A small glimpse into what’s coming in Office “15” for users

I stumbled upon some nuggets pertaining to Microsoft’s upcoming Office “15” suite: New Office Web Extensions

Like extensions in your favorite web browser, you’ll be able to write and use add-ons that extend the Office UI. These extensions will be HTML and XML-based and be plugged into a Web Extension Framework. Office Web Extensions will have the ability to show custom UI in task panes and content areas; integrate into the dictionary; and have the ability to target specific form factors such as the PC, tablet, and phone.

Lync to embrace H.264 standard

Current versions of Lync require that you use Microsoft’s proprietary Real-Time Video (RTV) codec. Lync “15”, however, will support the sending and receipt of H.264 encoded video, with some nice server-side additions such as Simulcast support. (This, for example, lets organizations transmit higher quality video to local desktops while sending lower quality video to mobile devices.)

Word can “broadcast” too

Office 2010 introduced the ability to broadcast Powerpoint presentations quickly and easily over the Internet. Office “15” will now bring this functionality to Word – both on the web (Web App) and PC, confirming a previous report on The Verge.

Make nicer timelines with Excel

At some point, you’ve probably had the need to visualize data in timeline form using Excel, but gave up due to the amount of work involved. Excel “15” will now feature Timeline views that plug into PivotTables, charts, etc.