Both Office 2013 Clients and as well as the Office 365 products now have a cool feature called “Apps for Office”. It is best to see what this is via an example.
For example lets take the case of an e-mail.
Depending on the content of the mail, say if you received an e-mail with an address in it, then when you open the mail in Outlook 2013(shown below), OR Office 365 Web Client it auto-detects the pattern and provides the relevant application to you. In this case “Bing Maps”.
If you click on the Bing Maps, the following happens: The app bar expands and says “We think we’ve found an address”.
And then it uses the Bing API to show where exactly the address is.
Once in the embedded Bing Maps Control, you can do all of the usual things you do with the Maps control, like zoom, pan, directions etc.,. This is pretty cool, as depending on the content message, the type of app that is needed to open it, is auto-detected and presented to the user, so that he/she does not have to leave the app (in this case outlook), but see the context right within Outlook.
This is the link to the store for Apps for Office, which is growing ever so quickly.
http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/store/apps-for-outlook-FX102804983.aspx?app=outlook%2Eexe . As you can see there are apps for popular services such as Twitter and LinkedIn
Now the implications are more than meets the eye:
- You can write your own Office apps and publish it. So other people can download and use it. Of course it could be free or paid apps.
- Exchange administrators can control the type of applications that show up for all of the Exchange clients, so that in a corporate set up, only authorized applications show up, and NOT any random application which can steal your data.