Microsoft’s OneDrive turns 15. The Redmond company is marking the occasion by introducing a new design called OneDrive Home.
The cloud storage service debuted in August 2007, as Windows Live Folders, before being renamed SkyDrive. Microsoft was forced to change the name of the service after a legal dispute with a media network, and OneDrive became the official nickname in 2014.
Microsoft has revamped the OneDrive web interface. The Recently Viewed page is now called OneDrive Home. The old version of the page mentioned the name of the document, the date of its last opening, its last modification, the location (folder) and the size of the document.
The new style has a content feed that lists relevant files, this includes a preview of your documents cover. This is followed by the Recent Files section, which, as the name suggests, shows you the files you’ve accessed on the cloud in reverse chronological order. It is quite similar to the recent Microsoft Office screen. You can display the date/time a document was opened, the owner’s name.
It also shows recent activity such as edits, mentions, and comments made by other authors (collaboration). This can be useful when you return to work and want to keep up to date with the latest updates made by your colleagues. The activity column will also be available under the My Files tab.
Pictures via Microsoft
OneDrive Home has a toolbar at the top of the file list, which you can use to filter files by type such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or PDF. So if you only want to view a DOCX, PPTX, XLSX, or PDF, just tap the corresponding button and OneDrive will hide the rest of the document types.
As part of the improved browsing experience, OneDrive also gets a new side panel on the left, called the Quick Access Bar. You can pin important files there and access them quickly. This appears to be similar to the File Explorer sidebar functionality of the same name.
The new OneDrive Home interface is not yet available to users. Microsoft says the new landing experience will be rolling out in the coming months for business and school users. It seems strange. The company wants users to have a familiar and consistent sharing experience across Office, Sharepoint, and Teams apps. So we can expect these changes to be available for Microsoft 365 with OneDrive.
OneDrive Photo Story
The OneDrive mobile app for Android and iOS has a new feature called Photo Story. It is a preview and allows users to share a private, invitation-only stream of images with family and friends. Your contacts with access to the photos will be able to comment, react and interact with the media. It seems to be similar to Instagram stories.
OneDrive Photo Story is currently only available to users in Australia. It will roll out to users in the US and other regions later this year.
The updated user interface seems to be quite good, although the focus is on collaboration.