Hah! I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time. I’ve been fairly certain for several months, and have in fact suspected it for over a year, but now I’m happy to say I’ve seen the irrefutable proof at least I need.
Sadly, though, I can’t show you the evidence, nor even tell you from where I got it, so consider this as loose a rumor as any.
SharePoint 2013 Shall Be The Name!
In a private forum I frequent, and from whom I’ve learned valuable insights on upcoming features of both Office 2013 and SharePoint 2013, someone posted a screenshot just a couple of days ago. Due to the policy of that forum, I can’t republish that image, and in fact, I have had to acquire permission just to mention them as a source, even though I’m not allowed to let you know which forum this is.
Normally, I don’t cite private sources at all, and I use them only to gain insight into what may come and give me hints as to what I should expect to find elsewhere. It helps with research.
In any case, the screenshot posted reveals details about the new SharePoint Store in SharePoint 2013. And yes, the name SharePoint 2013 is used exclusively, there’s no mention of SharePoint 15 at all.
SharePoint App Functionality
Of further interest is the described installation of a SharePoint app, revealing even more insights into how this feature works.
First of all, the name used in the screenshot is the SharePoint Store, not SharePoint Marketplace, which was and is used in the protocol documentation.
To install an app, you go to the site where you want to install the app. To find an app, you go to the Settings menu (which is a has cogwheel icon much like that used in Windows 8 for settings) and click Add an app. Doing so will give you a search box where you, likely among a wide variety of options, can search for the asset ID of the app you want to install.
Interestingly, the results will default to search among what is described as ‘your apps’. This seems to be what I’ve previously described as a company app store, where farm administrators can acquire licenses for and install (or make available for installation) apps from different sources, including the SharePoint Store.
If, when searching, you can’t find an app in the farm store, SharePoint will automatically search the SharePoint Store. If found, the result will link to the app in the store, where you’ll likely be able to install it or license it if you have the required permissions.
Note: You also need to have site admin permissions to add apps to a site.
Gimme More, Gimme More!
OK, OK, here are a few tidbits that may be of interest.
In the screenshot, to illustrate how the search results looks, there’s a screenshot from the SharePoint 2013 interface for adding apps. Although scaled down, I’ve been able to glean some details of interest.
The interface inside SharePoint for app adding looks very much like the Metro interface in Windows 8. On the left side, there’s the Quick Launch menu as always and with a search box directly over the Quick Launch menu items.
In the top menu, where you’ve had the Personal menu (Welcome User) you see three links which are very interesting, Share, Follow, and what appears to be a Full Screen icon (it resembles the full screen icon of YouTube videos).
The Share and Follow link buttons may be part of new social features in SharePoint, perhaps allowing users to share pages, sites, or items either within the organization or possibly even outside. The Follow may be as simple as a bookmarking feature, but will more likely provide deeper following functionality like feed updates to your MySite or RSS reader.
Finally, I’ve previously mentioned, at least in the SharePoint 2013 Beta series (not sure if I’ve blogged it) that there is a new concept in SharePoint 2013 called Communities which seem to at least be used extensively in SharePoint Education Services. In the top navigation bar of the screenshot, there is a link called Communities (next to MySite) so it’s likely that communities will be used outside SharePoint education as well.
Beyond this, there are few details in the SharePoint screenshot, but I noticed that there is no Ribbon in the screenshot, nor any indication that there is one to open. This may be just a feature of the Add an App page or because the page is shown using the full screen feature, but regardless, I have no indication that the Ribbon will be gone from other pages.
Well, we’re just days away from the first beta so I hope you’ll enjoy this little preview, and as always, remember that everything is highly speculative, and so on.
If you’d like to get first insights into SharePoint 2013 once the beta comes out, I’ve soft-launched my new USP Journal series titled Introducing SharePoint 2013 and the first issue comes out as soon as SharePoint 2013 Beta does. You can grab a subscription from the Introducing SharePoint 2013 page for $14.95 and as always with my series, that includes all the issues (even back issues) and the first issue of USP Journal Volume 3 (which will be a compilation of the series).
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