What’s new in Microsoft Teams in July 2018.

Available today: Direct Routing in Teams

On June 28th, we announced that Phone System Direct Routing is now generally available. Direct Routing allows customers to choose their telecom provider to enable their users to make and receive calls in Teams. If your country is supported by Teams and Phone System, you can start planning and deploying Direct Routing in your organization. Direct Routing and Calling Plans are now your 2 choices for dial tone in Microsoft Teams.

Teams is coming to the US Government Community Cloud (GCC)

Teams in GCC has been built to meet the enhanced security and compliance requirements of our GCC customers allowing them to transform communication and collaboration. Roll out for the US Government Cloud Community (GCC) will begin on July 17th and will be available for all eligible customers by the end of August 2018.

Updated keyboard shortcuts

Do you love keyboard shortcuts? If so, we’ve updated our shortcuts to include new functionality. You can view keyboard shortcuts in three ways: (1) type ‘/keys’ in the command bar, (2) press Ctrl+. on Windows or Command+. on Mac or (3) visit your Settings drop down menu and click ‘keyboard shortcuts.’

View and edit Visio files within Teams

You can now view, edit, and collaborate on your Visio diagrams directly inside Microsoft Teams! Simply upload a Visio diagram to a channel’s conversation tab to share with your team. You and your colleagues can then alter the diagram from directly inside Teams and engage in conversations within the file to encourage input from all stakeholders.

Office 365 app launcher now available in Teams web client

We’ve made it easier for you to switch between some of the Office 365 core apps. Now in the Teams web client, you can expand the Office 365 app launcher (aka, “the waffle”) to use core apps such as Outlook, Word and OneDrive. Two things to note: (1) if an app has been disabled for a given user, the app will be hidden from the app launcher for them; (2) the app launcher will not show pinned applications or relevant files.

Monthly Spotlight – New Apps in Teams: Jell, RSpace, Zoho Projects and more!

We are constantly adding new apps to the Teams experience to make it an even more powerful hub for teamwork that allows you to access all services you need in one place.

Jell enables users to customize questions, reminders and recurring schedules as needed. Jell for Microsoft Teams comes with a 14-day free trial and has multiple plans to meet your organization’s needs.

RSpace provides a notebook to researchers in biology, chemistry and other related fields to record experiments, share research data and communicate efficiently within the lab.

Zoho Projects gives users the power of project management right at their fingertips. Manage and plan your projects, assign work, manage resources and collaborate better with your team.

Other new additions to the Teams store include: AttendanceBot, Bitbucket, CrewHu, Evernote, Jira Bot, Karmabot, LawBot, Lifeliqe, Ruum by SAP, SignEasy and Woobot.

Working with files and your Teams bot (Preview)

At Build 2018, we announced that bots will soon be able to send and receive files and this feature is now here. If you have a Teams app that works with files, it’s time to switch to Public Developer Preview and check it out.

Work with Confidence: New features for IT Admins

Teams now supports eDiscovery for callings and meetings
eDiscovery for callings and meetings will enable complians admins, who are used to performing eDiscovery searches for Teams messages, the ability to search and discover summary records for every Teams meeting or call in their tenant.

Teams supports eDiscovery for users in an exchange hybrid environment
Teams now supports eDiscovery, Compliance Content Search, Review and Export for users in organizations that are in an exchange hybrid setup. FYI, this feature is not publicly available but supported for customers on request through Microsoft support.

Hide teams from Outlook

Based on customer feedback, new Office 365 Groups generated as a result of creating a team in Microsoft Teams will no longer show in Outlook by default. Since these groups are predominantly used in Teams, this change will reduce clutter by removing the entries from the Global Address Book. These groups will also be hidden from the Outlook left hand navigation and will not resolve in the ‘To:’ line when authoring email. Groups created through Outlook, and then later enabled for Teams, will continue to show in both Outlook and Teams. If you want to create a team in Teams and want to show the associated group in Outlook, then you can run the Set-UnifiedGroup Exchange Online PowerShell cmdlet to update the -HiddenFromExchangeClientsEnabled parameter (this will enable the group for the Outlook experience).

Archive your team for posterity

Need to put a team into storage? If you’ve got an inactive team, but you want to keep it for reference or reactivate it in the future, try the new archive and restore feature. The conversations and files in a team become read-only once you archive it. You’ll still be able to search through the team—you can even mark the team as a favorite. FYI, only team owners can archive and restore teams.

New features available for mobile

Improved message sending reliability in flaky networks

You can always view your messages on Teams, even if you’re offline in a subway, tunnel or a flight. We have now improved our message sending reliability so that you can confidently send messages even when you are offline, or in a flaky network, for example in elevators, and Teams will make sure your message gets sent as soon as your phone regains network connectivity.

Network & battery optimization in calls and meetings

There are a few intelligent features for network and battery optimization that help improve your overall calling and meeting experiences with the Teams mobile client.

  • Bandwidth Optimization –  If you’re participating in a meeting and happen to cross a poor internet network, the Teams app gives you the option to (1) ‘Call me back’ at a number you’ve set or (2) re-join via a phone call.   Additionally, Teams will prompt with you with the option to switch from video to audio – giving you continued, high performance audio quality
  • Battery Optimization – Teams proactively monitors your battery life and gives you options to reduce the consumption of your battery.  During a meeting Teams will prompt you to switch from video to audio mode and also provides you the option of turning off all incoming video from others.

Experience Teams across devices

Teams for Surface Hub Preview now available

You can now use Microsoft Teams for Surface Hub (Preview). Microsoft Teams for Surface Hub has full Teams calling and meeting capabilities, including one-touch join and up to four incoming video streams—all with side-by-side compatibility with Skype for Business. FYI, to access Teams for Surface Hub (Preview), your device must be enrolled in the Windows Insider Program.

Still using Teams on the web? Get the app!

Never miss a notification. From our Teams web client, you can now download the Teams app for your device. Check out the lower left-hand corner of the Teams web client for the ‘Get app’ button.

Teamwork devices make a premiere at InfoComm

With Teams, we’re bringing intelligent communications to a range of devices to meet your needs—whether you’re in your office or on the go. Some of our latest offerings include:

  • Teams-enabled desk phones slated for later this year.  Desk phones from AudioCodes and Yealink will offer rich features to enhance the Teams experience.
  • Skype Room Systems to support Teams meetings by the end of June, across all our partners: Logitech, Crestron, Polycom, Lenovo, and HP.
  • Polycom and Yealink will bring native Teams-enabled conference phones to market later this year.

Remote Assist with Microsoft Teams and Hololens

Remote Assist is a mixed-reality experience that lets you do two-way calling between the Teams desktop app and a Hololens. This works from the Teams desktop app on Windows 10, once you have the Remote Assist app installed. When using Remote Assist in Teams, you’ll be able to see the Hololens user’s point of view. And, you’ll be able to make annotations in their world–place arrows, draw lines, and share images–right from Teams.