Exciting New Teams Features Microsoft Recently Announced

Microsoft Teams has been one of the “stars” of the pandemic. This cloud collaboration platform saw an increase in users of 475% between November 2019 and October 2020.

One of the major features of Teams is its video conferencing capability. The platform also has multiple collaborative business features and native integration with Microsoft 365 applications.

Businesses use MS Teams for:

  • Secure team messaging
  • Company Wiki
  • As a virtual work hub with centralized communications
  • Video and audio conferencing
  • VoIP phone system (with Business Voice add-on)
  • Secure file sharing
  • Real-time collaboration
  • And much more

Since video conferencing has been the main way that people have stayed connected during the pandemic, that capability is a big driver for the large increase in Teams users over the last year. In order to keep its edge and continue to compete with other conferencing tools (like Zoom and Cisco WebEx), Microsoft recently announced several Teams upgrades to make the video conferencing and virtual presentation experience even better.

These New Features Might Win You Over to Using Teams

The Microsoft Ignite event was held March 2-4, 2021. That is when Microsoft announced several exciting feature upgrades for MS Teams. Some of these are in public preview and others are “coming soon.” All of them are designed to boost your video conferencing experience.

See Everything More Clearly with Dynamic View

It can be challenging trying to keep everything comprehensively showing on your screen during a video conference call. Inevitably, someone is seeing just the speaker while others can see everyone simply because they know how to enable a “gallery” view.

Microsoft is alleviating some of that confusion with Dynamic view. This is a feature that will intelligently arrange all of the elements on the screen in a way that makes sense and is auto-adjusted to a person’s personal layout. This helps keep everyone experiencing the meeting in the same way so no one is missing out on anything.

Dynamic View in Teams (all Teams images are from

Provide More Interaction with PowerPoint Live in Teams

When someone is sharing a presentation document over a video call, usually the only thing the other attendees can do is view it as the presenter is paging through. They don’t have any control to go back to a page if they want to learn a little more about a certain point.

That is changing with PowerPoint Live in Teams. This feature is designed to make a PowerPoint presentation more accessible to those viewing it. It allows meeting attendees to privately navigate through the presentation slides at their own pace and access a high-contrast option for easier viewing.

Presenter Mode Gives You More Control Over Your Display

When giving a presentation or training over a virtual call, presenters don’t always have a way to ensure a consistent or fluid viewing experience for everyone. Their video image will usually appear in a small box and the main presentation will take up most of the screen.

Presenter Mode in Teams provides more control over how your video feed looks in relation to your presentation. It also provides a more professional-looking experience than you typically see when viewing someone’s screen on a video call.

You have three options to choose from:

  • Standout: Your video image is overlaid in front of your content.
  • Side-by-side: Your video is next to your presentation.
  • Reporter: Your video image is larger and your presentation is over your shoulder.

Control Your Meeting View with View Switcher

To personalize the Teams experience, Microsoft is adding a view switcher that will allow meeting participants to choose the view that they prefer. For example, if they want a more interactive and less distracting view, they can choose Together mode. They can also use Focus to hide all video feeds and see only the shared content.

More control means less frustration when it comes to interaction in the many video meetings that people attend. The options that view switcher provides are:

  • Gallery
  • Larger gallery
  • Together mode
  • Gallery on top
  • Focus
  • Fullscreen

Interact Without Disrupting with Live Reactions

One big difference between in-person presentations and video presentations is that when everyone is in the same room, the presenter can instantly get feedback. People can engage with a smile or applause and there is more of a collaborative feeling.

When everyone is on mute, presenters giving an online presentation can feel completely alone and not know how a certain point is landing with their audience.

Live Reactions is designed to help bridge that gap by giving participants a way to react via emojis that will not disrupt the presentation but will still give feedback to the presenter.

The emojis float up and then disappear. This feature improves interaction and engagement during a video presentation and helps the speaker and viewers feel connected which will keep your entire team more engaged.

Get Expert Help Setting Up Team Collaboration

Sound Computers can help your Connecticut business keep your team connected and productive through smart collaboration tools.

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Call 860-577-8060 or reach us online.

April 27, 2021
Sound Computers Admin