New Email/calendar Service: Microsoft 365 Coming May 2016

Posted November 30th, 2015 at 12:30 pm.

Friends and Colleagues,

I would like to thank all who participated in our decision process for their thoughtful insights. Many students, faculty, and staff gave their time and voices to our focus groups, interviews, open forums, and written feedback opportunities.

We are pleased to announce that Microsoft 365 will be the email and calendar platform replacing Zimbra in May 2016. 365 is a full-featured platform that, after deep analysis, we have determined best meets the needs expressed by the community over the last several months of conversation.

A key factor in this decision has been Google’s relationship with China. Google’s services are often unavailable from within China, and there is no indication that this will change in the near future. While any site can be blocked at any time by any nation for any reason, China’s struggle with Google over Internet censorship is longstanding, and would affect a significant portion of our community. The best possible global experience is a priority for our community, LITS, and the College leadership.

What are some benefits?

  • Robust, reliable email and calendar service with all the features you’re accustomed to in Zimbra
  • An improved, modern interface
  • A significantly larger mail quota (50 GB and growing) and the ability to send and receive larger attachments (150 MB)
  • Excellent mobile experience for Apple iOS, Android, and Windows devices using your device’s native apps or webmail
  • Superior searching and organizing of mail and documents
  • Office 365 Online for collaborative and mobile editing with a seamless transition between Office 365 Online and Office on your computer
  • Online file storage similar to other popular services (such as Dropbox or Google Drive)
  • Current students, faculty, and staff will be able to install Microsoft Office on their personally owned computers and mobile devices for free

What’s next?

  • Winter 2016: Keep an eye out for more information about features of 365 and learning opportunities.
  • Spring 2016: We’ll be announcing exact dates and providing specific documentation, demonstrations, and further training opportunities.
  • Late May 2016: Official launch of Microsoft 365 at Bryn Mawr
  • Summer/Fall 2016: Post-launch training for community members.

We know this is a big change for everyone. LITS is working to make this transition go as smoothly as possible. There will be plenty of chances to ask questions and make sure you are ready to use 365 before the launch and after.

Want to know more?

Read our updated FAQ at http://email.blogs.brynmawr.edu/frequently-asked-questions/. If you have further questions, please contact help@brynmawr.edu.

All best,
Gina Siesing, CIO & Constance A. Jones Director of Libraries

Filed under: Announcements,Email Project,LITS News,New Services by Melissa Cresswell

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