Today, we are excited to unveil the latest innovations coming to Microsoft Teams that enable you to connect, collaborate and stay in the flow of work with full context. This post provides details for all the upcoming Teams features and solutions announced at Microsoft Ignite. To read about how we are evolving Microsoft Cloud to empower everyone for a new world of hybrid work, check out What’s new in Microsoft 365 blog.
Mesh for Microsoft Teams introduces a new generation of 2D and 3D meeting experiences with personalized avatars and immersive spaces to bridge the gap between physical and digital worlds. With personalized avatars, you can feel presence in meetings without turning on cameras. Users can make conversations interactive and express themselves using live reactions through avatars. Organizations now can use immersive spaces that resemble physical spaces, such as conference rooms, design centers and networking lounges to enhance camaraderie, spark creativity and foster water-cooler connections. Users can seamlessly leverage their existing documents, presentations, and content from Microsoft 365 and share and collaborate using this content spatially. Mesh enabled experiences in Teams provide users more flexibility and choice in how they connect, create, and collaborate. These experiences will be available in preview as part of Teams on PC, mobile and through mixed-reality headsets in the first half of 2022. Learn more here.
We are bringing new updates to the Teams meeting experience to foster more inclusive and productive hybrid meetings. All updates will be available in early 2022.
We are rolling out updates to Microsoft Teams Rooms and new Teams devices that improve hybrid meeting experiences, allowing everyone to be seen, heard and fully engage no matter where they join from.
Teams devices improve home office and flexible workspace experiences
We are continuing to expand our portfolio of Teams displays for building out home offices and flexible workspaces in the office. Upon certification, the Yealink deskVision AIO24 with its large 24-inch display can be used as a standalone device for Teams collaboration or connected to your PC as a second screen, which will allow you to seamlessly multitask and see more content across the displays. This device is expected to be available in early 2022.
Peripherals are a great way to create a natural calling experience. Early next year, native Bluetooth capability will enter preview, allowing you to easily answer calls from your headset and use the Teams button for quick actions like joining a meeting even if your USB dongle is no where to be found. Look for updates on the first headsets to be certified for these features when we exit preview.
The built-in Teams button opens many new ways to stay engaged while on a call. Early next year you’ll be able to use the raise hand feature by holding the Teams button, making it easier for you to jump into the discussion and ensure your voice is heard.
New webinar and broadcasting capabilities in Microsoft Teams make it easy to set up and deliver professional, engaging experiences to internal and external audiences. The new capabilities include:
Microsoft Teams offers secure solutions to collaborate with external parties, and with Teams Connect we are making it even easier to work with anyone outside your organization, while giving system admins a range of controls and tools to ensure security. Teams Connect will be in public preview in the first quarter of 2022.
The hybrid workplace brings a lot of flexibility, but it can also create new challenges, like getting your personality to shine in the virtual environment, maintaining work-life balance, and being productive. These new asynchronous capabilities will be rolling out between now and early 2022.
As the world shifts to hybrid work, we need full context of the tasks at hand to stay in the flow of work. Microsoft Teams enables customers to bring their favorite apps into the flow of their work and gives developers the ability to build collaborative apps right within your digital workspace – in chat, channels, and meetings, or even bring Teams collaborative experience into other applications. Three new ways collaborative apps are surfacing include:
Dynamics 365 + Teams integration: To navigate the hybrid workplace, we need solutions that bring people, processes, and insights. New capabilities across Dynamics 365 and Teams are changing the way we work and collaborate.
Learn more about this update here.
Azure Communication Services Teams Interoperability, which allows you to extend the meetings experience into other apps and processes will be available on December 1.
Teams + Power Platform: With low-code and no-code applications from Power Platform you can create collaborative apps for your organization and seamlessly distribute them in Teams. Here are some of the newest enhancements to the Power Platform to empower anyone to create a Teams App:
Application creators will soon be able to embed Teams chat experiences into custom business applications built with Power Apps. In the coming months, this connectivity with Power Apps will allow you to bring the collaboration experience your end users use every day into your custom line of business applications.
Finally, the Power BI app for Teams is generally available to help you build a more data-driven workplace. Learn more.
Partner collaborative apps
Atlassian’s Jira Cloud is available now and makes project management and issue tracking viewable across common Teams functions like chat, channel tabs, and directly within meetings. Product ideas, feature requests and tickets can be updated right within Teams thanks to new Jira integrations.
SAP Sales & Service Core in Teams available now helps simplify hybrid sales processes, enabling you to keep your focus where it belongs -- on customers. In Teams, you can set up meetings from SAP without switching applications. When talking to customers, relevant insights and context can be seen right in Teams. All context, including meeting recordings and notes will get automatically synced back to SAP Sales Cloud in real-time.
Additionally, the redesigned Teams App Store makes finding the right app simple and streamlined. Coming later this month, you will find an updated layout and experience for finding apps in Teams. Improved categorizations, intelligent app recommendations, and curated guides and articles make it easier for users to discover and acquire apps.
Teams Phone is a powerful, end-to-end calling solution, and we are excited to share some of the new capabilities that address the full spectrum of calling, from simple 1:1 calls to business-critical scenarios like contact center operations.
SIP Gateway will become generally available this month for compatible SIP phone models, enabling core Teams calling functionality on legacy phones from Cisco, Poly, Yealink, and AudioCodes. Capabilities include inbound & outbound calls, call transfer, audio conference, dial in to meetings, device-based Do Not Disturb, and voicemail with message waiting indicators. Below are the compatible devices.
Microsoft Teams remains committed to delivering enterprise-grade security and compliance capabilities to help IT and security operations professionals more easily manage the lifecycle of content in Teams. We are excited to announce new capabilities to help better protect and govern data in Teams, available between now and the end of year:
Teams admin center search
We make it simple to navigate in the Teams admin center with the new search capability, making it much easier to find what you are looking for such as searching for a call, for a user, a team or searching option in the left navigation bar. The search will be available during December.
Priority accounts collaboration experience monitoring
Enable IT admins to specify priority users, so they can closely monitor the collaboration experiences of these users, with real-time device alerts and post-call quality metrics to help prioritize support delivery. Call quality and Teams devices alerts can be easily configured and monitored for priority accounts which are configurable in Microsoft 365 admin center today.
Admin app discovery
The new ‘Manage Apps’ page is the first stop where you can manage Teams apps and take quick actions on them.
To make it easy for you to discover the new apps from the ‘Manage App’ page, we are presenting a new interface that provides a categorial list and enables admins to browse distinct categories of apps that are sorted by popularity. In this page we also present a banner on the top, that will deliver featured app ideas which are hand-picked by Microsoft, aiming to empower with high-quality recommendations.
In the detailed page of each app, admins can get detailed information of an app and management options.
User requests for apps
Now we enable the end user to request an app that they wish to work with in Teams. When apps are blocked in the tenant, the end users were not able to discover them in Teams Client marketplace, while they are looking for tools to support their modern workplace. Admins are facing a lot of apps in the catalog, and certain processes need to be followed to enable an app in the tenant. User interest in a particular app can be a valuable insight to help prioritize the app review process.
The new user request capability acts as an indicator of the user’s interest in the app. Now the user can see an indication that the app is currently blocked and will have an option to click the “Request access” button in the client app marketplace. Each user can only request the app once, until the decision on the app is made by the admin. When the request is submitted, the admin will see the aggregate count of the request in the Manage Apps catalog in the Teams admin center and in the individual application page as an insight. Admins will also be able to manage the user request for the app.
Setup policy enhancements
Setup policies today allow admins to promote personal apps that show up in the left rail of Teams Apps in the navigation. Now we are adding the ability for admins to pin the apps that show up in the compose box. The apps that are handy while composing a message can differ from the personal apps, which is why we are bringing the ability to control these separately.
Also in addition to the options in the setup policy page, the ability to pin apps, define the order of pinned personal apps and the ability to upload custom apps for testing, we are now adding the ability to assign those policies to a distribution list or a groups.
New device types, support in device management
We are enhancing the types of devices that can be managed in the Teams Admin Center, Now we were adding the surface hub as a new type of Teams device to be managed, in the Teams Admin Center.
We are adding the SIP support gateway, that provides a basic telephony support to unlock customer legacy telephony hardware as they move to Teams. This allows you easily to connect those legacy devices you already have, to be managed as Teams devices – the devices will have similar UI as Teams native devices. This capability will be available in December 2021.
Additionally, we are exposing the manageability functionalities through Graph APIs. So, tenant administrators and Microsoft Service Partners both can build solutions, experiences, and enhancements using those APIs. They can fetch the list of devices enrolled for the tenant and use filters to get the desired set. For more granular details, there are APIs providing the device configuration, the current health, and the current activity. And in addition, exposing operations – like restart, software update, and downloading logs – which are available from the Teams admin center, can be created and tracked using these APIs.
Monitor and manage device health
To better align the device health status to be more truthful for your needs. We are enabling now to judge the severity of an issue to be different from what is automatically evaluated.
Several different factors affect the health of a Teams device, the statuses are varied from Healthy. To problematic statuses as critical, Non-Urgent, or Offline. Admin can configure the impact, of the peripherals on the health of the meeting device. The feature is already available.
Provides a new workspace view of data and analytics for all devices in a specific physical location, such as all the meeting room devices in a particular meeting room in a building. This capability provides IT admins the ability to manage connected devices, and monitor workspace health, utilization, and conformance to standards at any location.
Workspace management concept is transitioned from providing information and insights on just Teams devices to providing insights on the workspaces that Teams devices are present in. The capability will be available by the end of Feb 22.
Scoped Teams Device Administration Role
We are introducing now the scoped Team device administration role, this enables you to restrict administrative scope by using administrative units in organizations that are made up of independent divisions, For example, organizations having operations globally such in NY, Amsterdam and Bangalore. Each city has its own IT admin managing the Teams devices per location. Global admins can create Administration units for each city to ensure access only to the devices from that city. The feature will be available in December 2021.
Device analytics – dashboard
A single pane to provide a tenant level overview of multiple device related metrics such as: Inventory distribution across the locations, weekly utilization, devices to focus, etc. enriched with the ability to e filter the trends analyze data with additional drill-down for details, export and auto share the insights, offline or across Teams channels. Additionally, admin can set alerts on key metrics to be notified when attention is required.
Device management alerts
Device health change status trigger a notification to IT admin that can immediately turn into a corrective action, the device alerts can be triggered in real time and enable the admin to troubleshoot problems on the spot. Alerts also can be seen in the Teams client for a device going offline.
The device management alerts are enriched with a set of rules to flexibly managed the alerts according to prioritized devices.
The admins can send alerts in the form of a webhook which can be used to create ticket with any 3rd party ticketing system. The device management alerts will be available Q1 2022.
Rely on Microsoft expertise and operations technology with Managed Services for Teams Rooms
IT faces a lot of pressure to deploy and manage conference rooms and devices. However, not every organization has the AV expertise in-house, and even those that do will need to scale. Teams Rooms Managed Services provides organizations with Microsoft AI-powered operations, run by Microsoft experts and trusted partners, to deliver updates, security, insights, and planning. We’re enriching this service with new capabilities available by the end of the year.
A big part of room deployment is figuring out what to buy and how to orchestrate your roll-out. To meet that need, we’re introducing new planning and inventory management capabilities that allow customers to create room configuration standards with recommendations for certified devices. The templates can be used for planning purposes and exported for sharing with partners or within organizations.
The new Partner Multi-Tenant Management Portal provides partners with a combined view of customers to increase efficiencies. Customers can also delegate access to partners to customize how they authorize management of rooms, locations, devices, or all of it.
We’re also going to provide deeper insights into what is happening across your rooms through a monthly report with learnings based on applied updates, call ratings, actions performed on rooms, and more. The monthly summary is derived from a report admins can access within the portal.
Surface Hub will also be included in the Managed Services for Teams Rooms by the end of the year, providing health insights into your Surface Hub devices, with additional features including automatic ticket generation when the pen battery is low, and location information for Surface Hubs on mobile carts.
Managed Services can also now export tickets to ServiceNow, creating an automatic ticket workflow for comments, ticket state, and incident details.
Frontline Onboarding Wizard
To assist administrators in streamlining frontline worker deployments we are excited to announce a new onboarding wizard, found in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center. The onboarding wizard guides you through 3 easy steps to create the right team structure and apply the correct licenses and policy packages to get your frontline workforce up and running quickly. By aligning the right channels, apps, and settings a superior workforce interaction experience is created across the organization. The frontline onboarding wizard is available now in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center, watch it in action and learn more here.
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