“Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.”
We’re pleased to announce general availability of SharePoint Server 2016, which provides SharePoint customers a foundation for modern, intelligent intranets and content collaboration. SharePoint Server 2016 delivers foundational improvements that enhance the quality of your on-premises SharePoint solutions and enable you to take advantage of innovations we introduce to Office 365 and SharePoint Server moving forward.
Customers who would like to evaluate the capabilities of SharePoint Server 2016 can download trial versions at the SharePoint Server 2016 website.
In addition to general availability of SharePoint Server 2016, today we announced a new vision for SharePoint and significant new innovations across SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business. You can learn more about those announcements by reading “The Future of SharePoint” blog post.
SharePoint Server 2016 value
SharePoint Server 2016 delivers significant value in three areas:
- Cloud-inspired infrastructure. SharePoint Server 2016 represents a new generation of SharePoint that accrues our experience running SharePoint at scale in Office 365 and brings our investments in SharePoint Online to your datacenter to improve performance, reliability, manageability and scale.
SharePoint Server 2016 is derived from the same code used to deliver SharePoint Online—code that has been validated over years, by millions of users, making it the most comprehensively tested version of SharePoint to date. This unified code base also facilitates support and updates across both Office 365 and on-premises SharePoint Server, and enables a standardized set of APIs that span on-premises and the cloud, enabling customers and partners to innovate more easily than ever.
- Compliance and reporting. Data Loss Prevention (DLP) is non-negotiable, and overexposure to information can have legal and compliance implications. SharePoint Server 2016 provides a broad array of features and capabilities designed to make certain that sensitive information remains protected with investments in DLP, new scenarios to enable data encryption and compliance tools that span on-premises servers and Office 365 while providing a balance between enabling user self-service and ensuring content usage adheres to corporate policy.
- Enhanced user experiences. SharePoint Server 2016 brings innovations in user experience from Office 365 to your on-premises farm, with improvements to document libraries and navigation constructs that are consistent with Office 365. These updates have proven successful in driving adoption in Office 365 and will now benefit SharePoint Server. And for hybrid customers, there will be a seamless user experience that spans from the datacenter to the cloud. We’ve also improved mobile access and the touch-based experience in team sites.
By investing in cloud-inspired infrastructure and compliance and reporting, SharePoint Server 2016 is the highest quality, scalable and reliable release of SharePoint.
You can learn more about SharePoint Server 2016 in this video:
SharePoint Server 2016—foundation for the future
We’re determined to bring as much value as possible from SharePoint Online to SharePoint Server in your datacenter. Moving to a unified code-base makes that possible, and SharePoint Server will accelerate our ability to deliver high-value innovation to you in three ways.
- Seamless connection to innovative Office 365 features and experiences. SharePoint Server 2016 allows users to transition smoothly between on-premises sites and Office 365 sites and experiences. For example, users can launch Delve from the on-premises App Launcher to access the new People experiences in Office 365. From there, users can take advantage of intuitive and responsive authoring capabilities in the new Blog experience. These experiences are in Office 365, but the transition from on-premises is seamless. Administrators can also configure easy connections to OneDrive for Business and Yammer.
- Integrated, unified, hybrid experiences. SharePoint Server also delivers cloud-born innovation through hybrid capabilities and experiences that span, integrate and unify on-premises farms and Office 365.
The new SharePoint home page gives users a navigation portal to sites in Office 365 and on-premises farms. Links on the SharePoint home page include links managed by the organization, sites explicitly followed by the user, and sites that are recommended based on the intelligence of Office Graph. The beautiful new SharePoint home page displays sites in a card-based UI, and each site’s card provides an activity stream powered by Office Graph.
For IT professionals, we have delivered hybrid search, which unifies the index, query results and search experience across Office 365 and on-premises farms running SharePoint 2016, SharePoint 2013 and even SharePoint 2010. Hybrid search enables on-premises content to surface within Office Graph-powered applications such as Delve. IT professionals can also leverage hybrid configurations to unify compliance policies, eDiscovery and auditing.
We are excited to announce that the SharePoint mobile app will support both on-premises and Office 365 sites for hybrid customers.
Each of these integrated, unified and hybrid experiences and services enable you to take advantage of innovation and capabilities in Office 365 while maintaining workloads on-premises that are not suited to Office 365. You can migrate workloads to Office 365 at your own pace, based on your own requirements, and still take advantage of Office 365 where it best meets your needs.
To learn more and about how you can quickly get value from the cloud with hybrid options and tips for what makes the most sense for your organization, watch this video:
- On-premises experiences and features. We remain committed to our on-premises customers and recognize the need to modernize experiences, patterns and practices in SharePoint Server. While our innovation will be delivered to Office 365 first, we will provide many of the new experiences and frameworks to SharePoint Server 2016 customers with Software Assurance through Feature Packs. This means you won’t have to wait for the next version of SharePoint Server to take advantage of our cloud-born innovation in your datacenter.
The first Feature Pack will be delivered through our public update channel starting in calendar year 2017, and customers will have control over which features are enabled in their on-premises farms. We will provide more detail about our plans for Feature Packs in coming months.
In addition, we will deliver a set of capabilities for SharePoint Server 2016 that address the unique needs of on-premises customers.
SharePoint Server—powering your journey to the mobile-first, cloud-first world
We know that customers worldwide use SharePoint to support collaboration, search, business process automation and custom business applications; and we know that many customers rely on SharePoint Server for mission-critical workloads. We know it’s not always easy to move your business and workloads to the cloud.
So we have invested in SharePoint Server 2016 to deliver quality, manageability and scalability that we’re proud of, and that you can count on. SharePoint Server 2016 is a foundation for the future and next step in the journey, giving you rapid access to innovative new experiences in Office 365, enabling you to unify and integrate Office 365 with your datacenter through hybrid features, and bringing many of our most important innovations to you directly in SharePoint Server on-premises.
Today also marks availability of Office Online Server, which, when paired with SharePoint Server 2016, allows organizations to deliver browser-based versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote; document previews in lists and libraries; and powerful capabilities to include Durable Links and Excel Online. To learn more, see Office Online Server now available.
The future of SharePoint is you
As we make decisions about where to invest to deliver simple and secure content management and collaboration for your teams and your organization, we look forward to hearing from you. Please share your thoughts and ideas through the Office 365 Network and SharePoint’s UserVoice.
The future of SharePoint Server is bright, and we are excited to share our vision, to collaborate with you on our next steps and to empower you, your teams and your organization to do more. To learn more about our vision for SharePoint and the significant new innovations across SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business that were announced today, read “The Future of SharePoint” blog post.
Calls to action
- Evaluate SharePoint Server 2016.
- Join the Office 365 network and engage with community members and fellow enthusiasts.
- Provide feedback and suggestions through UserVoice.
- Read about and watch videos related to all of the exciting new announcements across cloud, on-premises and hybrid.
—Bill Baer, @williambaer, senior product manager for the SharePoint team
Frequently asked questions
Q. Will the new experiences for Sites, Pages, Lists and Libraries be coming to SharePoint Server 2016?
A. Our goal is to enable all of our customers to take advantage of the innovation we deliver for SharePoint, whether on-premises, in the cloud or somewhere in between. As much as possible, we endeavor to bring the same set of innovations in the cloud to our on-premises customers. Some innovations cannot be packaged and delivered to on-premises, such as the Office Graph; for those scenarios, we bring them to our on-premises customers through hybrid experiences.
Q. Is SharePoint Server 2016 the last server release?
A. No, we remain committed to our customer’s on-premises and do not consider SharePoint Server 2016 to be the last on-premises server release.
Q. How will SharePoint Server 2016 be updated?
A. For our Software Assurance customers, we will deliver new innovation through our Public Update channel. These customers will be notified through our update process when a new innovation is available and provide the option for those customers to selectively enable those features.