Microsoft announced a number of updates to its suite of Office apps for iOS today, better integrating them into Apple’s ecosystem. Arguably the most anticipated update is OneDrive’s new integration with the iOS Files app and support for drag-and-drop gestures on iPhones and iPads.
OneDrive now natively supports the Files app on iOS, letting users upload, share, and save content to OneDrive or SharePoint from apps that support the Files app, which Apple debuted with iOS 11. Users can tag OneDrive or SharePoint documents in the Files app to make them easier to find as well. Microsoft also redesigned the OneDrive app with a new list view and support for more than 130 file types for previews, letting users open, edit, and share Photoshop and other file types from directly within the app.
Drag-and-drop is a popular new feature of iOS 11 and makes working with documents—particularly on iPad—much easier, and now the OneDrive and Office apps for iOS support drag-and-drop. Users can move files into various apps more easily by dragging and dropping them into the desired program, which will be especially useful while in Split View on iPad. The new support lets customers move files in between OneDrive and Office apps as well as Microsoft’s apps and other sources, such as Messages.
Microsoft also added co-authoring to Word, PowerPoint, and Excel for iOS, allowing members of the same team or group to edit the same document together in real time. Those working in the document will see who else is also editing the same document and their changes. Collaboration tools have slowly rolled out across Office apps on various platforms, with Office for Mac updatingearlier this month with real-time collaboration features and automatic cloud saving. Compared to competing programs like Google Drive, it has taken Microsoft much longer to introduce collaboration features to all of its apps across all supported platforms.
The updated apps news comes on the heels of a rumor that Microsoft will preview its Edge browser on iPad sometime next month. Edge for Android and iOS came out last year after a few months of testing, but the iOS app wasn’t optimized for iPhone X or iPad. It appears Microsoft may soon come out with an iPad version of its Web browser, but there’s no official timeline for its release.