Ever since they announced the move away from Skype for Business, Microsoft has been putting all their time, energy and creativity into making Teams an exceptional solution for communication and collaboration. This Summer, we’ve already seen a host of new updates to the application, including everything from Microsoft Remote Assist to Direct Routing in public preview. Here are some of the latest updates to hit the Teams experience.
New Communication and Collaboration Features
Perhaps the biggest update for Teams this June is access to Direct Routing. In the Winter of 2017, Microsoft began offering Microsoft Calling plans which allowed a huge selection of customers from 9 different countries to start logging into the Teams experience. The Direct Routing ability allows customers to connect to Microsoft Teams in a brand-new way.
- Better access to SharePoint documents, previews, metadata, pinned items, and flows within the Teams application.
- Delegate set up for calls in Teams so that people can make and receive calls on a team leader’s behalf.
- Remote Assist with mixed reality, so you can call someone on Hololens to fix problems using unique “shared perspective” annotations.
- The ability to create teams using previous setups as templates
Third Party Apps and Processes
Microsoft now allows Teams users to create their own bespoke teams through APIs in Microsoft Graph. Using a range of APIs, you can manage Teams content in a way that suits you. Additionally, you can also control access to customised apps and distribute apps to users throughout an organisation by publishing systems to your company’s Teams app catalog. Other collaborative updates include:
- Extensions and customizations with third-party processes and apps
- Apps in chat: In the Developer Preview, you can update your app to use it in group chat and private 1:1 conversations. You can also add a chat or tab with a bot to access more immersive collaboration scenarios.
- Opportunity to search through lists of apps available for Microsoft Teams in AppSource.
New Features on Teams for iOS and Android
For the Android and iOS apps specifically designed for Microsoft Teams, there are plenty of great new updates for mobile workers to enjoy. For instance, you can join a call or meet with Teams more easily, with a new mobile meeting functionality that allows you to request for a meeting to call you back on your smartphone.
Microsoft Teams users on iOS and Android can also receive, initiate, or join 1:1 calls and schedule meetings via phone systems, VoIP, and more with team members inside and outside of the organisation. Additionally, you can share your iPad and iPhone screen, live videos, and images with other meeting attendees for better collaboration on a mobile device.
Microsoft Teams for Education
While Microsoft wants its flagship collaboration app to be appealing for a wide range of verticals, one particular sector to see an update this Summer is the Education space. The Microsoft Teams for Education service recently turned one, and the company celebrated with a host of new features, including “rubric” grading which allows teachers to add and store rubrics on assignments so that students can get feedback more easily. With rubric grading, students will be able to see how they’re going to be assessed up front, and teachers will be able to save a significant amount of time on grading.
There’s also a host of new assignment features that have been implemented to improve the grading experience too. For instance, teachers can offer personal and consistent feedback while students work on their projects, and they can share assignments with individual students, small groups, or entire classes depending on their needs. There’s also rich text editing so that you can bold, highlight, and make bulleted lists in assignment instructions.
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