What is Microsoft Loop?
On November 2, 2021, Microsoft announced Loop, a canvas-like app that takes advantage of today’s modern hybrid computing world. Loop enables “teams to think, plan, and create together” through the use of dynamic elements which allows end-users to work in a real-time, collaborative cloud-based environment.
According to Microsoft, Loop appears to have been born out of the fast-tracked digital environment thrust upon society by the COVID-19 pandemic. With more organizations providing their employees the flexibility to work remotely, new technology is needed to bridge the gap between collaboration and execution. This is where Microsoft Loop comes into the picture.
What does Microsoft Loop look like?
Loop is broken down into three elements, and it’s these elements collectively from which Loop derives is capabilities. Let’s look at each element individually.
Workspaces are at Loop’s top-level organizational chart. They allow for a high-level view of a project and all its related activity. According to Microsoft, workspaces allow users to “catch up on what everyone is working on, react to others’ ideas, or track progress toward shared goals.”
Pages allow for dynamic collaboration within a workspace. It also allows users to organize their components (see below) via a non-linear canvas that can shrink or expand based on use. Microsoft states that pages are “optimized for thinking together and getting work done – they can start small and continue to grow to match the size of your ideas and projects.”
Components are the granular parts of Loop that are organized within pages. Components include things like notes, tasks, and lists. Microsoft is planning on introducing new components with the launch of Loop, to include voting tables and a status tracker. Currently, components are able to be integrated into Loop from a variety of data sources, including Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Dynamics 365.
Where does Microsoft Loop stand currently?
Microsoft Loop is a promising app, bringing teams together digitally and allowing projects to be seen and worked on in one centralized location. Most importantly, however, Loop aims to keep teams in sync and on track with their work.
While the full version of Loop is not yet available (and, as of this writing, a release date has not been announced by Microsoft), some Loop components are available to use in Microsoft Teams. Presently, Loop components can be added to a Teams chat, group chat, or meeting chat. Simply click the Manage Extensions ellipses button below the chat box and search for Loop. (Note that your tenant must have a valid enabled Loop registration).
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