Gallery appFor end users, the design improvements are nice but the new Gallery app is truly a transformation. It is essentially the 'Gallery Plus' app, developed by Olivier Paroz. It is essentially a full rewrite based on the new app framework, after which lots of features and performance improvements were made. The app has been around for a while and Olivier has solidly proven himself as maintainer so I'm really glad this app is now a part of the core ownCloud experience. Below is Oliviers' talk from the ownCloud Contributor Conference, introducing the new Gallery to the community!
NotificationsThe new notifications are cool, too - only one app supports them, for now, and that one isn't there by default so you won't see notifications until apps get updated. But as soon as they get adapted to the new API, accepting share invitations or getting notified of changes becomes easier and nicer. If you want to play with the notifications right now, go get the announcementcenter app and send some news to your users to see how it works!
New Appliance and Proxy appTechnically not new, as both were announced at the conference and made available since then, but super awesome: we have an official ownCloud appliance. This will make installing ownCloud a lot easier for a lot of people - and bring back some kind of Windows Server support, too.
On top of that, the appliance contains the ownCloud Proxy app, which is really great for lowering the bar even further. Simply put, ownCloud Proxy enables you to take a laptop and an Internet connection, connect to your privately hosted ownCloud from anywhere, without requiring you to make any changes to your local network settings – no router configuration, no DNS entries, no domain name registration. The ownCloud Proxy service relies on a partner who provides the service for a fee. Right now, there is one partner, pageKite. It would rock if somebody else saw business in this, too, of course!
Now, go, go and get it. Note that the VM isn't available as of right now (14:05) because it's still building... An 8.1.3 based one is there, though.