Microsoft bought Sunrise in February (see Microsoft reported to acquire calendar app Sunrise), so it’s no surprise that they have been working on an integration with Office 365 and Outlook.com. Here’s the web interface showing the new integrations, now at the top of the list:
I don’t have an active Office 365 account (something I let lapse when the old Gigaom shut down in March), so I couldn’t test it out, and apparently the Outlook.com integration is not 100% there, yet.
I tacked on the Meet scheduling tool now integrated into Sunrise, since it was released in May, prior to the Gigaom Research relaunch. Meet is a capability designed to deal with the headaches involved in scheduling meetings.
On the web version there is a ‘Meet’ button, and when you click you can then select a collection of possible times from your calendar. Options exist for various lengths for the meeting (30 minutes, and hour, etc.) and the location or medium for the meeting. Once your done making the list you hit a check mark, and a URL is placed in your clip buffer, so you can paste into an email or chat.
The approach on iOS and Android is actually slicker. New versions of the app include a keyboard, which — once configured — can be popped up inside any app, and which displays your calendar in context. Here’s my Gmail, for example:
Here, you see I’ve selected two times for a possible meeting. Once I hit the checkmark, it is pasted into the text of the mail:
This is a great design, and avoids having to switch back and forth between apps. Brilliant.
The only limitation is that this approach is currently limited to one-on-one meetings, and doesn’t tackle the exponential complexities of coordinating with many meeting participants, but I bet that the Sunrise folks are going to iron that out soon. Maybe I’ll drop my Amy Ingram virtual assistant (see x.ai is the best scheduling tool — er, assistant? — ever) when they release that!