Microsoft (MSFT - Free Report) recently announced a fresh design of ten Office icons on a Medium blog by Jon Friedman. Per Friedman, head of Microsoft Office design, the latest designs hold a cue for the subsequent strategic changes in making the Office suite more productive.
We believe the new 3D-ish overhaul for each of the ten icons (comprising Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneDrive, OneNote, Skype, SharePoint, Teams and Yammer), rightly indicates the evolution of Office suite from that of limited discrete utilization to being easily accessible on the go.
Notably, the latest 2018 version comes after a gap of five years. Microsoft is consciously incorporating collaborative measures, infusing artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities and increasingly integrating Cortana in a bid to boost efficiency and productivity in real time.
Talking about the technicalities of the latest design, Friedman points out the alteration in “letter-to-symbol ratio.” It now highlights the symbol taking the spotlight over the letter when compared with earlier symbols. The colors are bolder, lighter and friendlier giving the icons a fresh young look.
The designers have also attempted to emphasize the versatile and connected features of the suite.
Friedman informed, “Our new icons will begin rolling out across platforms in the coming months, starting with mobile and web.”
Addition of Capabilities to Benefit Top-Line
Microsoft is expected to benefit from growing user base of Office suite, Outlook mobile and Teams. Moreover, strong adoption of Skype by enterprises is likely to drive growth.
The new functionalities are anticipated to improve Skype’s competitive position in the messaging services market, against the likes of Tencent’s (TCEHY - Free Report) WeChat and Facebook’s (FB - Free Report) Messenger & WhatsApp, among other peers.
In Microsoft Teams, the company is adding automated translation support for meetings, shift scheduling for firstline workers, and new industry-specific offerings for healthcare and small businesses.
The company enhances its Office offerings by adding new functionalities and exploring new use cases. For instance, to strengthen its position in collaborative efforts, Microsoft connected Teams with Skype. Increasing integration of Cortana into its Office-Suite deserves a special mention.
Moreover, Microsoft is well-poised to gain on strong growth in no-code app building and business analytics in the cloud, driven by the company's investments in Power BI, Power Apps and Flow.
Overall, these initiatives are anticipated to aid it to catch up with Alphabet’s (GOOGL - Free Report) G-Suite and benefit top-line.
Microsoft carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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