Microsoft announces new updates to Teams at Ignite 2019

by Anmol
November 4, 2019

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At Ignite 2019, Microsoft has announced new updates to Microsoft Teams. The new updates are targetted at Enterprise customers who are using Teams for their organization. Microsoft announced Teams almost three years ago as a competitor to Slack.

With the updates announced at Ignite 2019, Microsoft aims to improve Teams to better position itself in the market. If you’re someone who uses Teams regularly then you can head below to check out the new updates.

  • Teams features make meetings more inclusive and flexible: Microsoft Whiteboard is now generally available in all Teams meetings, giving teams an infinite digital canvas for meeting participants to work together directly. Live captions will make meetings more accessible and easier to follow along.  Presenter and attendee controls, available this fall, will enable meeting organizers to set controls for a meeting before it takes place, ensuring that presenters have sole control over screen sharing, admitting and muting participants, and meeting recordings. Later this year, background blur will be available in Teams for iOS to minimize distractions in the background when participating in a meeting on an iPhone or iPad.
  • Teams for firstline workers updates: New capabilities in Teams will provide firstline workers with new ways to access and sign into Teams and give organizations the ability to integrate Teams with their workforce management systems. Off-shift access, available early next year, is a new setting that can be enabled by IT administrators to provide a notification to firstline workers when they access the Teams app on a personal device outside payable hours. Out-of-the-box, open-source connectors on GitHub enable customers to integrate Teams’ Shifts scheduling module with workforce management systems. These connectors are now available for JDA and will be available for Kronos early next year. New authentication capabilities in Microsoft 365 make it easy for firstline workers to sign into Teams and other Microsoft 365 apps. Firstline workers can use a mobile phone number and a one-time SMS passcode to authenticate into Teams on a personal device, while Global Sign-Out lets employees Eg out of all their apps at one time in shared-device environments, which will be available initially on Android.
  • Teams for virtual consultation scenarios across industries: Virtual Consults offers a simple way to schedule and conduct virtual consultations with Microsoft Teams, such as healthcare patient consults, customer service calls, client meetings, or job candidate interviews. During the consult, customers can take advantage of Teams meetings features such as background blur, meeting transcription and cloud recording. Attendees can easily join the virtual consultation via their web browser or mobile app. Virtual Consults is now available in private preview.
  • Teams features now allow for more ways to customize conversations and Teams experience: New features in Microsoft Teams provide more ways to customize your conversations and Teams experience. Private channels are now generally available, enabling people to create channels within their teams that can be viewed and by a specified subset of that team’s members. The Teams client for Linux will be available in public preview later this year. The multiwindow feature, expected to roll out in the first quarter of 2020, will enable you to pop out chats and meetings into a separate window.

The new Teams features announced at Ignite 2019 will be available later this year. Microsoft Teams has seen steady growth in recent years and the new features should help Microsoft gain more customers.

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