Four more reasons to love apps in Microsoft Teams

Published 01-21-2020 09:00 AM 39.3K Views
Microsoft Teams can help you streamline your productivity tasks and critical business processes when you integrate your apps and workflows – whether that’s tracking student grades, re-stocking supplies, or giving employees the tools and resources they need to manage their careers.  We are constantly working to improve the apps experience – from finding the right app to making it readily accessible when you need it –  and are excited to share four more reasons to love apps in Teams!
1. Easily find the apps you need
Thanks to the integrated search in the app store flyout, it has never been easier to find the exact app that you’re looking for.  When you click the “…” on the Teams app bar, you’ll see a grid of apps and can simply type the app name that you’re looking for into the search bar.  You can also search apps that support messaging extensions by clicking the “…” in the message bar , and searching for your app - only those apps that support message extensions will appear here. 

2. Feel confident about adding the right apps
Choosing the right app to use shouldn’t be a stressful process – there are a few important details that you want to know before deciding to add that app.  The updated app install flow provides app data connection details, privacy and permissions, rich visual screenshots of the app, how it can be used in Teams, and much more – all from the "add” screen for that app, which is made available anywhere you can add an app in Teams (for example in the app store, or by clicking the “+” at the top of a channel).

3. Effortlessly add apps
Now that you’ve added that app that you can’t live without, you may want to use it in multiple places in Teams without having to go through the process of finding it again and again.  Fortunately, when you add an app in Teams, that app can be easily added anywhere you work.  Just add it once (from the app store, for example) and you’ll then find that app available to pin to the top of channels or chats, as well as on the “…” on your Teams app bar.
Of course, you still have full control over which apps are added, and where.
4. Readily access your personal apps
Pinning apps to relevant channels or chats is a great way to rally a team around a particular app.  But personal apps don’t neatly align to a particular channel or chat, so you will soon be able to pin these personal apps right (well, actually left :smile:) where you can readily access them – on the Teams app bar.  Simply find the app, right-click the icon, and select “pin”.  Even after you navigate away, the app icon will remain so you can easily return to it. 
This feature is in addition to the Teams Admin’s ability to establish tenant-wide policies for the apps that appear on everyone’s Teams app bar. 
Start streamlining your work by bringing your apps into Teams
Check out the Teams apps catalog!  There’s a good chance the apps that you already use and love are available.  Or build your own custom apps with the help of the low-code app development tool Microsoft Power Apps and bring them into Teams
Frequent Contributor

@Pete_Daderko - Is pinning apps to side bar available globally? I do not seem to know how to make it work in my tenant, even though Allow user pinning is enabled.

There is a big problem with adding apps in Teams, in my organization apps permissions are done with a whitelist meaning apps are blocked by default and are then manually approved. The problem is to approve an app I need to request that it should be approved but since it is already blocked I can't see it at all and don't even know that it exists. So I think we need some way of seeing unapproved apps even if we are not allowed to install them.
Frequent Contributor

@Sai Gutta Yes thanks, looks like you can see more apps there. I still think this needs to be possible in Teams as well tough since most people will not realize the other option exists. At the very least a link could be added from Teams to the website (and an explanation that some apps might be hidden).

Senior Member

Can you please confirm when the personal app pinning will be available?




Hi @koltregaskes-work@Sai Gutta - all Teams users should be able to pin apps to their app bar in the next few weeks.

Occasional Visitor

It’s great to be able to register apps but using them leaves a lot to be desired.  All of the apps including web sites lose state when you change tabs. So if you need to flip from planner to files then you lose your view and return to the default view in effect restarting planner. 

This shortfall is even more obvious in files where if you need to copy links to an agenda in a web based CMS such as Confluence then every time you switch back to files it has returned to the top of any directory structure and you have to go back to the directory you were in to continue. 

This largely makes the apps unusable apart from casual use and precludes teams from any serious use case intended to pull all your work into a single tabbed space. Even for basic sharing in meetings. 

Occasional Contributor

Yes, @TheSleepingBarber is talking about the biggest impediment I have had to getting people to use apps. I have onenote notebooks/pages connected to groups/channels but I advise users AGAINST using them within Teams other than to get shared onenote notebooks to show in their “recent“ notebooks within onenote.*


This is because if they use them within teams because they can’t even thumbs up a message without completely leaving that app (in our case, onenote)! And to get back to what they were doing, they have to wait for the app to reload! And after it does reload, they are not in the same place they were before!

For apps to be useful, it will be essential to have tabs within teams or at least the option to open a notebook (or other app) in a browser. 

* Also astounding is the fact that in order for  a user to have access to a shared notebook in his/her own onenote  app, s/he has to open the notebook within teams, then know to click the globe icon to open it in a web browser (& log in to Microsoft if not already logged in in that browser)—only then does the user have access to it (via one‘s “recent“ notebooks 🤯)! ( This does not happen on the iOS app if one has onenote installed, by the way.) Please fix this so I am not having to tell users about this hack in order to have access to notebooks they have already accessed!


Great post I Think apps can drive teamwork even more. A good governance model around apps is really important here.

Occasional Contributor
@Aaron Green - The requirement for tabs to retain their state has been around on UserVoice for about 3 years, and has been repeatedly asked for in many different guises. Although I notice that that main thread has recently been upgraded to "Working on it", but my expectations are not high. Compact Mode was in "working on it" state for over 1000 days while being steadily downgraded over time.
Senior Member
Hi, can you help me find admin setting for allowing pin any application for users? When somebody from our tenant use pin application (4. Readily access your personal apps), so after Teams write "You admin has updated your settings. Some of your pinned apps may have moved". Thank you
Frequent Contributor


@Pete_Daderko -  I am able to pin now 


@Pete_Daderko - Great Post. Could you please let me know what all components of custom teams apps are supported in Teams mobile client? Is there any links to Microsoft docs where these details are published? Thanks.

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‎Jan 26 2021 12:52 PM
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