Samsung to add more integration with Microsoft's Office apps, Windows 10 on Galaxy Note 20 devices

The new Samsung Galaxy Note 20 devices will support Office app synchronization, new Your Phone features and Microsoft's cloud gaming functionality.

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Credit: Microsoft

As part of the August 5 Galaxy Unpacked virtual event, Samsung announced plans for more integration between its new Galaxy Note 20 series devices and Microsoft's Windows 10 and Office apps. These integrations build on the existing partnership between the two companies which dates back several years.

Samsung officials said today that it will be supporting more of the coming capabilities of Microsoft's "Your Phone" app. Currently, using the existing "Link to Windows" integration feature, Samsung enables users to access their phones' messages, notifications, photos and calls directly from their Windows 10 PCs. Certain Samsung phones already allow users to control phone apps from their PCs, and the Note 20 Series devices will get this ability, as well. Microsoft is working to make this screen-mirroring of apps more complete with Your Phone. I guess this will be the way users who want Android apps on Windows can make this happen.

In addition, "later this year," users will be able to run multiple mobile apps side-by-side on their Windows 10 PCs, according to today's announcement. (These features will work on the new Galaxy S7 Tab, as well, which will be able to work as a second screen for Windows 10 for anyone who wants to use it that way.)

Update: Microsoft has a blog post explaining how this will work and how it takes Your phone forward. From the post:

"When you launch an app, it opens in a separate window, allowing you to multi-task and saving you the time and hassle of sign-in or set up. You can also pin your phone's Android apps to your Windows 10 taskbar or Start menu for quick and easy access, making things like checking out your social feed or ordering your lunch while you wrap up a conference call even easier, without ever picking up your phone. "

Update No. 2: Microsoft provided a few more specifics on this new "Apps" capability in Your Phone. This feature will be coming to a number of different Samsung phones first (list is here) for Windows Insiders who use Your Phone on Windows 10's October 2018 or higher. The list of features supported:

  • See a list of your installed Android apps directly within the Your Phone app.
  • Add your frequently used apps to the favorites section or search among your apps for even quicker access.
  • Launch any mobile app directly from your PC.
  • Apps and your mirrored phone screen launch in a separate window on your PC.
  • Pin your mobile apps to Windows Task bar or Start menu.
  • Stay in the know by keeping an eye on the app notification badging (unread notifications) in the All apps list or your Favorites.

Samsung and Microsoft also will be enabling the Samsung Notes app to sync to Microsoft OneNote and Outlook, and Reminders to sync with Outlook, To Do and Teams, officials said today. This synchronization capability will be available starting later this year in OneNote for the web, OneNote for Windows 10 and Outlook for the web. In order for it to work, users will need to be signed into the same Microsoft account (Note: The sync with OneNote is one-way/export only.)

Samsung also said it will be supporting xCloud game streaming (now known as "cloud gaming") with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate on the Galaxy Note 20 starting on September 15. The beta of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will be available September 15.

Starting on August 21, 2020, the Galaxy Note20 series will be available in carrier and unlocked through Samsung.com, carriers and retailers online.

Microsoft has been supporting Samsung Android devices with its own apps since at least 2015. This year, Microsoft will be launching its first Microsoft-branded Android phone, known as the Surface Duo. It will be interesting to see if the Duo changes the nature of the Microsoft-Samsung partnership over time.