Major Microsoft Changes Coming in 2022

Microsoft has a lot in store for their users in 2022. A new update for Windows 11 will be released sometime in 2022. As well as updates for new features for Office 365, Teams, and more. These features are designed to improve the user experience and make Microsoft services more accessible. Let’s look at the new features that will be introduced throughout 2022 below.

Windows 11

Windows 11’s first major annual update is expected in July, with several new features already being rumoured.

Shortly after Windows 11 was announced, Microsoft confirmed that the new OS would only get feature updates annually. This will be similar to macOS which just has one major update coming in 2022.

The exact release date of the update is still unclear. This would likely mean that October 2022 is not the date since Windows 11 was released last year on October 27th. However, some sources are saying that the expected release of the update will be at some point in July 2022.

New Windows 11 features are yet to be finalized and it’s unclear which features will make the 22H2 update. The one source of information for new features is Windows Latest, which claims that the update is codenamed ‘Sun Valley 2’. The first version of Windows 11 that shipped in 2021 was internally known as ‘Sun Valley’ throughout much of its development.

Software developer and writer Mayank Parmar said that Windows 11 is set to receive a major update in 2022 that will make it faster, smoother, and more modern. However, he failed to provide any details on which native apps will benefit from this new update.

As an earlier article from the same source suggested, it appears that drag-and-drop functionality for the taskbar is also expected to return, after Microsoft dropped it in Windows 11’s introduction. Microsoft said it is listening to feedback from users and that this will have an impact on their decisions going forward.

An additional feature that may be of interest is support for third-party providers within the Widgets tool. Windows 11 introduced this, but it’s currently limited to Microsoft’s stock apps. By adding third-party providers, it would be significantly more versatile.

There are also claims that you’ll be able to update the following features within Settings: Touch, Themes, Taskbar, Touch keyboard, installed apps, Advanced apps, Default apps and your Microsoft account. Language and region will also update automatically.

Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 subscribers get more frequent software updates than those who have purchased Office without a subscription. This means they have access to the latest features, security patches, and bug fixes. Below are a few updates that will be introduced to Microsoft 365.

 

AI-Enhanced Productivity

 

When it comes to AI, the capabilities have dramatically improved over the past decade. Whether you’re creating a map, sorting emails, organizing tables, or transcribing videos. These features allow you to achieve your goals in less time and with fewer tedious tasks which can help you meet your deadlines

 

Improved Security and Compliance Features

 

These days, security is integral to any organisation. Data loss prevention, message encryption, and other powerful features are becoming increasingly important in keeping your data secure.

Microsoft 365 understands that compliance is essential for any business because the failure to offer the right type of security features can have serious consequences. They have continually adjusted security measures and capabilities to comply with regulations, reduce the risk for your organisation, and beat cybercriminals.

 

Dynamic Communication and Collaboration

 

Microsoft Teams is the cornerstone of collaboration in Microsoft Office. There are many more collaborative applications you can take advantage of though, including the following:

  • SharePoint
  • Planner
  • Power Platform
  • Forms
  • Shifts

Office 365 is a one-time purchase that offers a Long-Term Servicing Channel, or LTSC, option for commercial users, as well as a personal use option. The cloud-based version, even with the increased pricing, may be more beneficial for some users. Choosing the subscription approach ensures you always have the latest version, including the latest safety features. It will continue to update to work with newer versions of Windows and includes a whole host of features.

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft has been slowly but surely integrating Microsoft Teams into more of their products. The company put a lot of work into making the collaboration platform inseparable from its suite of apps. They’ve also made it easier for people to use Microsoft Teams on their phones. Out of the many features in Teams, there are a few that are set to grow significantly throughout 2022.

Since Microsoft’s “metaverse” plan was first announced at Ignite, the company has been focusing on new ways to foster collaboration. For those of you unfamiliar with this concept, “Mesh for Microsoft Teams” promises a variety of new options for digital collaboration that include personalised avatars and 3-D environments.

Teams Connect, which is currently in private preview, is expected to be released in 2022. Teams Connect will allow organisations to work with other organisations, bringing chat features as well as the ability to share documents and collaborate on them simultaneously.

Microsoft Loop is currently available to Microsoft 365 “commercial customers” using Teams. Microsoft plans to update it over 2022 with new features. Touted by CEO Satya Nadella as “the next big breakthrough in Microsoft 365,” Loop lets you create notes, task lists, and tables within Teams that are then shared with other members of your team or company.

While Microsoft products are going to cost a little more than they used to, they come with a massive amount of capabilities as well. When you consider the additional functionality they’ve included, this is fair enough – the challenge is for you to make sure you’re using the extra functionality to increase value from their products.

If you need any assistance with your IT needs, Wizard IT can help. We provide comprehensive IT solutions ranging from Managed IT services, Helpdesk services, IT consulting, Cybersecurity, and more. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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