Microsoft SharePoint 2013, available as an on-premise solution or as a hosted solution as part of Office 365, provides comprehensive collaboration capabilities for your business. With SharePoint 2013 you can empower your employees to access resources and share their knowledge, whatever their location and device. It provides a unified infrastructure and close interoperability with the Office suite, a powerful platform for developers to build upon, flexible deployment options, comprehensive search capabilities and much more. SharePoint can either be used internally as an Intranet to facilitate internal communication and content management or as Internet facing website to allow easy sharing of content to external users. Whatever your needs, there is an edition of SharePoint to meet your requirements.
New capabilities in SharePoint 2013
Branding and web content management
The web content management improvements in SharePoint 2013 simplify how you design publishing sites, and enhance the authoring and publishing processes of your organisation. It also contains new features that use enterprise search to surface dynamic web content on publishing sites.
Business connectivity services
Get numerous improvements to the way SharePoint 2013 and Office 2013 access external data. These improvements include support for apps in SharePoint, external list improvements to provide functional parity with other SharePoint lists and support for OData Business Data Connectivity (BDC) connections.
Create powerful data mash-ups using PowerPivot, with the ability to process billions of rows, create data models and facilitate sharing and collaboration with Excel Services. Power View provides intuitive ad-hoc reporting. With PerformancePoint Services and Dashboard Designer, along with Visio Services, create sophisticated dashboards capable of integrating reports and metrics from multiple data sources that are customisable for your audience.
Updates to the eDiscovery technologies include the ability to perform eDiscovery queries across multiple SharePoint farms and Exchange servers, to preserve and export discovered content, to preserve content in-place from Exchange mailboxes and SharePoint sites while allowing users to continue working with content and support for search and export from file shares.
Authentication enhancements in SharePoint 2013 ease the process of using claims-based authentication. Additionally, support for server-to-server authentication and app authentication by utilising and extending the Open Authorization 2.0 (OAuth 2.0) web authorisation protocol enables new scenarios and functionality for Exchange Server 2013, Lync Server 2013 and apps in the SharePoint Store or App Catalog.
SharePoint Server 2013 offers new, optimised viewing experiences across different mobile platforms. Additionally, there are several features that are available to help improve both worker productivity and usability on the device.
Records management and compliance
The records management and compliance features in SharePoint 2013 provide improved ways to help you protect your business. The records archive and in-place record retention from earlier versions of SharePoint Server are still supported, and SharePoint 2013 introduces retention policies that can be applied at the site level.
Enterprise search in SharePoint Server 2013 includes many of the capabilities of SharePoint Server 2010 and provides numerous improvements, such as in query processing and targeting of search results. Administrators can configure search to enable users to find relevant information more quickly and easily than ever before.
The introduction of Community Sites offers a forum experience to categorise discussions around subject areas, and to connect users who have knowledge or seek knowledge about subject areas. Additionally, the new Community Portal enables a search-driven result page of communities for users to discover and explore from a link on their My Sites. Improvements to My Sites offer a more intuitive workflow for users to develop their personal profiles, store content, and keep up-to-date with activities of interest through the use of the new microblog and feeds experience.
Enhanced development platform
New features in SharePoint 2013 for developers include:
- New Cloud App Model - create self-contained pieces of functionality that extend the capabilities of a SharePoint website.
- Core enhancements - there is a broad new API for server and client development, support for REST endpoints for web services and more.
- Mobility - combine Windows Phone 7 applications with on-premise SharePoint or with remote SharePoint (e.g. SharePoint Online) services. Integrate new features such as Geolocation and 'push' notifications into your mobile applications.
- Search - improved custom content processing with the Content Enrichment web service.
- Workflows - new Workflow Manager Client 1.0 is a redesigned workflow infrastructure that is built on Windows Workflow Foundation 4 and enables information workers to author their own powerful workflows. Workflows now execute in the cloud and support the new app model.
- Business Connectivity Services - new features include OData connectivity, external events, external data in apps, filtering and sorting, support for REST and others.
- Application services - a range of new services include the Machine Translation Service which translates sites, documents and streams for multilingual support.
Intranet sites are licenced using a Server/CAL (Client Access License) model. SharePoint Server 2013 is required for each running instance of the software and CALs are required for each person or device accessing a SharePoint Server.
SharePoint Standard CAL
The Standard CAL licences core SharePoint functionality:
SharePoint Enterprise CAL
- Sites - a single infrastructure for all your business web sites
- Communities - an integrated collaboration platform
- Content - enterprise content management capabilities
- Search - search relevance, refinement and people - excludes enterprise search.
The Enterprise CAL is additive - you also need the Standard CAL. The Enterprise CAL additionally licences:
- FAST Enterprise Search - enterprise search capabilities
- Business solutions - includes support for Access Services and InfoPath Services
- Business intelligence - includes Power View, PerformancePoint Services, Excel Services and Visio Services.
For Extranet and Internet sites scenarios, no CALs are required for External Users. External users means users that are not either your or your affiliates¿ employees, or your or your affiliates¿ onsite contractors or onsite agents.
SharePoint Online is licensed on per-user basis. You can purchase SharePoint Online as a standalone plan or included as part of Office 365 plans.