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Microsoft updates SharePoint for the modern era

Microsoft will be releasing a new version of its SharePoint software that utilises data from Office in an effort to compete against Dropbox, Slack and Box when it comes to workplace collaboration.

SharePoint has been used by companies for 15 years to organise documents, manage content and build intranet sites. The service has 190 million users in total but it has faced increasing competition from rival startups over the past few years.

Microsoft has decided to totally revamp SharePoint and it will be releasing mobile apps for iOS, Android and Windows 10 mobile to allow users to easily access their documents on the go. The iOS app will arrive first at the end of June while the Android and Windows 10 Mobile versions will be released later in the year.

SharePoint Online document libraries will also be available on the mobile versions of OneDrive and users will be able to copy documents and files from OneDrive to SharePoint.

To set SharePoint apart from its competitors, the software will analyse information gathered from Office such as lists of participants in a meeting, collaborators on documents, and frequent email contacts to create what the company calls Office Graph. This new feature will discover news, reports, initiatives and other information that will be tailored to individual users.

The main goal of Office Graph and of the new version of SharePoint is to increase productivity. Microsoft has designed the software to help employees quickly find information that pertains to their work while limiting distractions.

Hopefully it is not too late for the company to regain some of the users it has lost to the likes of Dropbox, Box, and Slack.

Image Credit: JuliusKielaitis / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
After living and working in South Korea for seven years, Anthony now resides in Houston, Texas where he writes about a variety of technology topics for ITProPortal.