After months of telling you that Delve is something you need, Microsoft is finally ready to show Office 365 subscribers. Similar to Google Now, Delve promises to find information for subscribers to Office 365 Business Essentials and Business Premium plans, as well as the Office 365 Small Business, Small Business Premium, and Midsize Business. Delve is meant to give you the information you need before you have to go looking for it.
Delve is built upon “Office Graph,” the machine learning technology that Microsoft introduced in March.
“Delve displays information that is most relevant for each person based on the work they are doing and the people with whom they are engaging,” Julia White, the general manager of Office, said in a blog post. “With Delve, information finds you versus you having to find information.”
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So, not dissimilar to what Cortana is already doing for Windows phone users.
Presently, Delve is a bit limited as it is primarily pulling data from Microsoft applications like OneDrive for Business (the cloud storage for Office 365 documents), SharePoint Online, and Yammer. In order to be truly effective, it will need to support third-part apps as well. Apps like Box, Dropbox, chat rooms like Slack andamong others.
Card-based like Google Now
Delve is presented like Google Now, in a card-based interface with each card showing snippets of information that led it(?, I mean I know Siri’s female) to determine that the card was deemed relevant. White explains that she wants Delve to help users “cut through the noise” at work just as Facebook and Twitter do in our personal lives.
Once prompted by Delve, users are able to view and search the pertinent documents, spreadsheets, and other resources for which they have access. So instead of having to dig scour your folders or email inbox, users are given quick access to these documents and the ability to act on the card if relevant.
Whether or not it’s something you need you’ll have to decide for yourself but since it’s free you might as well give it a chance as it rolls-out through early 2015.