How Microsoft Loop fuses collaborative editing with Microsoft Office's familiarity
Microsoft has announced a new Office-style application called Microsoft Loop designed to resemble collaborative document editors such as Notion and Coda. However, some elements from the Office suite have been retained for familiarity and it appears to do the trick. In fact, Office files have been integrated to work with Loop, unlike alternatives. Here's what we know about Loop.
Loop takes Microsoft's Fluid Framework one step further
Microsoft Loop is the company's rebranding of Microsoft Fluid Framework comprising independent blocks of collaborative Office content that can be shared, copied, pasted, and worked on collaboratively. Loop has three elements—Loop components, Loop pages, and Loop workspaces. Components are content blocks that can be included in Outlook emails, calendars, Teams channels, and Loop pages. Loop components can be edited in real-time.
Components and pages can be overseen using Loop workspaces
Loop pages are individual canvases where people can share and collaborate on components like on a whiteboard. However, components can be edited from other apps like Outlook and Teams and one can insert or share components created outside Loop, too. Loop workspaces are like dashboards where several components and pages can be viewed simultaneously. It will also mention who is editing those items.
Everyone working on a component need not be added specifically
Thanks to the support for editing from apps outside Loop, everyone doesn't need to be added to a Loop page to collaborate on a component (document). This is a huge advantage over the likes of Google Docs. Microsoft says, "Workspaces make it easy for you to catch up on what everyone is working on, react to others' ideas, or track progress toward shared goals."
Loop is geared to cater to boom in remote work
In a blog post announcing Loop, Microsoft 365 GM Wangui McKelvey said that people want to transition from the confines of using Office to more fulfilling solutions suited for remote work. "New kinds of content, formats, and channels demanded more flexible, powerful, and fluid tools to allow everyone to...collaborate at their own pace. So, Microsoft Office is changing with the times," she said.
Loop components coming to Teams, Outlook, OneNote this month
Presently, there is no indication about when Microsoft will roll out Loop inside Office apps, although the company has been talking about it for over a year at this point. This month, Loop components will be available on Teams, Outlook, and OneNote. McKelvey said, "We will share more about the availability of the Microsoft Loop app in the upcoming months."