Microsoft Teams gets support for “Loop components

Teams Loop Components

Microsoft has rolled out an update for Microsoft Teams that brings the first set of “fluid” Loop Components. This has the ability to further innovate and disrupt the way people collaborate with their colleagues and perform daily tasks.

The update now introduces functionality from Microsoft Loop, a new set of fluid controls designed to further streamline the way people collaborate and cooperate on tasks in real-time. Loop brings about “portable components” that synchronise across the various aspects of the Microsoft 365 ecosystem.

As per this new blog post, “Loop components have now arrived for Microsoft Teams, unlocking a variety of opportunities to streamline workflows, as well as minimizing the number of apps workers are required to juggle“.

With Loop components, rather than share an entire document for co-authoring and collaboration through Office 365, users can instead post a specific paragraph, data table or list of actions into a Teams channel, where all members are able to view, edit and manipulate the content and see any changes and interaction in real-time. With Loop components, this content remains up-to-date wherever else the components have been deployed – which may be within a Loop page, Word document or PowerPoint presentation.

GIF showing Loop Components in Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Loop Components within Microsoft Teams

What is Loop?

Loop was first unveiled at Microsoft’s annual Ignite conference in November, and is made up of three elements: components, pages and workspaces.

Loop workspaces are shared spaces that contain everything relevant to a specific project. Loop pages, meanwhile, are described as “flexible canvases” where users can organise their various loop components and draw in files, links or data.

At the announcement, Microsoft said that “For years, the established patterns of work were clear. Communication took place via email and content creation was mostly documents, spreadsheets and presentations,”

In the last 18 months, the world has changed, and we have adapted to a new working environment where people had to complement traditional communication tools and in-person collaboration with alternative solutions. But we need to go further. That is why we are reimagining Office, adding new apps to respond to new opportunities, and making Office a universal, interactive canvas.”

Loop components have the potential to change the way remote and hybrid workers collaborate with their teams, and colleagues in a significant way. Microsoft say that additional components are expected to be announced at Microsoft Build next year by both Microsoft and third party application providers which will provide more seamless and collaborative ways to collaborate across the apps and services.


I wrote a blog on the Loop announcement previously, which you can read here.

What is Microsoft Loop?

At Microsoft’s semi annual Ignite conference this week, they announced a new productivity tool designed to make it easier than ever for teams to think, plan and create together across each and every Microsoft 365 app and service.

Microsoft Loop

Loop is a new app that brings together a new extensible and flexible canvas with load of adaptive /fluid components that can be moved freely and stay in sync across all the Microsoft 365 apps and services. Loop has been born to help boost productivity across the hybrid workplace at a time most workspaces look set to be ever more distributed.

Microsoft Loop

Loop is actually made up of the following key components.

  • Loop components
  • Loop pages
  • Loop workspace
  • Loop App (coming later)

Loop components

These are essentially then version 2.0 of the “Fluid components” Microsoft have in apps like Teams and SharePoint today. These components will allow users to more easily collaborate and work together across chats, emails, meetings, files, documents or Loop pages. These components can be simple – like  lists, tables, notes and tasks or more complex – like records from Microsoft Dynamics 365. There are a bunch of new components coming too including things like Live voting, status trackers and progress reports and developers will be able to build and sell their own.

Loop Pages

These are the flexible canvases that users use to bring together and organise all of their Loop components as well as the space in which they pull in or link other useful stuff such as files, Web links and other data relevant to their loop topic. These pages are the collaborative space (think Microsoft Whiteboard and OneNote on steroids). Microsoft say that the Loop Pages are optimised to help teams think and work together but can also start small grow as ideas, projects and teams grow and change.

Loop Workspace

These are shared spaces that allow teams to see and group everything that is important to project or team. Workspaces are there to make it quick and easy for teams to catch up and see what everyone else in the team is working on as well as to react/comment and contribute to others members  ideas. These workspaces allow people to collaborate both synchronously and asynchronously so work can get done whenever inspiration requires it and with whomever they are working with (or alone).

Availability

Microsoft say that some Loop components will start to roll out across Microsoft 365 apps such as Teams, Outlook and OneNote later this year but have also said that they will share more information about the availability of the Microsoft Loop app by early 2022.

Want to know more?

I don’t have any personal hands on experience of Loop as yet so adding a link to a hands-on video by a tech friend of mine Darrel.

First impressions by Darrel as a Service

You can see more of his reviews here: https://youtube.com/c/ModernWorkplaceChange