Microsoft LoopSource: Microsoft

What you need to know

  • Microsoft has unveiled a new app for Microsoft 365 subscribers.
  • The app is called Loop and introduces a canvas-like work environment to Office.
  • It integrates Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote and Teams under one experience.

Microsoft has today unveiled a new app for Microsoft 365 subscribers dubbed "Loop" which is an app that attempts to reimagine and combine the traditional elements of Microsoft Office, including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote, and even Teams, into one canvas that enables groups of people undertaking projects to be more productive.

Today's announcement highlights three key areas of Microsoft Loop:

  • Loop components are atomic units of productivity that allow users to complete work and collaborate in the flow of work – on a Loop page, in a chat, email, document or online meeting. Loop components can be as simple as lists, tables and notes or as sophisticated as a customer sales opportunity from Dynamics 365. Because Loop components stay in sync across Microsoft 365 apps, users are always working with the latest information.
  • Loop pages are flexible canvases where users can organize their components and pull in helpful elements like links, files or data in ways that suit their specific project needs. Loop pages can start small and continue to grow to match the size of the ideas.
  • Loop workspaces are shared spaces that allow users to see and group everything important to their project. Loop workspaces make it easy for users to catch up on what everyone is working on, react to ideas and track progress toward shared goals.

Microsoft says more component types will be added over time, including voting tables, status trackers, notes, and task lists. Microsoft is also highlighting a feature called Context IQ that uses AI to turn insights into actions, powered by the Microsoft Graph. It supercharges Microsoft Editor with suggestions for relevant files or documents, or can find available calendar times for multiple people.

Context IQ is being implemented across all Microsoft 365 applications, including Microsoft Loop:

  • When you need to attach, insert, or share a filewith colleagues, Editor suggests a relevant file or document based on similar subjects or because you have created or worked on them before.
  • When you try to schedule a meeting in an Outlook email, Editor will recognize that effort and will recommend times when everyone is available, saving you time and context switching.
  • When tagging colleagues in a file using the @ symbol in a commentor email, Editor recommends potential people to tag based on colleagues you currently work with or stakeholders you have previously tagged for document reviews.
  • When you may be collaborating on a sales opportunity, and need to pull in Dynamics data, Editor will suggest related Dynamics 365 information as a Loop component allowing you to update andtake an action on it in the flow of your work.
  • When entering data or objects as you write, Editor suggests information such as a frequent flyer number when booking a flight online or a sales message when collaborating in Teams.