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The latest Microsoft Teams news
There have been plenty of new releases within the Microsoft Teams ecosystem in July.
Microsoft Teams has announced updates across meetings, phones, devices, chat and collaboration, management and compliance, frontline workers and education, and government.
Stealing the show this month, Microsoft announced a slew of new Teams features at Inspire 2022. The focus of the updates which came out of this conference was on enhancing hybrid working and improving collaboration and communication between Teams users.
UC Today spoke to Microsoft MVP, Tom Arbuthnot about the latest Teams news, including Microsoft’s Q4 earnings report, Microsoft Inspire 2022, Microsoft’s digital contact centre, Spectralink handsets supported with Teams SIP Gateway, and more:
Microsoft Forms is now more closely integrated with Microsoft Teams through the introduction of new features and improvements to existing ones.
“Forms” is being replaced by “Polls”, which will allow users to add polls to their meetings and chats more easily. The Polls app can be found via the Teams app store or from the flyout menu in message extensions.
The interface of the poll suggestions pane has been updated to move the suggested polls to the side pane, create an entry point on the portals page for users to hide and show the side pane, and display the poll results view to the poll creator before the poll is launched. The poll result view has also had UI improvements in the form of colour indications, dynamic results, and more.
Recently created polls can be viewed, which lets you reuse the polls in meetings.
A dynamic confirmation for successfully submitted votes now appears after participants enter their responses.
A new poll question category called “Rating” has been added to allow users to provide their feedback.
Calls can now be removed from your history on Teams for desktop and mobile.
Call recording announcements will be played in your default language to or from a phone number.
The announcement will be played for both parties in a call for standard and compliance recordings.
Common area phone license updates include new security, endpoint management, and voicemail features, which are available via Azure Active Directory Premium Plan 1, Microsoft Intune, and Exchange Online Plan 2. Activated licenses for Azure Active Directory Premium Plan 1, Microsoft Intune, and Exchange Online Plan 2 can be verified in the admin centre.
Supported Teams phone devices with Common Area Phone licenses can access the calling features, such as call queues, call park and retrieve, auto attendants, cloud-based voicemail with Exchange Online Plan 2, forwarding rules, and group call pickup. Calling features can be enabled via the “Advanced Calling” setting in the admin centre or your Common Area Phone account.
Spectralink DECT devices have now been integrated with SIP Gateway, enabling frontline workers to use Teams calling on the devices to communicate with their colleagues. The SIP Gateway devices which are compatible are the IP-DECT 200/400/6500/Virtual IP-DECT/IP-DECT Base Station and handsets 72xx/75xx/76xx/77xx.
The Teams panel now includes a “manage” button which allows users to check out of reserved Teams Rooms from the panel with a single touch. The room is then returned to the room inventory. The manage button can also be used to extend reservations, provided the room is available at the given time.
Teams-certified peripheral devices which have the camera on/off feature can now turn on/off their individual video in meetings and calls.
The Logitech Tap IP (VR0029) has been certified for Microsoft Teams Rooms. The device’s touch controller enables easy meeting join using one touch-join, as well as a simplified setup using a single cable. It can be mounted onto a table for 180-degree rotation or onto a wall depending on the room space.
The Logi Dock docking stations are now certified for Microsoft Teams. The device eliminates the need for extra peripherals, cables and wiring. Up to five USB peripherals and two monitors can be connected and charged through the docking station.
LinkedIn profiles have now been integrated with Teams to get to know your colleagues better. Teams calls, chats, channels, and meetings will all display colleagues’ LinkedIn profile information, such as their past experience, current role, and more.
Channel posts can be used to notify team owners simultaneously with the mention “@TeamOwners” without needing to mention them individually.
Teams on iPad is more responsive to screen size, display modes, and app orientation. The canvas and app bar automatically aligns the screen size with the Team app.
Individual policy assignments from users can be cleaned up in bulk by admins so users can implement the correct policy using a group policy assignment or a global organisation-wide default.
Enterprise Information Archiving is supported on the Teams Export API, enabling retention, e-discovery, classification, e-discovery, and regulatory requirements. The API also supports reactions to messages, such as heart, surprised, and laugh.
UC Today recently explored how to manage communication compliance in Microsoft Teams.
Admins can add up to 500 teams with 25 users on each team via PowerShell command. Teams can be rolled out en masse within one day, allowing frontline workers to collaborate across multiple stores, roles, and locations.
Virtual appointment users can configure and validate hardware components prior to joining appointments using Device Test on Microsoft Teams. Cameras, microphones, and browsers can be validated, plus the internet connection can be checked any time before the appointment. Device Test includes a test call with Azure Communication Service, a troubleshooting guide, and the option to share test results with appointment organisers.
Customers in the UK can send and receive SMS reminders and confirmations with Teams Meetings links for virtual appointments which have been made using the Bookings app.
Microsoft has partnered with Moodle Learning Management System to create integrated learning experiences. Moodle now includes Microsoft Teams Meetings LTI and Classes LTI apps.
The following features are available to one or more of the following government bodies: US Government Community Cloud (GCC), US Government Community Cloud High (GCC-High), and Unites States Department of Defense (DoD).
DoD organisers can change the user experience, safety, and security settings for Teams Meetings using the “Meetings options” feature.
GCC and GCCH users will be able to view as many as 49 videos simultaneously in Meetings using virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).
Colleagues from GCC and GCCH can be viewed as a shared background in Meetings using Together Mode on VDI.
Microsoft is adding its own social media platform to Teams in the form of Viva Engage. The new application was announced at Inspire 2022.
A question and answer feature was also announced earlier in the month, which will be added to webinars and meetings to elicit feedback and other information.
Teams PSTN user numbers were shared on Microsoft’s Q4 earnings call, revealing there are now 12 million users.
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