Details about next Microsoft SharePoint leaked

Microsoft is gearing up for a pretty busy year, with a number of major new software projects expected before the end of 2012. That includes Windows 8, Windows Server 8, Office 15 and more. Indeed, some more screenshots of Office 15 were leaked on the internet earlier today.

Now ZDNet reports that it has received some information from an unnamed source about the next version of Microsoft SharePoint, the company's web content management and technology software tool set. The article says that while internally the next version is known as SharePoint 15, the final version of the tools will likely get the title SharePoint 2013 when it is actually launched.

Some of the new features in the next SharePoint and SharePoint Online include allowing users to view their business intelligence content on Apple's iPad devices, in yet another sign that Microsoft is offering its software and services on non-Microsoft platforms.

The next SharePoint is also supposed to have some kind of Metro-style interface like Windows Phone and Windows 8. Tiles will show off more information when a user puts their mouse cursor over the tiles.

Also, Microsoft's Office Web Apps will no longer run from the SharePoint server farm in the new release but instead will be run from a new Office Web Apps Server system.

The next version of SharePoint is expected to launch at the same time as Office 15 and the next major version of Office 365, all of which should be available by the end of 2012, alongside the launch of Windows 8.

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Based on the released SDK it appears that SP15 works in two modes, compatibility or "15". One can hope that we are looking at MVC 3.0 with HTML5 for the "15" mode.

I hope they improve the backup functionality. Doing an all or one approach isn't a very good out of the box practice esp. with a complex product such as SP. That's why we are looking at Kroll Ontrack's PowerControls, AvePoint and Idera right now.

A new server system for Office Web Apps? I wouldn't have thought so. Perhaps more like that it'll be provided a SharePoint Service Application and therefore can be moved to its own application server in the same way the SP currently lets you move indexing, Excel Services etc to dedicated application servers rather than running them on the front-ends.

Work to support iPad viewing of BI features has already started with the recent cumulative update. SharePoint "15" may now be looking to replace some of the Silverlight based components with HTML 5 (e.g. PowerPivot gallery). It'll still fall some way short of the recent Power View feature that absolutely requires Silverlight 5.