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Office Add-ins community call – July 10, 2019

The Office Add-ins community call is our monthly event for developers to connect in real-time with the folks who are building the Office Add-ins platform and JavaScript APIs. During this call, we share updates about new Office JavaScript APIs and provide tips about useful tools, samples, and resources for developing Office Add-ins.

July’s call, hosted by Kim Brandl and Doug Mahugh, featured the following presenters and topics:

  • Doug Mahugh, Senior Dev Writer, presented an overview of the Office Add-ins
  • Sohail Zafar, Senior Program Manager, covered what’s new in the Outlook JavaScript APIs.
  • Yu Kaijun, Senior Program Manager, and Ruoying Liang, Senior Program Manager, talked about what’s new in the Excel JavaScript APIs.
  • Anand Menon, Principal Program Manager Lead, presented about Microsoft 365 App Certification.
  • Daniel Fylstra, President @ Frontline Systems Inc., presented about the Analytic Solver add-in for Excel, a complex and powerful analytics modeling tool that they’ve ported from a COM add-in to a JavaScript add-in.

Watch the call here.

View the presentation here.

The next Office Add-ins community call is on Wednesday, August 14, 2019 at 8:00AM PST. You can download a recurring calendar invite at https://aka.ms/officeaddinscommunitycall.

Engage with us

Are you interested in delivering a presentation during an upcoming Office Add-ins community call? Or would you be willing to provide feedback aimed at helping to improve the Office Add-ins documentation? If you answered yes to either (or both!) of these questions, please connect with us by completing this short survey form.

Q&A

We welcome you to submit questions and topic suggestions in advance of each call by using our short survey form. Here’s the Q&A for questions that were submitted for July’s call:

Is there some kind of session schedule for this call? I’m interested in information related to Word add-ins.

We announce the agenda in advance of each call via @OfficeDev on Twitter.

How can I get a copy of the PowerPoint deck that was presented during this call?

Within the next few days, we’ll be publishing a blog post to the OfficeDev blog that contains a recap of the call and includes both the recording of the call and the PowerPoint deck that was presented during the call.

Is the material presented about ‘What’s new with the Outlook JavaScript APIs’ available to share with my internal team?

There will be a blog post from the Outlook team when the new APIs are in production, and for now you can find documentation for them in the preview documentation.

What is the URL for App Certification?

Information about Microsoft Teams app certifications is available here: https://aka.ms/appcertification.

Is the App Certification process that was described during today’s call available for Microsoft Teams only? If yes, the when will it be available for other apps?

The App Certification process described today is currently available only for Microsoft Teams apps. We’re working on extending this certification process to other types of Microsoft 365 (M365) apps (including Office Add-ins), and hope to have something available by 2 quarters from now.

What is “M365”?

M365 is short for “Microsoft 365” — a suite of products that includes (amongst other things) Office 365. For more information, see: https://www.microsoft.com/microsoft-365.

Is the NuGet package ‘Microsoft.Office.js’ being maintained and updated with the latest changes?

Yes, the Microsoft.Office.js is being maintained. It’s updated with each “major” API release (such as ExcelApi 1.9, for example), but not with “minor” API additions. Please note that most older versions of the package have recently been removed, and soon we’ll start showing only the latest version of the package (to prevent developers from downloading older versions and ensure they always get the latest and greatest).

Where should I start if I want to use an add-in to update quarterly numbers automatically in PowerPoint?

PowerPoint JavaScript APIs are currently fairly limited, as the team’s mainly been focused on APIs for Excel and Outlook recently. The PowerPoint add-ins docs contain information about what you can achieve in PowerPoint with JavaScript APIs, and the PowerPoint add-ins tutorial provides hands-on experience with building a PowerPoint add-in that uses the JavaScript APIs.

Where should I start to learn about developing an Office Add-in for Word?

The Office Add-ins documentation contains the information you’ll need to learn about building Office Add-ins for Word. A good starting point would be to complete the Word add-in quick start to build your first Word add-in, followed by the Word add-in tutorial to learn more about using Word JavaScript APIs, then explore the docs to learn more about building Word add-ins.

Can we migrate our existing COM add-in (built using Add-in Express) to an Office.js Add-in?

It’s definitely feasible to build an Office JS version of a COM add-in, but doing so will require that you create the Office JS add-in from scratch (i.e., there’s no automated conversion process whereby you can ‘convert’ a COM add-in to an Office Add-in). The first step would be to determine whether all functionality in your add-in can be implemented using currently-available Office JS APIs. The Office Add-ins documentation contains info about Office JS APIs, along with lots of other info that’ll be useful as you build your Office Add-in.

Can we publish our COM Add-in to Microsoft AppSource?

No; it’s not possible to publish a COM Add-in to Microsoft AppSource.

Resources

From July’s call

Office Add-ins community call

Office Add-ins feedback

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