing a project with Trello or watching the latest news headlines with Bing, Office 365 Connectors surfaces all the information you care about in the Office 365 Groups shared inbox, so you can easily collaborate with others and interact with the updates as they happen. Find out how Office 365 Connectors can enhance your team collaboration.

Office 365 developer updates

The latest news for devs—For the latest dev news, code samples, resources and documentation, as well as help getting started with Office 365 APIs, Office add-ins and more, follow this site.

Please note that some of the updates may take time to show up in your Office 365 account, because they’re being rolled out to customers worldwide.

—Andy O’Donald @andyodonald

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*Not all updates apply to every Office 365 plan; please check the individual post for specifics.

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