Microsoft has, at times, introduced new features for its subscription-only Office 365 suite - like the Sunrise integration with Calendar and smart car interoperability. However, they haven't always been huge hits and most people just ignore them and go back to making PowerPoint presentations and Word documents.
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Their latest addition to the suite, however, goes right back to Office's roots and should have companies like Trello shaking in their boots. Microsoft released the team productivity app Planner for free to eligible users - mostly Office 365 subscribers. This was teased back in September, and many people have really been looking forward to it.
Planner pretty much follows the now standard Trello and Asana model of team task management. There are custom columns for different work stages, you are able to create cards, and then drag them around to track progress. You can even evaluate how the group is doing on tasks. There are color coding options so that everyone can see whether an assignment is late, in progress, or completed. That in and of itself will give Planner a leg up on competitors, making it easier to see what (or who) is slowing down progress in the project.
Subscribers who have eligible plans (including Enterprise E1–E5, Business Essentials, Premium, and Education) should see the new app popping up in the next few weeks, according to an official blog post from Office 365. There hasn't been any announcements about buying the program by itself, though since Microsoft pretty much has a lock on the industry, most of us will get it eventually anyway.
See more in the video below:
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