The future of SharePoint

Updates allow users to create the perfect SharePoint hybrid deployment.

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In case you missed it, on May 4 Microsoft made it loud and clear it has resuscitated SharePoint On-Premises and there will be future versions, even beyond SharePoint Server 2016. However, by making you aware of the scenarios most appropriate for On-Premises and the scenarios where you can benefit from SharePoint Online, Microsoft is going to remain adamant about allowing you to create the perfect SharePoint hybrid deployment.

The future of SharePoint begins with SharePoint Online, meaning changes, features and functionality will first be deployed to SharePoint Online, and then rolled out to your SharePoint Server On-Premises deployment. This approach isn't much of a surprise, being that SharePoint Server 2016 On-Premises was "engineered" from SharePoint Online.

What can we expect to see in SharePoint Server 2016 On-Premises?

Well, if you are using a SharePoint hybrid environment, then you'll see changes in SharePoint Online first, but they will eventually make their way to SharePoint On-Premises. Unfortunately, I didn't see any indication of the latency of changes between SharePoint Online and SharePoint Server On-Premises.

Have you heard of OneDrive?

If not, you should become familiar with it, because SharePoint and OneDrive are going to be tightly integrated, and you'll be able to move between them seamlessly as you collaborate with others in your organization. OneDrive will be accessible via your browser, and you'll have an information pane while using your browser with OneDrive for Business.

Every release of SharePoint offers improvements in the mobile space, and this release is no different, as there are great strides in the mobile interface. The developers want your intranet in your pocket, as was mentioned several times.

Security and compliance are always concerns, and the new release of SharePoint will include improvements in data loss prevention (DLP), record management, SharePoint Insights that consolidates audit and compliance logs from both On-Premises and Office 365, the introduction of black and white lists for controlling who can access content, and with even more granular control of access coming later this year.

With hybrid in mind, navigation between On-Premises sites and cloud-based sites is made easier with the use of the Sites option located on the App Launcher, which is now available in SharePoint Server 2016. You can also add links to libraries, which allow you to access your cloud-based content remotely.

Another great announcement is that we no longer have to wait for new versions of SharePoint to obtain new features and functionality. Microsoft announced the use of SharePoint Server 2016 Feature Packs, which can be deployed to SharePoint Server 2016 On-Premises, that contain the new features and functionality introduced -- and hopefully debugged and tested -- in the SharePoint Online environment.

This is just a high-level overview of what was announced, but there is a lot more information about it that you can learn by viewing the on-demand Future of SharePoint presentation on this site.

For additional information on SharePoint Server 2016, you can attend "What's New in SharePoint Server 2016," now available from CBT Nuggets.

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