This month, we have new meetings, calling, devices, chat, collaboration, platform, and industry features we will not want you to miss. Read on to stay up-to-date. If you are interested in our recent Microsoft Build news, check out our Teams Build blog!
What’s New: Meetings, Calling, and Devices
Improved meeting join launcher experience
When launching a Teams meeting from a link, you will be provided with clearer options for how to join the meeting. You will be prompted with an option to join on the web, download the Teams client, or join with the native Teams client. We are gradually rolling this out over the coming weeks, and in the interim, you may continue to see this and the former experience.
Easily access meeting options during a Teams meeting
We are making it easier for meeting organizers to quickly and easily change their presenter and lobby settings once a meeting has started by providing a link directly in the participants pane. This new functionality is available for both scheduled and “Meet Now” meetings.
Download a participant report in a Teams meeting
Meeting organizers, especially teachers, often need to know who joined their Teams meetings. You can download a participant report, found in the roster view that includes join and leave times for participants. Available in the roster view, meeting organizers can download the report that includes those users who joined while the organizer was present. This feature is only available within the meeting while the meeting is active. Available on desktop (Windows and Mac) and the web.
Set tenant-wide default selection for “Who Can Present” in meetings
Tenant admins can now update their Teams meeting policies to allow for a new default selection when choosing who can present in new Teams meetings (everyone, people in my organization, specific people, or only me). Today, the default selection is “everyone” unless the meeting organizer selects otherwise through the meetings option configuration. To start, organizations can set this policy via a PowerShell cmdlet, and soon after we will have this policy configurable in the Admin portal.
Set background effects policy at a user-level
Tenant admins can soon assign a user-level policy to control how users engage with background effects in Teams meetings. Options include: offer no filters; background blur only; use background blur and default provided images; and all, which includes the ability for users to upload their own custom images.
Better policy controls over screen sharing from chats
Screen share from chat allows you to immediately start sharing your screen in a 1-1 chat or group chat. This entry point was previously governed by the AllowPrivateCalling policy. If this policy is disabled, users are not able to screen share from chat. The option to start a screen share from chat will now be governed by the ScreenSharingMode policy. Further, the ability to “add audio” to a screen share from chat session (if you want to talk to someone while screen sharing) will be governed by a user’s AllowPrivateCalling setting. This ensures that users who have AllowPrivateCalling disabled cannot start audio calls via screen share from chat.
Teams and Skype Interoperability
Teams and Skype interoperability will enable collaboration with more partners, customers, and suppliers who rely upon Skype for Consumer (SFC) as their communication app. On either platform, customers will be able to discover users via email search, then chat or call using audio/video. Clients supported include Desktop, Web and Mobile (iOS/Android). Admins will be able to control user access to this feature from The Teams Admin Center.
Reverse Number Lookup (RNL) Enhancements
In the past, the caller name sometimes did not show when they called you. Back in October 2019 we released the feature to make it easier to identify the caller. With the latest enhancements to RNL, the Telco display name will now also show up in your Activity Feed, Call History, and Voicemail as well.
Microsoft Teams Rooms, app version 18.104.22.168 now available
While physical meeting rooms may not be a focal point for many right now, there are still organizations and industries whose essential workers continue to rely on these spaces during this time. We also recognize the vital role Microsoft Teams Rooms will play when organizations return to work. The latest update, app version 22.214.171.124, is now available on the Windows store and is coming to every Teams room over the next few weeks. New features include: Modern authentication support, New application splash screen, Ability to project content to a single display when using a HDMI cable in a dual display configuration, Support for dynamic emergency calling, and more. To learn more about these new features, read the Microsoft Teams Rooms May Update blog.
Poly announces new solution for Microsoft Teams Rooms
Poly Room Solution for Microsoft Teams not only delivers the premium Poly audio and video for Teams, but also provides a clutter-free experience from start to finish, with simple installation and maintenance in any size room. To learn more about the Poly solutions for Microsoft Teams Rooms, coming later this year, click here.
Jabra PanaCast now certified for Microsoft Teams
The Jabra PanaCast is a plug-and-play device, certified for Microsoft Teams. The Jabra PanaCast is designed to improve meetings by using three 13-megapixel cameras and real-time video stitching to give a full 180° view. Enjoy a natural, inclusive human perspective, with no blind spots ensuring quick, easy collaboration with hassle-free video and audio. To learn more about the Jabra PanaCast, click here.
Yealink, EPOS, and Jabra announce new Teams peripherals
With increased demand for remote work and virtual communication, having the right set of personal devices provides painless interaction and increases time for meaningful connection. With Teams certified devices, you can join professional meetings anywhere with high audio fidelity that removes distracting background noise and ensures that your voice is heard clearly.
Here are some new releases this month:
- EPOS ADAPT 360, 460T, 560, and 660 headsets range from in ear and over the ear options that optimize concentration and productivity any environment with Active Noise Cancellation, Bluetooth connectivity, and a dedicated Teams button. Availability varies by product: ADAPT 360 (July 3), ADAPT 460T (June 29), ADAPT 560 (June 26), ADAPT 660 (June 22). You can learn more here.
- Yealink UH36 Dual/Mono is a simple and lightweight USB headset with a dedicated Teams button for long conference calls. Availability starting on May 15. You can learn more here.
- Jabra Speak 650 is a speaker phone with a dedicated Teams button helps users hold natural conversations with USB and Bluetooth. Availability starting on June 1. You can learn more here.
Limited time partner offers available for Teams Devices
Crestron is offering a program for customers looking to upgrade existing systems to those certified for Microsoft Teams. Special offers are available for a Crestron Smart Soundbar, Flex C-Series Integrator Kit and Mercury system. Offers end June 30, 2020 and are available in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Asia and EMEA. Purchase orders must be placed through an authorized Crestron dealer.
For customers using Trio Visual+ in Skype for Business who would like to move to a Microsoft Teams environment, Poly is offering a Trio Visual+ to Poly Studio X30 Trade In program. With this promotion, Poly Microsoft customers can replace Trio with Poly Studio X30 and TC8 controller, or pair Trio with the Poly Studio X30, for Teams video meetings in huddle and small room spaces. Between April 15, 2020 and December 31, 2020, customers can trade in Trio Visual+ and save up to $200 when they upgrade to a Poly Studio X30 or up to $300 when they upgrade to a Poly Studio X30 with TC8 controller. This program is globally available.
For a limited time, Yealink is offering a devices bundle trial program for remote workers, giving customers 50% off MSRP on any two WFH devices (limit one per device model). This offer is valid through July 31, 2020 and is globally available. Additionally, Yealink is offering a coupon code for the VC210 Teams edition collaboration bar on the Microsoft Teams devices showcase. Use the coupon code: Yealink4Teams at checkout to access the discounted price. This offer is available in the US and Canada only and is valid through July 31, 2020.
What’s New: Chat & Collaboration
Templates in Teams
Create a new team even faster with a variety of templates for common team types. Options will include event management, crisis response, hospital ward and bank branch, just to name a few. Templates comes with pre-defined channels, apps, and guidance on how to utilize and customize it. IT professionals can standardize team structures by creating new custom templates for their organization. Templates in Teams will roll out in the next few months and appear automatically. Check out the deep dive blog to learn more.
Microsoft Lists in Teams
Microsoft Lists helps you track information and organize work. Lists are simple, smart, and flexible, so you can track issues, assets, routines, contacts, inventory and more using customizable views and smart rules and alerts to keep everyone in sync. To learn more, visit the new Microsoft Lists resource center and get first looks at the Microsoft Lists product demo video.
Bring more people together in group chats and teams
Whether you need to collaborate with others to deliver a big project or work with a large group of people to complete an ad-hoc task, Microsoft Teams now allows you to bring more people together. Group chats will now be able to accommodate up to 250 users and teams can now have up to 10,000 members.
Pop out chats into separate windows
Users can now streamline their workflow and pop out chats into separate windows. This allows people to move more easily between ongoing conversations. This is now generally available.
What’s New: Onboarding your organization to Teams
New Skype for Business to Teams Upgrade Advisor
Our newest Advisor for Teams, the Skype for Business Upgrade plan, has launched within the Microsoft Teams Admin Center. Whether you’re just getting started with Microsoft Teams, already using Teams alongside Skype for Business, or ready to upgrade, this provides everything you need for a successful transition. Designed for Skype for Business customers with online or on-premises environments, the Skype for Business Upgrade plan shares a proven success framework for implementing change and step-by-step process to enable your organization’s technical and end-user readiness. We’ll connect you with valuable upgrade resources including planning guidance and best practices, free workbooks, schedules and communication templates and live 1:many planning workshops. Learn more here about using Advisor for Teams to help you roll out Teams and upgrade from Skype for Business.
What’s New: Developer, Platform, and App management
Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code Extension for Teams
Developers can use the new Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code Teams extension to quickly build project scaffolding, configure features, create app package manifest and setup hosting, validate app package manifest, and start the app publishing process (for yourself, to your organization’s catalog, or to the Teams app store). Visual Studio Code extension is available in public preview today. Visual Studio extension coming soon!
Bringing low-code bots to Teams, with Power Virtual Agents
We are working with the newest component of the Power Platform – Power Virtual Agents, which is a low-code chatbot platform. New features will make it easier to create and manage low-code chatbots from within Teams and more streamlined for end users to use Power Virtual Agents bots in Teams. These new features are:
- Bot Template: FAQ bot template available in GitHub
- Single sign-on: Power Virtual Agents bots will be available, removing the need for users to sign in again when using a Power Virtual Agents bot in Teams
Simplified Power Apps and Power Virtual Agents “Add to Teams”
Coming soon, Power Apps makers will be able to click a single “Add to Teams” button in Power Apps, which will push the app to the Teams app store. Similarly, the process of adding low-code bots from Power Virtual Agents will be simplified, so developers can spend more time building and less time deploying.
Enhanced workflow automation with Power Automate + Teams
There are several new Power Automate triggers and actions built specifically for Teams to unlock custom message extensions, allow for automated @mentioning, and provide a customized bot experience. To make the process of building automation even easier, we are also rolling out new business process scenario templates built for Teams. When users create a new flow, they will see these templates when they select the “Create from Template option.”
Improved Power BI sharing to Teams
We have made it even easier to share Power BI reports to Teams – simply select the report to share and click the new “Share to Teams” button in Power BI. You’ll be prompted to select the user or channel to send the report to, which will automatically be posted to the conversation.
Users can now also copy individual charts in a Power BI report, and when they are pasted to a Teams conversation, the chat will include a rich thumbnail preview of the chart, as well as an adaptive card allowing users to take actions on that chart.
If you want to read more about all our new developer capabilities, check out our Teams Developer blog post: What’s New in the Microsoft Teams Platform | Build 2020.
What’s New: Education
Change in meeting join experience for our education customers
Today, we allow anyone within an organization to start a Teams meeting, regardless if they are the meeting organizer or not. Moving forward, we will restrict the ability to start a meeting to only those users who have been assigned a policy to create a meeting within their organization. Meeting attendees without the ability to create a meeting will see a pre-join screen indicating that the meeting hasn’t started. These individuals will be automatically admitted into the meeting once a user with permissions joins and starts the meeting. For example, where teachers are assigned a policy that enables them to create meetings, but students are not: if a student clicks on a Teams meeting not yet started by a teacher, they will be admitted into the meeting once a teacher has started a meeting.
Keeping distance learning engaging and secure
With many school and universities closed for the foreseeable future, Teams supports faculty, educators, and students to connect, engage, and learn. Here is the latest guidance on how to maximize learning at a distance and keep students safe:
- Manage student, faculty, and staff engagement in meetings, live events, chat, and more. Learn more about these settings and how to manage them here.
- Get started in Teams with student and educator quick start guides and create, run, and attend safe Teams meetings with this guidance.
- Customize your school’s distance learning toolkit with these LMS integrations in Teams.
What’s New: US Government
In-line message translation in GCC and GCC High
In-line message translation will ensure that every worker in the team has a voice and facilitate global collaboration. With a simple click, people who speak different languages can fluidly communicate with one another by translating posts in channels and chat. This is now generally available.
To see many of these new capabilities in action with demonstrations, check out today’s Microsoft Mechanics video: Microsoft Teams updates | May 2020 and beyond.