Microsoft launches Loop – a canvas for working together

Microsoft Loop had already announced 2021. Now the app is actually available. It should represent a kind of canvas that groups can work on together, but of course you can also do it alone. Projects are structured hierarchically. There are parent folders and a classic tree structure. However, almost all other Microsoft services can be integrated. Microsoft speaks of portable components that can be synchronized across applications. Loop can primarily be compared to Notion.

Loop is roughly divided into three areas. The components are the smallest units of productivity, such as lists, spreadsheets, notes, tasks, and more. They can be integrated into the hierarchy on the canvas, but always remain in sync with the place of origin – for example the original table in Excel. Microsoft had shown a new voting table when the announcement was made, and a status tracker should also be included. Third-party providers are also given the opportunity to develop applications that can be integrated with Loop. Microsoft promised detailed information on this for the upcoming developer conference in 2021 – but the product didn’t even exist then.

Loop pages are the drawing areas where all the information and ideas are laid out. Microsoft is not stingy with color and animations in the blog post. Emojis are available as commenting reactions, small scale per sentence, large scale for high five. The loop workspaces should provide the necessary overview. They are, so to speak, the hierarchy of a project in which all components and pages are located. Teams can work on the tasks simultaneously or asynchronously. Everyone should be able to see what their colleagues are currently working on and always be able to see the latest status.

(Image: Microsoft blog post)

Microsoft Loop is available free of charge for the first users to test. For use within the Microsoft 365 environment, the blog continues: “In the coming months we will keep you informed about the availability of the Microsoft Loop app.” There are already instructions on how administrators can activate the public preview.

Behind Loop is the Fluid Framework, which Microsoft also presented in 2019. In 2021 it was said: Fluid components previously enabled real-time changes and transfers in teams and office apps, now they come in teams meetings, OneNote, Outlook and Whiteboard. The Fluid Framework is open source and can be used accordingly by developers.


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