Microsoft’s Arrow Launcher for Android has slowly but surely becoming a solid launcher for Android devices. The company, through the Microsoft Garage project team, has continually been adding features, improving the stability, and the performance of the launcher.
If you are a heavy Microsoft user, you should consider Arrow Launcher for your launcher. You can read my review of it here.
Back in June, in the 3.5 update to Arrow Launcher, the introduced a new feature, Arrow Hub. Arrow Hub allows you to easily sync photos, documents, videos and anything you have in your Android device’s clipboard to the cloud which you can then get to via the web or OneDrive. It is brilliantly simple and is an effective way to get files from your phone to your PC, Mac or Chromebook.
So how does it work and how do you get to your files? In this How To I will outline how the feature works on your Android device and how to get to those files.
Prerequisite: This How To assumes that you are running Arrow Launcher on your Android phone. If you are not, you can download it free from the Play Store. It also assumes that you have a Microsoft account that you can use with Arrow Launcher, OneDrive, etc.
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Microsoft is in the process of rolling out a new integration between their personal assistant, Cortana, and the Skype messaging client. The new integration essentially makes Cortana a chat-bot inside of Skype, allow it to give you suggestions for replies to messages, get weather and news information, as well as facts and other information. In order for it to work, you have to give Cortana various permissions for Skype and since it is rolling out now, not everyone is seeing it just yet.
If this sounds familiar as an Android user, it should. Essentially Microsoft is replicating what Google has done with Allo and Google Assistant which, for Windows 10 PC users and those who are heavily in the Microsoft ecosystem, this is great news.
Continue reading “Microsoft Rolling Out Integration of Cortana and Skype on Android”
Microsoft has rolled out an update to the SharePoint app for Android that brings much improved access to communication sites in your enterprise deployment. The update, version 1.8.1 for those keeping score at home, now brings access to SharePoint that, to this point, has pretty much been limited to the desktop. With this update, the app actually makes using the sites in your corporate SharePoint accessible and usable.
Within the app, you can now view pages, news, navigation and search with this update. That means it is much easier to find content from various sites within your enterprise while you are on the go.
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Amazon and Microsoft have been teaming up and it is for the benefit of end users. The Seattle based eRetailer (and now grocery store owner) has announced a new skill for Amazon Alexa, the company’s personal assistant, that will allow you to access Microsoft Cortana, Microsoft’s personal assistant, from your Amazon Echo.
It may sound a little confusing but it is a big win for the some 145 million active monthly users of Cortana. Essentially, it works like this: If you have an Amazon Echo, you can say “Alexa, Open Cortana” and then give Cortana a command. This will allow you to access specific information that you have in Cortana but don’t necessarily want to have to duplicate in Alexa if you are a marginal Echo user.
Eventually, both Amazon and Microsoft want to get the integration to the point where users won’t have to specifically call out Cortana but rather the Echo device itself determine which personal assistant can provide the best answer on-the-fly and leverage it automatically.
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Microsoft’s personal assistant, Microsoft Cortana, has a new update rolling out in the beta channel this morning. The new beta build is version 2.9.3 and while it doesn’t bring new features, it does bring a lot of performance improvements and stability to the app.
The update outlines three key areas of focus in the release notes:
- Improved app performance
- Stabilized the app
- Fixed several crash bugs
While that isn’t overly exciting, the fact is that Microsoft has been working pretty hard on getting Cortana solid for Android. Having tested out this new beta build this morning, I can say it is much faster than the current stable channel build and seems to be far more reliable.
Continue reading “Latest Microsoft Cortana Beta Brings Stability Improvements”
The Android apps team over at Microsoft has been busy and has rolled out another update to the popular Microsoft To-Do app. This is the second update to this app this month and more-or-less is a package of refinements on the new features that were introduced earlier this month.
The updated build is version 1.12.32 for those keeping score at home. If you have the app already installed on your Android phone or tablet, the update should come to you over the course of the next few days via an OTA update. For those who haven’t installed it, you can download it free from the Play Store.
This update focuses on refinements. In the last update, the ability to search notes came to the app but with this update, To-Do will now show you the titled of a To-Do title of a particular note. In other words, it makes finding all of your notes in Microsoft To-Do a bit more reliable.
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Microsoft has released a significant update to the task management app, Microsoft To-Do, for Android. The updated build is version 1.11.29 for those keeping score at home and brings some nice improvements and new features.
First, and for those who have managed accounts (like Office 365) you can now add those accounts to To-Do. Previously, the app would only work with @Outlook.com or @Hotmail.com accounts which was fine, but if you want to have all of your information within your Office 365 account, you couldn’t do it. In order for this feature to work, you must have To-Do enabled on your account which is something that your administrator will need to do if you can’t sign in with your managed account credentials. Also keep in mind that if you are adding a managed account, permissions to your Contacts will be required for it to work properly.
The ability to integrate with Office 365 accounts was something that the company said would be coming when the announced the original preview of Microsoft To-Do back in April.
Continue reading “Latest Microsoft To-Do Update Improves In-App Searches”