If you’re with us at Microsoft Ignite this year—happening right now in Orlando, FL—you’ve already heard the big news about Microsoft Planner and Microsoft Teams. And if you’re not here, we’ve got you covered: just today we announced Tasks in Microsoft Teams, a cohesive task management experience that brings your tasks from Microsoft To Do and Planner into Teams. We’re extremely excited about Tasks, but understand that longtime Planner users might have questions—questions like, “Is Planner going away?”
The short answer is, no, and we’re as committed as ever to Planner. The long answer, and more details about the Tasks in Teams experience, is below.
Tasks in Teams—we’ll refer to it as just “Tasks” for the rest of this post—consolidates personal tasks from To Do and team tasks from Planner into a single, comprehensive view in Teams. In short, To Do and Planner are the task services powering this new experience.
There are two places in Teams where you can access Tasks: as an app in the left siderail and as a tab within individual teams. The app comprises all tasks from To Do and Planner, like the screenshot below. As for the tab, you can think of that as Planner renamed: it functions the same way And just like the current Planner tab, you can add multiple Tasks tabs to a single team. Just keep in mind that the tab is for team tasks; personal tasks from To Do cannot be added to a tab.
Tasks syncs with To Do and Planner, so items added to Tasks are replicated in To Do and Planner and vice versa. Additional task endpoints, like Outlook and Office documents, connect or will connect soon with Tasks, too. Ultimately, our goal is to bring your tasks to Tasks in Teams no matter where you first create them. Additional information on task endpoints is toward the bottom of this post. If you’d like to learn more about our overall tasks strategy, please read today's post on the Microsoft 365 blog.
The bottom line for both the Tasks app and Tasks tab is that they’re nearly identical to the experiences in To Do and Planner today—there’s virtually nothing new for you to learn. And there will be nothing for you to do when Tasks comes online for everyone in 2020: all of your personal and team tasks will automatically get ported to the new Tasks experience.
There are a few key differences—or rather, benefits.
The most significant is the new List view for the Tasks tab. That view is actually what’s shown in the screenshot above and will be the default view when you first create a tab. Don’t worry, you can still easily switch to the existing Board, Charts, and Schedule views you’re used to in Planner. The List view is the only one available for the Tasks app at this time. We’re working to bring the same views from the tab to the app in the future.
We’ve also added the Team Task List Picker, which appears under your personal tasks next to the left siderail.
The Picker makes it easy to quickly navigate to your various team task lists.
We’ve also optimized Teams on iOS and Android to include the new Tasks experiences by default. The List view is the only one that will be available on mobile.
As mentioned earlier, additional task endpoints are or will be available soon for Tasks. The currently available endpoints are:
- Outlook: tasks in Outlook for the web sync to To Do and, therefore, your Tasks app. Upgrades to the Outlook client apps to have more To Do features coming in 2020.
- Microsoft Launcher: the native Tasks widget and To Do widget in Microsoft Launcher, and Android app, sync with To Do.
- Cortana: the Lists section in your Cortana notebook syncs with To Do. You can also tell Cortana to add tasks to To Do, which will then replicate to the Tasks app.
Future endpoints include:
- Word, Excel, and PowerPoint: starting January, you can add a task using @mentions in Word. The same functionality will be available in Excel and PowerPoint later in 2020.
We can’t wait for you to start using Tasks in Teams! Now more than ever, we encourage you to submit ideas for team tasks through the Planner UserVoice site. We also hope you’ll continue to visit the Planner Tech Community for all the latest news.