But Office 365 is just the same as on-premises functionality!

Clearly the title of this blog post is incorrect, but I had to raise it as recently someone made this comment to me. Their view was that they can run Exchange Server, SharePoint Server, and Skype for Business Server on-premises which would deliver the same functionality as Office 365.

What does Office 365 provide that you simply CANNOT deliver with on-premises systems? Focusing on the core feature set (without bringing in Project Online, Dynamics 365, EMS or others into it), it’s not a small list:

Product Description Where you see it
Exchange Online Protection Mail filtering service built into Exchange Online Behind the scenes
Advanced Threat Protection Protection against unknown malware & viruses, real-time protection against malicious URLs at time-of-click Behind the scenes
Exchange Online Archiving Yes you can have archiving on-premises, but not unlimited Client & web
Office 365 Groups Mix of document library, OneNote, Planner, Skype for Business, and SharePoint team site functionality Desktop, web & mobile
Microsoft Teams Chat-based workspace integrated with Office 365 Groups Desktop, web & mobile
OneDrive for Business Similar to Exchange Online Archiving, organisations can run OneDrive for Business on-premises but not provide unlimited storage Desktop, web & mobile
Skype Meeting Broadcast Host online meetings for up to 10,000 attendees Behind the scenes
Clutter / Focused Inbox Email sorting using machine learning, based on individual mail habits Behind the scenes
Delve Personal search & discovery of content Desktop, web & mobile
MyAnalytics (formerly Delve Analytics) Behavioural analytics based on mail & calendar Web
Yammer Enterprise social network platform Web & mobile
Office 365 Video Share & manage business videos Web & mobile
Planner Manage tasks on graphical boards (similar to Trello) Web
Sway Visual storytelling service Desktop, web & mobile
Power BI Interactive business intelligence dashboards Desktop, web & mobile
PowerApps Build mobile apps & logic flows Desktop, web & mobile
Microsoft Flow Automating workflows across apps and services (not just Office 365) Desktop, web & mobile
Office Graph Machine learning mapping connections between people & content Behind the scenes

 

Kirsty McGrath of OnPoint Solutions has created a wheel of the Office 365 services available, building on a similar one from Sharegate.

Touching Office 365 with the Surface Hub

Using touch with Office 365 is nothing new – we could do that on our Surface (and other touchscreen) devices for quite some time.

But nothing compares to doing that on a life-size screen like on the Surface Hub. Yesterday I wrote about my first experiences with the Surface Hub now that it had been installed in our office, so it was time to start coming up with practical applications in the Office 365 world.

Microsoft has been working hard over the years to make the entire Office suite touch-enabled to suit all form factors of devices, and all modalities of working. While I’ve enjoyed this on a Surface Pro 1 through to my current Pro 3, as well as Windows 10 Mobile, Android tablet and iPad – I wanted to see what this would be like on the Surface Hub.

The below Sway presentation shows our experiment – starting from a 1:1 session to a group call, and going through a number of different applications.

We chose to focus on the applications that were most visually appealing:

  • Delve & Delve Analytics
  • SharePoint
  • Sway
  • Planner
  • Power BI (not shown)