This year’s event “Build 2023” is all about the potential of AI to reshape the future of productivity by extending Microsoft 365 Copilot with plugins. This article will explore this transformative opportunity and all the other new features that will make the Microsoft 365 platform an even more powerful place to build collaborative apps.
Microsoft values developers and is committed to empowering them. With this in mind, the company has worked diligently to establish Teams Toolkit as the “golden path” for developers engaged in building collaborative apps and plugins for Microsoft 365 Copilot. For instance, the company is introducing the Microsoft Graph developer proxy, a valuable asset for creating resilient and high-performing apps.
Microsoft recognizes the significance of actionable insights for developers and has expanded the range of app insights available in the developer portal. These insights, including app usage and performance analytics, empower developers to optimize their apps and enhance user experiences. Additionally, Microsoft introduces the Microsoft 365 Developer Technology Adoption Program (TAP), offering developers early access to upcoming features and facilitating direct engagement with product groups, promoting collaboration and feedback exchange.
Message Extensions are essential for plugin development and Copilot extensibility. They are now available across multiple platforms, such as Outlook on web, Windows, and Android, significantly increasing their visibility to millions of Microsoft end-users.
Developers can take advantage of the 1.13 manifest for Teams apps with Outlook add-ins, simplifying app maintenance and validation. Microsoft plans to further support Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps, offering developers more opportunities for innovation.
The Live Share SDK is now generally available, empowering developers to create collaborative multi-user experiences during Teams meetings without dedicated backend code. Collaborative stage view, event pipeline for real-time meeting events, and the ability to show meeting tab experiences to anonymous users are now also generally available. These enhancements enable users to interact with shared content and chat with other collaborators in separate Teams windows, enhancing collaboration.
Microsoft places great importance on bots, recognizing their pivotal role in the overall AI story. They are excited to announce the public preview of a new Teams AI library, accessible through the Teams Toolkit. This library incorporates GPT-based common language models and user intent engines, streamlining the process of building AI-powered Teams apps. Noteworthy updates have been made to bots, granting developers a wide array of tools to unleash the full potential of AI in their applications.
Microsoft has introduced several features to simplify app distribution and management. These include App Geo-Filtering, which allows developers to target specific countries or regions for their apps through Partner Center. SaaS License Tracking and Management capabilities in Teams Admin Center (TAC) help customers and ISVs manage SaaS licenses for apps purchased through the Teams store. App auto-upgrade streamlines updates for users, and Contextual app discovery enhances the app discovery experience by suggesting similar apps in different contexts.
The private preview of Microsoft Syntex repository services is now available, providing a faster way to build file and document-focused apps using Microsoft Graph APIs. For custom at-scale analytics, OneDrive and SharePoint datasets are now available in Microsoft Graph Data Connect, empowering users to answer critical questions about information sharing and content capacity.
Microsoft is unifying the Outlook experience into a single web codebase, with a public preview of the Outlook for Windows client. Alongside this, we’re releasing new APIs for Outlook, Word, and Excel, offering exciting capabilities like sensitivity label attachments, email content prepending, and enhanced document management features.
Mesh is opening up new possibilities for shared immersive experiences, offering remote and hybrid workers a more natural way to connect. Developers can now create custom Microsoft Mesh environments and experiences tailored to their organizations’ unique needs, using Unity for 3D environments and cloud scripting for interactivity.
To enhance the developers’ experience building apps with Teams, Microsoft is introducing new features designed with developers as end-users in mind. Keyboard shortcuts, markdown improvements, code blocking formatting, and a compact chat list are among the enhancements rolling out to create a more efficient and developer-friendly environment.
The article discusses the developments showcased at Build 2023, focusing on the integration of AI and collaboration in app building. Microsoft emphasizes its commitment to empowering developers and introduces the Teams Toolkit as the “golden path” for building collaborative apps and plugins for Microsoft 365 Copilot. Various updates, including Microsoft Graph Toolkit and SDKs, aim to streamline app development. The dev portal now offers enhanced app insights for developers to optimize their apps, and Microsoft launches the Microsoft 365 Developer Technology Adoption Program (TAP), providing early access to upcoming features and facilitating collaboration with Microsoft 365 product groups.
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