Microsoft's Visio software is one of the best diagramming tools in the market, but it's been limited in its reach. Previously, Users could only view diagrams on the desktop, meaning it was difficult to share with others.
Today the Redmond giant has fixed this issue, with the release of Visio Viewer for iPad and the web. Users can now explore and share diagrams with colleagues without access to the full desktop client.
Furthermore, an iPhone version will be with us “in the coming months.” There's no Android or Windows Mobile version yet, but Microsoft has confirmed plans for a future release. In the meantime, you should be able to use the web version on popular mobile browsers.
Visio for iPad Features
Though you still can't create diagrams on iPad, this version does have features that will make the experience better. According to Microsoft, the whole experience has been optimized for Retina displays.
This means all of the tiny details are easily viewable, with the ability to zoom into complex structures, as well as hide any layers that are in the way. Furthermore, a “find” pane lets you see all the repetitions of certain names, text, and data, saving a lot of scrolling around.
This functionality combines with the web preview to create a much more accessible Visio experience:
“Visio Online Preview amplifies the power of visual communication by helping teams glean real-time information from diagrams with just a browser—turning your data-linked diagrams into an operational dashboard that more employees can access,” says the Visio team.
Naturally, you'll need a Visio subscription to access all of this content. To use the web version, you first have to upload a .vsdx file to the cloud. Clicking on the name in OneDrive for Business or SharePoint Online will then bring you to Visio web preview.
iPad users can simply download the latest version of Visio from the App Store. Though these new apps are a far cry from the full experience, it's a good starting point. No doubt Microsoft will bring editing tools in the future, alongside versions for other platforms.