On March 19, day one of Microsoft's annual Convergence conference, company officials shed more light on how Yammer's enterprise social-networking technology will be integrated into Office 365 and SharePoint in the coming year-plus.
Microsoft officials originally shared a roadmap regarding this integration in November 2012. But today, officials provided more dates and more details around the integration of Yammer feeds into SharePoint.
Last fall, Microsoft officials said in the "immediate future" Yammer and SharePoint would be unified via a single ID/sign-on, shared document-management capabilties and feed aggregation. In the longer term, the Softies said, the two would be integrated from an email, IM and video-conferencing perspective.
Here's what we know now about the updated Yammer integration roadmap:
- The ability to replace the SharePoint/Office 365 newsfeed with Yammer is coming this summer. According to Microsoft, some customers have been unsure as to whether they should use Yammer or SharePoint for their news feed. As of today, Microsoft's answer is "go Yammer" if possible, whether using Office 365 and/or SharePoint Online in the cloud or SharePoint on-premises.
- Microsoft will provide guidance on how to replace the SharePoint newsfeed with the Yammer newsfeed in SharePoint Server on-premises this summer.
- Single sign-on is coming this fall as part of an Office 365 update.
- The user experiences of Office 365 and Yammer start to converge this fall. (A fairly blurry mock-up of what this means is embedded in this post above.) This is also when the new Yammer experience will add "rich document capabilities" and integration of the Office Web Apps' editing/coediting of Word, PowerPoint and Excel documents
As of 2014, Microsoft is going to be updating Office 365 with "new social enhancements" every 90 days. Office 365 already is on a quarterly (or more frequent) update schedule. These social enhancements will include integration between social and collaboration/email/IM/voice/video and line-of-business apps
And for those wondering when and whether any Yammer components will ever be hosted on Windows Azure, the answer is "nothing to share today."
Microsoft bought enterprise social-networking vendor Yammer for $1.2 billion in June 2012. At that time, Microsoft officials said they would integrate Yammer's technology with Office, Office 365, Dynamics (CRM) and Skype. Microsoft also committed to continue to provide Yammer as a standalone cloud service.