It seems strange to think that Microsoft Ignite 2017 kicked off over a week ago, but here we are, with the conference already to our backs, and the looming SharePoint 2018 North American Conference coming up in May 2018 (sponsored, but not run, by Microsoft).
I wanted to take the time to highlight some of my favorite announcements, that summarize several things we have to look forward to in SharePoint, along with links to where you can learn more information about them. Without further ado…
- Hub Sites – So you’ve created multiple Modern Team Sites and Modern Communication Sites, but there’s no way to really “contain” or “group” these sites together? Thankfully, that’s exactly what Hub Sites are – a way to relate sites together with a shared navigation, theme, and logo, as well as consolidated news, activities, and search. Hub Sites can’t connect to other Hub Sites, and a site can only be related to one Hub Site, but this ability to loosely couple sites together is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
- Site Collection App Catalogs – Not only will developers love the ability to deploy their solutions to a single site collection during testing, but this is a highly requested feature that will help organizations isolate apps to specific site collections, as needed.
- SharePoint Framework (SPFx) End-Points and Permission Scopes – Do you like the idea of SPFx handling the passing of the current user’s credentials for you on common services like Power BI, Flow, and PowerApps, and providing you with the ability to do the same for your own custom services? Then you’re going to love this upcoming feature.
- SharePoint Framework (SPFx) Tenant Properties – Think “property bag” for your tenant. While some may find only having these values scoped at the tenant level limiting, I see scenarios in the future where we’ll prefix site-specific values with their related url or id, to essentially allow for any type of scenario, at any scope.
- Improved Search – Get ready to see a new and improved search. Although the changes will be most visible when viewing search results, there’s so much more behind the scenes, with images now having their text indexed (the sample at Ignite showed scanned receipts and the ability to search that content). In addition, Bing for Business is coming, which will ultimately allow you to serve your Office 365 results right along with Bing’s regular Internet results.
It’s definitely a great time to be an Office 365 user or developer, and it just keeps getting better. Check back here for updates and code samples as more features become available!