A few months ago we announced the Office 365 Video service, which is an internal video publishing service on Office 365, and we recently confirmed that it is now rolling out to all of our Office 365 Enterprise customers (that automatically includes Office 365 Education services, with plan E1 and E3). What the service allows you to do is create a video portal within your Office 365 Education service, and create channels (eg for specific curriculum subjects or special interest groups) for users to watch.
The Office 365 Video service uses a group of cloud services in Azure Media Services, to make it easier for your users to publish their videos in easily accessible formats, so that they can watch on a PC, Mac, tablet or phone. We’ve also announced an Office 365 Video for iPhone app, so that staff or students can record and watch videos on their iPhone. And because the service runs on top of Office 365 and Azure cloud services, it means that the security that applies to all of your other information also applies to the videos – for example, the videos are stored and transmitted with secure encryption, to keep them private.
It’s also running as a service within your Office 365 setup, so there are no additional charges for the service (for example, the media transcoding is included within the Office 365 Video service, and the video storage uses your existing SharePoint team allocation in Office 365)
There are two key ways that you could use this service in a school, TAFE or university:
- Simply start to publish videos using the standard Office 365 Video services and mobile apps, and start to create channels for your different content. Your teaching staff could also upload recordings of lessons, presentations, screen recordings etc directly from Office Mix into your Office 365 Video portal. The process is easy for users – they can just drag and drop an existing video onto the portal (recorded in heaps of formats), and it handles all of the transcoding needed to make the video available on different devices. And you can setup multiple channels, and select different users as admins for the channels.
- You could use develop a customised service for your users using the developer APIs available for Office 365 Video. For example, if you wanted to use this to deliver a lecture capture and streaming service, a developer can build a service to upload from your lecture capture hardware into your Office 365 Video portal and publish automatically in the correct channels. All the documentation for the Office 365 Video APIs are previewed here.
I’d also recommend taking a look at the Office 365 Video Uservoice site – this is where the team are collecting feedback and requests for future features – so if there’s something you’d like to see added to the service, this is where you can go and vote for it, or suggest it!