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Microsoft announces new & exciting features in Teams

Recently Microsoft introduced a set of new and exciting features in Teams that will elevate the user experience for meetings. These are a new meeting experience for MS Teams users, Large gallery, Together view, and Focus Mode. To experience these, users need to enable them from the settings. Let’s see how to enable the new experience on your Team’s client and explore the new features.

New Meeting Experience

Responding to the competition with virtual meetings during this pandemic, Microsoft has been quick enough to launch a new meeting experience recently. After turning on the new experience and restarting Teams, the biggest thing you’ll probably notice is that any calls and meetings will pop out into their window, separate from the main Teams window.

To Turn on this feature follow these steps.

1. Click on your profile picture from the top right of the Teams.

2. Click on the ‘Settings’

3. Tick mark the checkbox for ‘Turn on new meeting experience’ and restart Teams.

4. To restart, right-click the Teams icon in the taskbar, then select Quit.

5. Reopen Teams.

6. Now, when you call someone or join a meeting you will see that it will pop-outs in their window, separate from the main Teams window (as shown in the below image).

Note: If your call and meeting still open in the same window then click the profile pic again and check for the Teams update, once it is done quit and restart the Teams again.

On the separate meeting window, you must have noticed that the meeting controls are now moved to the top and fixed, so now you can easily access them and now they will not appear on the video and the content being shared.

With this update, there are few more things are added to the meeting controls.

Large Gallery

A few days back, Microsoft announced that the video gallery will soon be increased from 9 (3*3) to 49 (7*7) and now they made it live. In the meeting controls, you can see an option to select the large gallery.  So, if more than 10 participants are sharing the video in your meeting the large gallery option will be enabled. To choose a large gallery go to ‘More Options (…)’ in the meeting controls and select a large gallery.

Here how it looks like.

Up to 20,000 participants

Microsoft limits the size of interactive meetings to 1,000 participants, with a seamless shift to a ‘view only’ mode after the limit is met, for up to 20,000 participants.

Together View

There is always some fun needed when you work in Teams and as everyone is working from home nowadays. Employees miss that fun which they used to have when doing a meeting in the same room. Together view is kind of a fun element introduced to Teams by Microsoft. It lets you feel like you’re in the same shared space with everyone in the meeting. Microsoft is using AI to segment your face and shoulders and place you and your co-workers together in a virtual space.

Pic Credit

Focus mode

Usually, during our meetings, our focus needs to be on the content being shared on the screen but many of us get distracted by the video feeds and other things on the screen. To get rid of it Microsoft has introduced Focus mode. Focus mode is available when content is shared.  It hides the video feeds and other things from the screen and focuses only on the content shared.

It’s available in the meeting controls under More options (…) > Focus mode.

Final thoughts

With these amazing features in place, companies are sure to come forward and handle all calls through Teams. The range is quite big. From 1000 participants to 20,000 people.

And this is not all. To give a more detailed and engaging experience to its users, Microsoft is geared up with several new features like adding live transcripts, ability to translate live captions into subtitles so anyone can follow a meeting that’s being held in another language, Cortana integration is even arriving in the mobile version of the app soon. We are sure, this is not all for Teams!

So, stay tuned for more updates on it soon!