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In August, we saw updates in Microsoft Teams that continue to improve the meetings experience and new features that provide developers a rich canvas to build workflows to enhance personal productivity. We are excited to share new features this month across meetings, calling, devices, chat and collaboration, IT admin, and industry. Check out our new capabilities below.


What’s New: Meetings & Calling & Devices
We are continuing to transform the meetings experience in Teams to include new features, settings, and devices to create a better experience.


Spotlight
Meeting organizers and presenters will be able to lock their video as the main view for all meeting participants. This helps the presenter control the main video feed that a participant sees during the meeting. This is different from “Pin participant”, which allows an individual to pin a video feed for their own view but not for the view of all meeting participants. Spotlight will be available in the next few months.

spotlight.png

 

Meeting recording storage for areas where Stream is not available
Teams meeting recordings are currently disabled for customers whose Teams data is stored in-country, if Microsoft Stream is not available in that country. A new admin setting will allow you to turn on meeting recordings if Microsoft Stream data residency is not yet in country. If this setting is turned on, Teams meeting recordings will be saved in the data center closest to the region.

 

Optimized Microsoft Teams Experience Now Available on VMware Horizon 8
With growing demand for collaboration tools to support remote workers, VMWare Horizon 8 now offers enhanced audio and video experience for Microsoft Teams. The optimization pack helps provide better user experience and improved productivity for those leveraging Microsoft Teams across Horizon virtual desktop (VDI) and published application environments.

 

New Teams devices to enhance collaboration and meetings
The Windows collaboration display by Avocor is the world’s first and only Windows collaboration display certified for both Microsoft Teams and Azure. Featuring an advanced interactive display, natural inking and innovative IoT sensor technologies, the AVW-6555 is designed to enhance collaboration and accelerate teamwork. Avocor’s AVW-6555 also provides seamless integration with Microsoft Teams video and audio-conferencing capabilities immediately with a Teams-enabled computer.

Avocor.png

 

Logitech now offers Microsoft Teams Rooms powered by HP. Read more about the Logitech + HP bundles here.

Logitech + HP.png

Logitech Swytch adds a new way to use MTR for meetings on any video conferencing, webinar, or broadcasting service. Watch how Logitech Swytch works with Microsoft Teams Rooms here.

 

 

What’s New: Chat & Collaboration
We have added new chat and collaboration capabilities to keep everyone connected. Check out the new capabilities below.


Real time presence
Stay focused throughout the day with Microsoft Teams. Whether you are free for a quick chat or presenting in a meeting, real time presence increases the accuracy of your status so others know when to reach out.

 

Easily access and manage Visio files in Microsoft Teams
Visio tabs in Teams allow team members to quickly access content in a dedicated space within a channel or in a chat. Adding a tab in Teams is available to all Teams users, editing, however is only available for those with a Visio Plan 1 or Plan 2 subscription. We’re also releasing an enhanced set of multi-page operations in Visio for web, enabling you to view all the pages at once, reorder pages with drag and drop, insert pages at any position in the file, duplicate existing pages on a single click, and navigate non-sequential pages using the keyboard arrows.

 

 

What’s New: IT Admin
Changes in Incoming IP Video policy
We are updating our meeting policies to allow IT administrators more control over how video is managed in Teams Meetings. Current policy can only be set to prevent outgoing video. We are extending the Allow IP Video policy to prevent both outgoing and incoming video as needed. Tenant administrators can use this policy to manage bandwidth; This item has been updated to reflect changes to the original plan.

 

Skype for Business Online connector consolidating to Teams module
We are simplifying the Teams administration experience with a single PowerShell module that includes complete management capabilities for Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business Online, by introducing full functionality of Skype for Business Online Connector into the Teams Module.


This means that Skype for Business Online Connector in the Skype for Business Online PowerShell, which has been a separate product that contains many cmdlets needed to manage Microsoft Teams, now has been consolidated into a single PowerShell module.

 

 

What’s New: Developer & Platform
We are announcing new features to the Teams platform to continue to provide a rich canvas for developers to build, engage, and transform workflows.

 

Teams App Submission API
We are excited to announce that the Teams App Submission API is now generally available. This new Graph API allows all users at any organization to develop on the platform of their choice and submit their apps into Teams with zero friction. In turn, relieving the burden of discovering, approving, packaging, and deploying these apps by IT.

App Submission API.jpg

 

Graph Resource Specific Consent
Your Teams app can now call Teams Graph APIs from the BETA endpoint without needing admin consent. These APIs include creating, renaming, and deleting channels, reading channel messages, creating tabs, and adding/removing members from Teams. This capability will empower Team owners to install an app for their specific team and restrict the app’s scope and access to data to only that one team. This allows team owners to make decisions versus needing the global IT admin to provision access.

 

Support for native mobile device camera and location capabilities for tabs
Support for native mobile device capabilities for Teams apps using tabs is now generally available! Developers, including those building Teams apps through Power Apps, will be able to use device permissions to build richer experiences, such as capturing images through the camera or providing GPS coordinates. This experience had been supported for the Teams desktop client and is being introduced to the Teams mobile app via new APIs.

Camera and Location capabilities for tabs.png

 

New Power Automate triggers for Teams
Power Automate is adding two new Teams triggers allowing you to simplify even more of your work. Now, using the “for a selected message” trigger, Teams users can create customized message actions to start a process directly from a message – for example, a chat about a customer can easily be used to automatically create a Sales opportunity in Dynamics. Additionally, when a team member is removed from a team, specific actions can be set in motion – for example, sending a message to the team owner.

 

New Power Automate actions for Teams
Power Automate is adding two new Teams actions. You can create a flow to automatically create a team, greatly simplifying the admin work of setting up teams. Flow builders can also automatically @mention a specific user when they incorporate this action into their flows, so they can be sure that important messages are seen by their intended recipients.

 

 

What’s New: Teams for Education
New expanded capabilities in Education Insights
Insights in Microsoft Teams for Education now has a new view in public preview that allows administrators to monitor digital engagement from the student to the system level, and provides visibility into educator best practices in remote instruction. It’s designed to ensure equity and continuity of teaching in a remote world and comply with regulations for digital engagement reporting with a one-click data export.

education insights 1.png

 

To learn more about Insights and other new features and updates coming to Microsoft Teams for Education, visit the What’s New in Teams for Education | August 2020 post.

 


What’s New: Teams for US Government
We are here to support US Government clouds. Below are the new capabilities for the GCC, GCC High, and DOD environments.

 

New lobby setting: only the organizer joins the meeting directly for GCC
A new lobby setting is coming to Teams Meeting Options. We are adding "Only me" as an option to the "Who can bypass lobby?" setting. Once enabled, only the organizer will be able to join the meeting directly. Everyone else, including people from within the same organization, will be sent to the lobby.

 

New experience for launching instant channel meetings for GCC
Meet Now buttons in Teams channels will have a new home. You will soon find them in the Channel header where you can easily find and launch the meeting.

 

Improved Teams meeting join launcher experience for GCC
When you click on a Teams meeting join link, you will now see an optimized and improved join experience. You will be prompted with an option to join on the web, download the Teams client, or join with the native Teams client. This will result in faster and more confident meeting join.

 

New policy to prevent upload of profile picture for GCC, GCC High, and DoD
Teams desktop and web experiences will honor the Outlook on the Web mailbox policy setting that can control whether users are able change their profile pictures. This applies to GCC, GCC High, and DoD tenants.

 

See all the new ways to work together in Microsoft Teams

17 Comments
Regular Contributor

Spotlight would be great. In fact if we got Spotlight and the ability to hard mute attendee video and audio, it would work well as lite webinar function.

Contributor

Hard mute is on the roadmap, not sure if it will include video.  They also need the ability to restrict or turn off chat.


Next few months, maybe in 2021.  The blog has a poor track record of release timing.

Occasional Contributor

Spotlight feature will be great! Will also a recording reflect who was spotlighted? And can you choose a presentation to be spotlighted (or not)?

Occasional Visitor

I really like the enhancements for education. Being able to track student interaction is vital. Does anyone know when they will bring the "share system audio" to the mac application? So many of my students use macs and this would help me in my higher ed classes.

Microsoft

It would be great if we keep the tradition started in the July edition of the announcements and add estimated release dates next to each of these new capabilities.

Thank you

Senior Member

very nice feature updates

however, speaking of Teams Meeting Room device, they are too many components, too many cables connected, and not that much convenient to use for the end user

hope hardware manufactures can produce integrated, plug-and-play, wireless products with Microsoft 

Senior Member

Loving the single PowerShell module! Spotlight and Call Merge are also amazing! Not to mention the compliance recording features :) All in all, great work guys! Keep it coming :)

Occasional Contributor

Does anyone have anymore information regarding the MS Teams  VMware Horizon 8 Optimisation. I can't seem to find any online references or documentation to it?

New Contributor

Love the consolidation of the PowerShell for Teams and Skype for Business into one module.  Is it ready for use?  

New Contributor

@bprater : Information on MS Teams VMware Horizon 8 optimization: Configuring Media Optimization for Microsoft Teams 

Occasional Visitor

1. We teachers need the “Show Participants” list appear as alphabetical. This is critical for attendance. It saves time taking role. We need to see who is on time, having the listing of joining members ALWAYS shift to ABC order saves a tremendous amount of time. We need this feature immediately! Even though you can download to attendance, that doesn’t help while conducting the actual class of 30 to 50 kids. 

2. There are 3 steps to “Mute All” button. That takes too long. We teachers who have slower computers (and a parent who is arguing with a child) need an Instant Mute button without having to wait 10 seconds to: “select participants”  then when the list appears, “select mute all” then after clicking there —the statement “would you like to mute all,” YES, then that box disappears and all are muted. Why not have an instant “Moderator Mute All” button that is always visible for instant access — and provide the option for “mute all” where members can unmute themselves and “moderates mute all” which allows for students (kinders through 3rd grate not to randomly unmute themselves—there are always a few who do). 

We need a green share to have the default set to have volume ON as opposed to IFF in settings. Most times we are sharing a video and selecting that audio setting is another time consuming step that slows down our already slow computers. Why not havi it set as on — what’s the purpose of the off default??? 

3. We need a way to see the entire class of 25 on screen even if they do not have video on. I can not call their name and manage making sure they are actually participating if i don’t have them all in screen. 

Thank you! 

Contributor

Zoom just released muti-spotlight, btw.    Teams needs this if it expects Meetings to supplant live events.

Super Contributor

@Microsoft_Teams_team 

Would be nice, if you could give even some words about New Meeting Experience issues:

- When the full screen is back.

- When the New Meeting Experience keeps enabled, even you do logout.

Contributor

@Microsoft_Teams_team is Spotlight part of the new meeting experience? We try to set up some information package for our end users and want to know if this will be released with the new experience or before/after that release?

Regular Visitor

Spotlight is an awesome function. But the fact that it will take months to roll out is more than bad. As @Phillip Lyle mentions, Zoom has multi-spotlight.

In these days were Teams is one of the most used tools in several organizations, MS needs to listen to the users and be a bit more agile in there approach.

Senior Member

turned on the setting 'Turn on new meeting experience (New meetings and calls will open in separate windows. Requires restarting Teams.)', it's good that meeting windows separated, but with the full screen mode,it will be better.

(sometimes,the focus mode is not enough 

Occasional Visitor

Hi There

 

Ive set up a Teams Meeting for Monday 6th October. I will be elsewhere however and can`t attend:

 

1) Could the meeting still go ahead on Teams in my absence - they have the details

2) Could I transfer the host to someone else

 

Would much prefer not to cancel in order for someone else to send invites out

 

Please respond Derek