Microsoft Announcements from Inspire 2017

Announcement Round Up!

More from the Microsoft Inspire 2017 event! Here’s a roundup of some of the most notable technology and business announcements from #MSInspire. If you missed it, Inspire is Microsoft’s annual partner event in Washington DC. The event attracts 17,000 Microsoft partners from all over the world to learn, network and transform their businesses.

Technology Announcements

Photo by: @HeatherHDoran

Codenamed ‘Business Communication Suite’ – Microsoft 365 officially made its appearance at Inspire 2017. Microsoft 365 is a new bundle in the Office 365 product family that combines Office 365 packages with Windows 10, and Security features.

Here are the official package names and descriptions:

  • Microsoft 365 Enterprise includes Office 365 Enterprise, Windows 10 Enterprise, and Enterprise Mobility + Security and is offered in two plans – Microsoft 365 E3 and Microsoft 365 E5.  Both plans provide customers with a complete set of productivity and security capabilities, the E5 version provides the latest and most advanced innovations in security, compliance, analytics, and collaboration.
  • Microsoft 365 Business is designed for small-to-medium sized businesses (SMB) and includes Office 365 Business Premium, security and management features for Office applications and Windows 10 devices, upgrade rights to Windows 10, and a centralized IT console. It will be available in public preview starting August 2nd. 

More Technology Announcements

Azure Stack: Other big announcements included the official release of “Azure Stack” – which includes the ability to install Azure’s secret public cloud sauce onto your on premise hardware and manage it from a single pane of glass. This signals really the change being seen across IT which is increasingly democratizing our customer’s choices.  You can now pick a platform in Windows and run it seamlessly across premise or cloud and manage it the same way and move it back and forth as needed.

Microsoft Dynamics 365’s new integration with LinkedIn. Since buying LinkedIn last year, Microsoft has used it as a source of BI data and revenue. This integration announcement really marks the first time a  CRM system has been directly connected to one of the world’s largest social media platforms. Not as a connected integration, but the two systems running together in a way that can only be achieved when they are owned by the same company.

Business Announcements

The next big announcement was the creation of the ‘One Commercial Partner’ program. In recent years, Microsoft partners have been challenged by identifying the segment a customer was located in and then which Microsoft team to engage with. Microsoft has torn down those walls giving their managed partners a single point of contact and advocate. From ITP’s perspective this greatly increases our ability to serve the small and midmarket’s. With this change, our customers will all be in the same categorization pool and be able to receive equal attention from the world’s largest tech company.

That’s a wrap! Tomorrow we’ll be sharing some final thoughts on the event. If you haven’t already, check out the live updates from the event by following the #MSInspire on Twitter and Facebook.