Join Steve Goodman & Rich Dean for this week’s Practical 365 podcast, where on the show we talk about Microsoft 365 Copilot GA, success at The Experts Conference: What we heard, Microsoft Ignite Registration Opened & Sold Out, and Exchange Web Services will be retiring soon.
Success at The Experts Conference: What We Heard
Rich talks about what he heard at TEC (The Experts Conference), including how useful The Experts Bar was; Tony and Greg’s debate session, Mary Jo Foley’s session, and much more; and how you can satisfy any lingering FOMO by signing up to the TEC Talks or by following Practical 365 for “Heard at TEC” posts:
Microsoft 365 Copilot GA, Plus Lots More:
The GA date for Microsoft 365 Copilot was announced – November 1st; but as that is for EA (Enterprise Agreement) customers, you might not be getting your hands on the tech on that day. We think Microsoft might have the timing just about right so that at Ignite, customers begin to get their first glance (outside of private preview/EAP). And with the GA date, Microsoft also renamed/announced Microsoft 365 Chat, formerly known as the “business chat” app in Teams.
That is not all – although Microsoft 365 Copilot isn’t even out yet, it’s getting more features, including Microsoft 365 Copilot in Stream. That’s not an extra license, nor is it available without the add-ons; so we’d assume if they are able to add features this close to GA then they must be pretty confident that the product will deliver on all of its promises in the original announcements… right?
Microsoft Ignite Registration Opened & Sold Out
Will you have FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) if you Can’t go to Microsoft Ignite – once again in Seattle, up the road from Microsoft HQ? The big conference of the year for Microsoft-focused IT pros feels like a shadow of its former self and its TechEd predecessor. Although this smaller in-person conference is sold out, former conferences used to attract upwards of 20K+ attendees eager to learn and network – and spawned the popular Ignite the Tour conferences.
We’ve still yet to make out all the details, as the featured speaker list is primarily Microsoft leadership, who often will always speak on the first day of the conference while everyone attends the big announcements. We do hope that, given it’s a paid conference, Microsoft makes sure it is worth it for those paying.
We’ll be watching, but Ignite as a primarily remote conference feels a little like the old days of TechEd on the years you didn’t attend & had to watch the session recordings. It’s fine – but it’s not the same as being there.
Exchange Web Services will be Retired
In not altogether surprising developments, Microsoft announced that Exchange Web Services will be retired from Exchange Online. In less than three years time – October 1st, 2026, EWS will start blocking requests from non-Microsoft apps.
This means extra work for migration vendors, or their solutions will stop working – and many apps that work against both on-premises & Exchange Online will need more work to be updated to use the Graph API & vendors may well need to continue to support both that and EWS for their on-premises customers.
For IT departments we fear this will cause a lot of pain – including working with vendors (who you might have already had to get working with modern auth) and for your internal applications. We know EWS is an “old” protocol and someone heavyweight with its “Web 2.0” eta XML requests, but it has been a solid, well-supported technology. Microsoft has a lot of work to do in the much shorter term to ensure that the Graph API is feature-complete so that orgs and vendors can use the remaining time to update their apps. For example. the Graph API still has no access to Archive mailboxes and Public Folders amongst other gaps.
Join us in two weeks’ time for the next episode, where we’ll be joined by a special guest from Microsoft.