Today (March 3rd 2014), at the SharePoint Conference (VEGAS, U.S.), along with the Office team, we are a releasing a number of significant updates for developers building apps for SharePoint and Office 365.

Here’s an updated summary that I just created:

What are Apps for Office and SharePoint? (Office 365 apps)

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Apps for Office and SharePoint are based on a unique application model which shares a common approach for extending Office and SharePoint. It brings the value of web apps we know on devices to the productivity applications you use on a daily basis.

This apps model is built on web technologies like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, jQuery, REST, OData, and OAuth. If you’re a web developer, you can use your existing skills to build apps and take advantage of familiar tools, languages, and hosting services. You can deploy, update and maintain your apps faster in the cloud and finally publish and sell your apps on the Office Store, or distribute IT-approved apps within your organizations by using a corporate App catalog (on-premises).

Apps for Office 2013

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Apps for SharePoint 2013

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What is Office 365 API? (Preview)

Microsoft is thrilled to announce the new Office 365 API which leverages the broadest, most integrated set of productivity services in the industry across mail, collaboration, people and communication services that SMB and enterprise customers use. Now we are opening up the Office 365 platform for developers to build compelling apps which can connect to the key services and data within Office.

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Office 365 API

As we are using open web standards it’s possible to connect to the continually evolving API’s for Office and combine with other Web Services to develop rich and contextual apps for all platforms. With millions of customers on Office 365 commercial and consumer services, there are petabytes of content created in Office 365 every month. By securely unlocking this data to developers through open standards we’ve made Office 365 a compelling development platform.

Developer Tools: The power of choice!

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Development for Office and SharePoint is completely flexible. Depending on your specific context and needs for your solution, you will be able to choose the tools that better fit to your needs.

Leverage the full power of Visual Studio to develop Apps for Office & SharePoint with Office Developer Tools or the Visual Studio Office 365 Cloud Business Apps template (LightSwitch Apps for SharePoint) for the easiest way to create data-driven apps for SharePoint.

Use “Napa” to get started with Office and SharePoint development without having to install anything onto your development machine. As your application matures or you simply want to use the full power of Visual Studio, “Napa” provides a seamless switch to Visual Studio.

Finally, use the Office 365 API Tools for Visual Studio 2013 – Preview to develop solutions consuming the Office 365 API.

 

Microsoft Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2013 – March 2014 Update

When installing these Developer Tools, it extends Visual Studio 2013 providing additional updated VS project templates and wizards, including Office 365 Cloud Business Applications and other traditional project templates.

Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2013 allows you to create rich, immersive apps for Office and SharePoint, using the premiere tool for professional developers, Visual Studio 2013. These tools require Visual Studio 2013 Ultimate, Premium, or Professional.

Visual Studio projects for Office and SharePoint

The Office developer tools for Visual Studio 2013 allow you to create the following types of apps and solutions:

Apps for SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online in Office 365

• SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint 2010 farm / sandboxed solutions

• Apps for Office 2013 and Office Web App in Office 365 (Task pane apps for Excel, Word, PowerPoint and Project | Content apps for Excel | Mail apps for Exchange Online and on-premises)

• Office 2013 add-ins for Excel, InfoPath, Outlook, PowerPoint, Project, Visio and Word.

These tools offer new features to Visual Studio 2013, like designers, and templates to support and facilitate the development of apps for Office and SharePoint. You can create, edit, build, debug, package and publish apps for Office and SharePoint for all of the hosting models and app types.

Additionally, with no local SharePoint installation in your development machine, you can use Visual Studio to develop apps for SharePoint against a remote server running SharePoint.

As part of the March 2014 Update, you are able now to:

Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2013

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• Create PowerPoint Content Apps for Office 2013 SP1/Office Web Apps

• Create Compose Mail Apps for Exchange Online & On-Premises

• Debug Apps for Office running in Office Web Apps (IE & Google Chrome)

• Target SharePoint 2013 SP1 and new APIs in SharePoint Online

Office 365 Cloud Business Apps

By using the Cloud Business App (CBA) template in Visual Studio, you can quickly and easily create line-of-business apps that are hosted on SharePoint for Office 365 and based on Visual Studio LightSwitch technologies. Users can download and run cloud business apps on desktop computers and most mobile devices.

CBA with HTML5 and SharePoint support is the easiest way to create modern line of business applications for the enterprise. Publishing business applications to SharePoint 2013 gives users a central place to manage application administration and access within the enterprise, as well as the ability to build rich applications that can interact with SharePoint content and participate in business processes.

CBA: The easiest way to build data-driven Apps for SharePoint

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As part of the March 2014 Update, you are able now to:

• Attach to Host Web SharePoint Document Libraries as First Class Data Sources in CBA

• Attach to SAP resources as First Class Data Sources in CBA

• Rapidly filter the data in the Business App

“Napa”

“Napa” is a free app for SharePoint that provides a lightweight, browser-based for developers who are not initially used to Visual Studio, and is the fastest way to get started with Office and SharePoint development without having to install anything onto your machine. “Napa” is part of the Office 365 Developer Site, which is available at http://dev.office.com/.

“Napa” allows you to launch your browser and start coding your apps for Office and SharePoint and run them in the Office 365 Developer Site, the Office Web Apps or the Office rich client applications.

As your application matures and you need more advanced tools, click the “Open in Visual Studio” button to get the latest Office Developer Tools, open a copy of that project in Visual Studio and continue developing there.

Downloads

You will be able to try/download these tools from the following pages:

Microsoft Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2013 – March 2014 Update

Install it through ‘Web Platform Installer’ available at http://aka.ms/officedevtoolsforvs2013

Microsoft Office 365 API Tools for Visual Studio 2013 – Preview

Install it through ‘Web Platform Installer’ available at http://aka.ms/office365apitoolspreview

Napa” - http://dev.office.com/

“Napa”: Coding in the browser!

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Other blogs and new resources:

Office dev center home page

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/office/aa905340

Apps for SharePoint

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/office/dn448479

SharePoint for developers

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/office/dn448478

Showcase: Contoso catalog app

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/office/dn594488

Showcase: Contoso event coordinator app

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/office/dn594489

Showcase: Contoso incubation search app

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/office/dn594490

Developer Training - update

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/office/dn448488