Microsoft talks more about SkyDrive's new features

A few weeks ago, Microsoft released a number of new features for its cloud-based Skydrive service, including adding more options for sharing files and adding better HTML5-based features. Today, the official Windows Live blog site has posted up some more information about how Microsoft developed Skydrive's new app-centric sharing for Office documents and photos.

Microsoft's Tony East writes on the blog site that in the past Skydrive was too difficult to use. In the old version you had to create folders in the root of your SkyDrive and later give specific people permission to view that folder. Those people also had to know your's specific Windows Live ID. In the new version, East writes that it is a much simpler experience. He states:

Let’s say you’re using the Word Web App to write a blog post (!) and you want to send it out to the folks who need to review it. Instead of having to leave the context of Word, you can just click the File menu and choose “Share.” This brings up the—by now familiar—SkyDrive sharing dialog. Just choose the people you want to share with and get back to writing that blog post. Now that’s simple, app-centric sharing!

Users can also do the same with sharing photos and photo albums in Skydrive, East writes, "If I’m browsing my albums and see one I want to share, in this case some shots I took with my new camera, I can use the new right-click menu on the album cover and share the entire album (folder) from there."

Sharing files with friends is now easier as Skydrive allows users to link to their friends on Facebook, LinkedIn, Gmail, and more. East writes that the new version of Skydrive allows for quick and easy sharing of folders and files with people on your various social networks. As he writes: "Want to share that photo album? Have a Word document with a great recipe you want to share? Need your friends to take a look at your resume on LinkedIn? Now you can."

And what about that Windows Live ID requirement? East says, "Now, our links sent in email and shared on social networks contain a token to let the recipient view the document, so that it works no matter which email address I send it to, even if the recipient doesn’t have a Windows Live ID."

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