Why Develop an Outlook Social Connector Provider

Last modified: June 30, 2010

Applies to: Office 2007 | Outlook 2010 | SharePoint Server 2010

A Microsoft Outlook Social Connector (OSC) provider allows Outlook users to view in Outlook an aggregation of social information updates applied on a professional or social network site.

Using a social network provider, the OSC shows activities in the People Pane that appears below the Reading Pane in the Outlook explorer window, as shown in Figure 1. Because the OSC is built on an open provider model, you can conveniently build providers to work with the OSC to display social network data (such as friends, profiles, activities, and relationship information) in Outlook.

Apart from public social network sites, you can also use OSC provider extensibility to build providers for line-of-business applications or internal corporate web sites and to integrate their services into Outlook.

Figure 1. Outlook Social Connector pane

Outlook Social Connector pane