Microsoft has today announced a new capability for Outlook that brings a family calendar to the service. The “new” shared calendars are part of the Microsoft Family platform. Microsoft says the feature is now available across Windows 10, iOS, Android, and other platforms.
Ok, here's the important thing of this update … it means little. It is simply adding a family tag to let families know they can share calendars across devices. If you are mother trying to organize your kids, I can certainly see how this is a good thing.
However, the ability to share calendars in Outlook is not new at all. Indeed, it has been available for years. Either way, Microsoft is announcing it as something worth exploring for families who may not have been familiar with the feature.
The Microsoft Family calendar for Outlook works like any other shared calendar on the service. This means any included member can add events to the calendar and they will be displayed on all relevant device.
In an email to Mspoweruser, Microsoft presented the feature as new:
“As part of your Microsoft family benefits, we've created a new Family calendar for you and your family members. With the shared Family calendar, any member of your family can see and schedule events or appointments.
No matter what device or OS you use, you can access the family calendar by signing in to Outlook.com with your Microsoft account. Everyone in your family already has access to your family calendar, so start simplifying your family's schedules now!”
Outlook users with a Microsoft Account can add members to their Family and customize the calendar settings. This includes restrictions and limits.
There is no specific update needed to get this feature. Again, this show that Microsoft is merely relabelling an existing ability.
Groups in Outlook
Earlier in the week, Microsoft had a major announcement for Outlook across platforms. Groups has been available for Office 365 Business users for some time, and is now on Android, Mac, and iOS.
This feature allows users to take actions more easily and manage group interactions. Events and views can be shared across a group, while details can be checked quickly.