Microsoft launches Stream, its Office 365 business video service

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Microsoft is making generally available in most countries around the world as of June 20 its new video service for business users.

Microsoft introduced the public preview of that service, known as Microsoft Stream, last July.

Microsoft Stream ultimately is meant to replace the existing Office 365 Video service. Stream is for uploading, sharing, managing, and viewing corporate videos that can be used for education, training, and cross-company information sharing.

Like Office 365 Video, Stream is built on top of the Azure Media Services platform. Stream is designed to integrate with SharePoint, Teams, Yammer, and Office 365 Groups. Stream uses Azure Active Directory for authenticated access and provides encryption.

Stream provides speech-to-text transcribed audio that’s searchable; face detection in videos; and linked timecodes. Microsoft also revamped the Stream user interface and added more granular management controls.

The replacement of Office 365 Video by Microsoft Stream won’t happen immediately; it will be a phased migration, according to Microsoft, and Office 365 Video will continue to be supported and maintained until all customers are migrated. The migration will commence in the second half of calendar 2017, according to Microsoft’s Stream migration page.

There are still some features in Office 365 Video that are not available yet in Stream, including the integration with Delve, SharePoint Enterprise Search, SharePoint Home, and SharePoint mobile apps; the ability to see video view statistics; and support for REST programming interfaces. Public anonymous access to videos and live streaming also are not yet there, Microsoft officials acknowledged in a June 20 blog post.

Stream also is not yet available in Australia, Canada, China, Germany, India, the UK, and the US Government Community Cloud. The detailed Microsoft Stream feature release dates and planned geographic rollout plans are available here.

Microsoft Stream is available to those with Office 365 Education, Education Plus, Enterprise K1, Enterprise K2, Enterprise E1, Enterprise E3, and Enterprise E5 plans. Office 365 business users can access Stream from the Office app launcher or sign in from the Microsoft Stream website. Those without Office 365 can use Stream as a standalone service or test drive Stream as a free trial.

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