SharePoint is one of Microsoft’s communication and collaboration platforms for business. Offered in both online and on-premises (for now at least) deployments, new changes have just been announced to kill the Newsfeed.
Microsoft’s SharePoint enables sites to add components or modules to pages. One of these items, present in almost every Team site, was Newsfeed. Think of this as Facebook’s wall, but for your department or team. It was a timeline of updates that could include photos or links, alongside text posts that actually worked really well to communicate among the team or project group, or to get new employees up to speed quickly.
There’s a technique for a business to aggregate news from multiple sites into a Newsfeed for a department or a an entire organization and Microsoft is suggesting (pushing) SharePoint Online users to the more modern Communication Sites or Yammer (don’t do this). Yammer is likely not long for this world as they push Teams to be the communication platform of choice, also increasingly integrating Skype for Business functionality.
The native SharePoint social features in SharePoint Online were designed to let people work together in ways that are most effective for them through providing great collaboration tools that anyone can use to share ideas, find people and expertise, and location business information.
Over the course of the past 18 months we’ve introduced new capabilities designed to take advantage of the latest innovations across intelligence, mobile and more to deliver solutions that allow people to communicate more effectively from Office 365 Groups to Team News, Communication Sites, and Yammer.
SharePoint Online is ending support for the Newsfeed and will turn this to read-only in June this year, and will discontinue it for new customers. This is a fairly aggressive timeline, particularly for business who have thousands of sites and subsites in their SharePoint instance. This is a push from Microsoft for business to use one of their other services like Office 365 Groups, Teams, or Yammer.
One positive is that if you run SharePoint 2016 on your own servers, this change won’t impact you. The downside is that Microsoft often roll new features to SharePoint Online first and many months or even years before they arrive in the on-prem product.
More information at Microsoft.