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With COVID-19 (coronavirus) continuing to impact people around the world, teams and schools everywhere are moving to remote work and distance learning. This has resulted in increased usage of communication tools like Microsoft Teams, Slack, Zoom, Hangouts and others. Recently, Microsoft shared that they saw a 500 percent increase in usage of Teams meetings, calling, and conferences in China. They also saw a 200 percent increase in Teams usage on mobile devices.
To celebrate the third anniversary of Microsoft Teams, Microsoft is announcing several new features that will improve the remote working experience. Below, you can find the list of new things Microsoft is announcing today.
- We’ve all been in a remote meeting when a participant is loudly typing on their keyboard, or someone is sitting near a vacuum running in the background. Real-time noise suppression minimizes distracting background noise, allowing you to hear what’s being said.
- In large meetings, it can sometimes be difficult for remote participants to chime in when they have something to say. The raise hand feature lets anyone in the meeting send a visual signal that they have something to say.
- Industrial workers need to communicate and collaborate effectively while staying safe. Through a new integration between Microsoft Teams and RealWear head-mounted devices, Firstline workers will be able to access information and communicate hands-free with remote experts from their job site.
- Conducting B2C virtual consultations is a common requirement for situations like healthcare patient consults, client meetings, or job candidate interviews. Announced earlier this month, the Bookings app in Teams makes it easy to schedule, manage and conduct virtual appointments.
- Teams will soon enable you to pop out chats into a separate window to help you streamline your workflow and move more easily between ongoing conversations.
- Offline and low-bandwidth support lets you read chat messages and write responses, even without an internet connection, making it easier for you to move things forward no matter where you are.
- We are also expanding the Teams devices ecosystem, with new devices certified for Teams. The Yealink VC210, now generally available, is the first collaboration bar certified for Teams, and brings together speakers, microphone, camera and the Teams app to deliver a meeting experience for smaller conference rooms that is simple to install and easy to manage. In addition, the Bose Noise Cancelling headphone 700 UC available for purchase in late spring.
- We’re pleased to introduce Microsoft 365 Business Voice in the U.S., a new offering for smalland-midsized businesses that makes Microsoft Teams a complete phone system, as well as a new Microsoft 365 Enterprise plan line up that will include additional licensing options for Firstline Workers.
These features will be coming to all users in the coming months.