Microsoft is bringing its professional diagram tool, Visio, to Microsoft 365 commercial customers. Previously, Visio was only available as a standalone purchase. But starting in July, a lightweight version of the tool will be available a no additional cost.
Visio lets users create complex and professional diagrams for all kinds of scenarios. Like most other Microsoft Office apps, there are templates you can build from, but you can also design a diagram from scratch. This can cover anything from organizational charts to floor plans. You can also collaborate with other people on a diagram to get things done faster. Visio is available within Teams to make collaboration easier, and it integrates with other Microsoft 365 products.
There’s also the Visio Data Visualizer add-in for Excel. With this feature, you can quickly create a diagram from the information on a spreadsheet to help you visualize it. And of course, once you create a diagram you can export them as images and add them to Word documents or PowerPoint presentations.
Visio’s standalone plans will continue to be available, though, and they offer certain features you can’t get otherwise. Microsoft offers two standalone Visio plan options. Plan 1 includes the basic Visio functionality on the web, 2GB of OneDrive for Business cloud storage, and integration with tools like Teams and Power BI. This one costs $5/user/month. Visio Plan 2 includes a desktop Visio app for use on up to five PCs, plus features like exporting to Microsoft Flow, the Excel data visualizer, and PowerPoint slide snippets. It also allows users to connect to external data sources, and it costs $15/user/month.
As mentioned above, Visio will be available to commercial Microsoft 365 customers starting next month. But if you can’t wait that long, you can sign up for early access right now. That should let you try it soon.