MICROSOFT QUARTERLY HIGHLIGHTS, PRODUCT RELEASES, AND ENHANCEMENTS
Every quarter Microsoft delivers hundreds of products, either as new releases or services or as enhancements to current products and services. These releases are a result of significant research and development investments, made over multiple years, designed to help customers be more productive and secure and to deliver differentiated value across the cloud and the edge.
Following are the major product releases and other highlights for the quarter, organized by product categories, to help illustrate how we are accelerating innovation across our businesses while expanding our market opportunities.
Microsoft 365 Consumer / Commercial
Windows 365 introduces a new way to experience Windows 10 and Windows 11, taking the operating system to the Microsoft Cloud and securely streaming the full Windows experience on personal or corporate devices.
Office Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC)is designed for specific scenarios that require a locked-in-time version of familiar productivity tools, such as regulated devices that cannot accept feature updates, process control devices on the manufacturing floor, and specialty systems that cannot connect to the internet.
Microsoft Endpoint Manager updates include:
· Full unified endpoint management for Windows 365.
· Windows 10 device diagnostics collects data-including logs, event viewers, registry keys, and command outputs-and saves to the cloud.
· Expanded capabilities for Apple products, including those in Microsoft Intune that enable administration to review, detect and edit the successful installation of apps on a Mac device before deployment. Potential issues can therefore be addressed in advance, resulting in a reduced number of support cases and easier app deployments.
· Update for new Apple systems including flexible administrative controls to protect sensitive information for iOS and iPadOS and ways to prevent accidental data loss on MacOS.
Outlook updates include:
· Suggested people in Outlook mobile:Microsoft Search on web and mobile will suggest people that are relevant based on emails received from that person.
· Actionable search:Search in Outlook mobile will help populate results associated with an event, such as Join or RSVP, when searching for calendar items. These Calendar search answers are intent-driven and aim to provide results that are most relevant.
· Pinned messages: Users will now have the ability to pin messages, moving the item to the top of inboxes for easy future access for Outlook users on web and mobile.
Microsoft Immersive Reader technology, currently built into Word, OneNote, Outlook, Teams, and other Microsoft apps, expands to documents stored in OneDrive and SharePoint.
Updates to SharePoint news service deliver an intelligent view of news based on users' role or location, and further personalized news feed based on signals in Microsoft Graph about where, how, and with whom they work. Users can now prioritize important news and announcements and boost the visibility of a news article for a set time.
Users can @mentions in Microsoft List comments, notifying colleagues and providing a direct link to the item.
Updates to Microsoft Lens (previously Office Lens) enable the transcription of handwritten notes, and improve quality and performance in the Lens app, as well as the Microsoft 365 productivity apps that integrate with Lens technology, such as Microsoft Teams, Outlook, and Office.
Teams meetings and calling connect with Apple CarPlay, enabling users to join Teams meetings and make calls safely using Siri hands-free audio experience. Users can also look up call history, make a call or send messages to one or more Teams contacts.
Slide translate in PowerPoint Live in Teams enables meeting attendees to see a personalized view of the slide where text is translated in their chosen language. This feature supports 19 languages with more to come.
Teams Live Events are optimized to customer's networks with Peer5 eCDN support. Enterprise Content Delivery Networks (eCDN) can alleviate limited corporate network downlink bandwidth to deliver high-quality video streaming and broadcasting for large audiences of employees.
New features in Teams allow users to reply to a specific message. The original message will be quoted in the reply text box, helping to clarify the message's context in 1:1, Group and Meeting chats.
Operator Connect offers a quick and simple way to enable PSTN calling for Teams, using services from telephony operators. Administrators can select their desired operator in the Teams Admin Center, and provision phone numbers to their users, with no required hardware.
We've added the ability to Seamlessly transfer calls between devices on Teams Phone without interrupting the call.
Multi-Geo support extends to include Microsoft Teams, helping customers meet data residency requirements by giving organizations the ability to specify where their Teams core customer data sits.
With the Salesforce app in Microsoft Teams, sales and service teams using Salesforce Sales Cloud or Service Cloud can bring account data and records into their Teams workspace.
Teams integrates with Learning Management System Canvas, giving educators the ability to create class teams based on the enrollment roster of their courses in Canvas.
Recent innovations for Microsoft's Government customers include Guest Access, Breakout Rooms, large meetings, live transcription with speaker attribution, live events with live captions, network planner for government clouds, and more.
Dynamics 365 Intelligent Order Management offers AI-powered order insights to empower business professionals to gain real-time cross-channel inventory visibility and advanced analytics capabilities for better decision-making processes.
Dynamics 365 Marketing customer journey orchestration enables organizations to react to customers' actions in real-time. Journeys can be triggered based on real-world and virtual interactions and includes the ability to respond to customers in real-time.
Dynamics 365 Fraud Protection pay-as-you-go option gives organizations the ability to activate fraud protection transactions with no long-term commitment.
Microsoft Power Platform
The next-gen platform for Power BI Premium meets the demands of a wide range of analytics solutions: from self-service business datasets, to centrally curated and distributed pixel-perfect reports, and anything in between. The new platform assures reliable support for large scale analytics, simple low-overhead administration, and introduces "autoscale" - an optional add-on that provides automatic, temporary capacity upscaling to address the ever-dynamic demand for computing power.
LinkedIn updates include:
· Launched Dark Mode across our consumer Flagship experience, a native 1:1 video experience leveraging Teams, and remote, hybrid and onsite filters in LinkedIn Job Search and the Open to Work feature on Profile.
· Expanded LinkedIn Learning Hub availability, helping companies consolidate their learning resources into a skill-building platform that empowers employees to develop the right skills and grow their organization. Also added the Office Hours feature, giving instructors the ability to host live events on LinkedIn Learning, and a 'hide names and photos' option to help hirers reduce bias during the hiring process.
· Added Articles on Pages, which gives companies the ability to create long-form content; Brand Lift, a new feature that allows users to measure the impact of LinkedIn Ads on their brand; and Live Events to help marketers unlock greater exposure and engagement on LinkedIn.
· Launched Account Buyer Interest in Sales Navigator to help sales professionals prioritize their book of business and identify the best time to reach out to an account based on their interest level.
Security, Compliance & Identity
Passwordless sign in for Microsoft accounts increases security and makes sign in easier. Users can use password alternatives-the Microsoft Authenticator app, Windows Hello, a security key, or a verification code-to sign into apps and services.
Microsoft Azure Purviewcreates a unified map of data assets and their relationships with automated data discovery and sensitive data classification, making personal data easier to manage, glean insights, and govern.
Microsoft 365 users can now co-author on Microsoft Information Protection encrypted documents, enabling greater collaboration on Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents encrypted with sensitivity labels.
Compliance Manager simplifies compliance and helps reduces risks by giving organizations the ability to assess, monitor, and improve their compliance posture for their Microsoft 365 data using over 300 universal regulatory assessment templates for non-Microsoft clouds users, such as Salesforce and SAP in Compliance Manager.
New features in in Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) help monitor and troubleshoot provisioning deployment with the use of provisioning logs using the UI, API, or by exporting the data as a CSV. Additional features include custom dashboards, alerts, and queries on the data using Azure Monitor integration.
Administrators in Azure AD groups can assign a role to a group, helping to improve existing governance workflows and enabling group membership audits to ensure that only legitimate users are members.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365 provides new Safe Links capabilities to increase phishing protection, previously available to email users, for Teams users.
Azure Sentinel manages threat intelligence in public and Azure government cloud.
Updates to Azure Defender plans policies give users the build-in option to enforce enablement for selected subscriptions and resource plans.
New capabilities in Microsoft Endpoint Data Loss Prevention (DLP) include:
· Microsoft supports up to five built-in justifications that can be selected by users when they override a DLP policy.
· Microsoft Endpoint DLP provides customers the ability to create and enforce DLP policies that regulate the sharing of sensitive data to Bluetooth devices using the same DLP policy creation and management solution they currently use to support DLP across Microsoft's fully unified DLP offering with the experience their users are already familiar with.
· Microsoft Endpoint DLP provides customers the ability to create and enforce DLP policies to regulate the sharing of sensitive data over an RDP session, using the same familiar DLP policy tools and user experience from Microsoft's fully unified DLP offering.
· Other updates relating to display and activity include:
· Customers will be able to display sensitivity label activities around Label applied, label changed, and label removed in Activity Explorer.
· Customers will be able to display data from Exchange, SharePoint, OneDrive, and Teams in Activity Explorer.
· Customers will be able to display Sensitive information, Sensitivity labels, and Retention labels detected on files/documents in OneDrive in the Content Explorer.
· Customers will be able to display Azure data logged by AIP clients and scanner audits.
The following is a select list of generally available Azure products, services and enhancements for the quarter. A full list can be found at https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/updates/.
Azure Security and Management
Azure Firewall Premium provides next generation firewall (NGFW) capabilities for highly sensitive and regulated environments utilizing Firewall Policy.
Azure Monitor enhances support for Availability Zones, increasing resilience by using AZ-aware infrastructure, such as zone redundant storage (ZRS) accounts that are managed across zones, and not limited to a specific zone.
Confidential computing using Always Encrypted with secure enclaves for Azure SQL Database increases the security benefits of Always Encrypted to users applications that process personally identifiable information and other data that requires rich computations.
The Azure Cosmos DB continuous backup with point in time restore helps more users recover from accidental data modification or deletion. The continuous backup mode for the Core (SQL) API and Azure Cosmos DB API for MongoDB enables users to perform a granular restore via the Azure portal, Azure CLI, Azure Resource Manager, and PowerShell to any point in time in the past 30 days.
Azure Purviewhelps to maximize the value of users' on-premises, multicloud, and software as a service (SaaS) data with this unified data governance solution. Azure Purview includes turnkey integrations with Azure Synapse Analytics, SQL Server, Power BI, Azure SQL and more to automatically capture lineage relationships between data assets.
Azure Stream Analytics Tools for Visual Studio Code enables users to write code with rich IntelliSense to create Azure Stream Analytics projects and easily use the built-in Git support from VS Code for source control. This tool also provides Job Monitor which has an intuitive UI integrating job diagrams, metrics, diagnostic logs, activity logs, and intermediate results.
Azure HDInsight is now available in the New West US 3 region. The full-spectrum, open-source analytics service uses open-source frameworks such as Hadoop, Apache Spark, Apache Hive, LLAP, Apache Kafka, Apache Storm, R, and more.
Azure Serverless and App Dev Services
Availability Zone support for the public multi-tenant Azure App Service enables users to build high-availability into their application architecture.
Application insights for Java & Node.js App Services allows more users to enable application insights for Java apps running on App Services Linux or code-based Windows and Node.js apps on App Services Windows.
Updates to App Service Environments (ASE) v3, available through Isolated v2 App Service plans, include a simplified deployment experience enabling a highly secure, isolated app hosting environment for users to run on their most sensitive web workloads.
Developer Tools, Services, and GitHub
GitHub Codespaces, a cloud-based development environment for all GitHub Teams and GitHub Enterprise Cloud customers, provides full development environments with up to 32 cores that can be accessed from a web browser, Visual Studio Code, or using SSH.
Windows Server IoT 2022 supports fixed appliances in large scale compute, connections, or storage workloads where processing on the edge is required for latency, bandwidth, cost, data residency or privacy requirements.
To further our commitment to supporting data residency, stability and resilience in the cloud, Azure Availability Zones include our Norway East datacenter region, bringing higher availability and asynchronous replication across Azure regions for disaster recovery protection.
FastTrack for Azure
The Azure Migration and Modernization Program (AMMP), previously called Azure Migration Program, covers a wider breadth of migration and modernization offerings across apps, infrastructure and data, including support for Azure Arc. Updates include Extended Security Updates for Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2, and SQL Server 2012, free only on Azure. Customers running these releases of Windows Server and SQL Server on-premises will have the option to purchase Extended Security Updates.
Xbox and Nike announced "Space Jam: A New Legacy" bundle on Nike SNKRS app, and "Space Jam: A New Legacy - The Game," a fan inspired "beat 'em up." Xbox also launched three additional "Space Jam: A New Legacy" Xbox Wireless controllers each with its own unique design inspired by the movie.
"Microsoft Flight Simulator" became available on Xbox Series X|S after a successful launch on PC in 2020. Updated features include Discovery Flights, world exploration improvements, enhanced flight training and assistance, and optimized controls to welcome console players into the fold.
Minecraft launched the "Echoing Void DLC" for "Minecraft Dungeons," the sixth expansion released for the game in just over a year since its initial release. The team also released the "Minecraft Dungeons Ultimate Edition" SKU which bundles together all six expansion packs for Xbox Game Pass, Xbox devices, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC and, for the first time ever, on Steam.
Age of Empires launched "The African Royals," the next expansion for "Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition," featuring two brand new civilizations, Historical Battles, maps and achievements. "Dawn of the Dukes," the second expansion for "Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition," also launched, containing two additional civilizations and new units.
The Aqua Shift Special Edition controller became available as the first Special Edition Xbox Series X|S controller to feature rubberized side grips with a unique dual color swirl on every unit.
Double Fine Productions released "Psychonauts 2."
Undead Labs launched its Homecoming update for "State of Decay 2," adding six new bases, unique weapons and outfits, and the return of Trumbull Valley from" State of Decay."
Xbox rolled out updates to the Xbox app for PC to integrate Xbox Remote Play and Xbox Cloud Gaming (Beta) directly into the app on Windows 10 (or later) PCs. With this new update, gamers now can play some of their favorite console titles on a wide range of PCs.
Xbox Cloud Gaming, as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, expanded to Brazil, Mexico, Australia and Japan, as announced at Tokyo Game Show. Players in each of these countries can play over 100 Xbox Game Pass titles that are cloud-enabled and localized for their country on supported Windows PCs, Android and Apple devices.
Microsoft Search, Advertising, and News
Microsoft Advertising recently released products include:
· Marketing with Purpose Business Attributes enables advertisers to differentiate their brand from their competitors by highlighting unique attributes that showcase how the brand demonstrates responsibility, how the brand's values align with those of their customers and how the brand is being inclusive. Attributes include Black-owned, Carbon neutral, Halal, LBGTQ+, Wheelchair accessible and more.
· Unique to Microsoft Advertising, Video Extensions enables advertisers to show eye-catching interactive video ads to customers searching for offerings. Videos submitted for Video Extensions can also be used for Microsoft Audience Network Video Ad resources, enabling advertisers to scale these assets across multiple campaign types for message consistency.
· Optimization Score helps advertisers better understand account performance and potential and offers recommendations specifically tailored by account.
· Disclaimers in ads make it easy for advertisers to inform customers about specific business information and be compliant with policies.
· Target Impression Share, the newest addition to our suite of automated bidding strategies, helps advertisers increase visibility and awareness, maximize impression share to stay on top of the competition, and increase volume by optimizing ad placements.
· Product conversion goals give advertisers who use Shopping Campaigns or other feed-based campaigns gain a better understanding of the products their customers are buying.
Recent Microsoft Edge features include:
· Microsoft Start is a personalized news feed and collection of informational content that provides news from premium publishers and timely updates tailored to users interests.
· Microsoft Edge offers a simpler way to access expert ratings and online customer reviews. To access ratings and reviews, all users need to do is browse for an item at their favorite store and click on the blue tag on the address bar. There, they will find expert online reviews from trusted sources for the product they are viewing. They will also see the average customer star rating across online retailers.
· New checkout features make online shopping simpler and easier with express checkout.
· The new password health dashboard tells users whether the password they have saved is strong enough or used across other sites, helping to protect against password vulnerability and online threats.
· Tab groups allow users to organize tabs by name and color for easy reference or to save space. This feature also includes tab preview, which shows a preview of the tab when you hover over it.
· The Microsoft Outlook browser extension brings together the power of mail, calendar, contacts, and tasks while letting users stay focused on the web page they're visiting. Without opening a new tab, users can send and receive email, and manage their calendar, tasks and more. Users can quickly access my Outlook work account or personal Outlook.com or Hotmail account without switching to another tab or app.
· Microsoft Edge moved to the new 4-week major release cycle cadence announced by Google. To help enterprise customers looking for an extended timeline to manage updates, Microsoft Edge now offers an Extended Stable option aligned to a longer, 8-week major release cycle.
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