Welcome to the first in our series of monthly Microsoft updates, rounding up everything Microsoft have recently announced and the new features we’ve got to look forward to. This month, we’re focusing on the announcement of the Windows 11 OS and new Microsoft Teams features. 

What to expect from Windows 11

Microsoft gave the world a very first look at the new Windows 11 OS towards the end of last month, promising a “calm and creative space where you can pursue your passions through a fresh experience.” 

Here is what we can expect from the new system, which is likely to be released later in 2021. 

Seamless integration with Teams

Microsoft Teams will be much more deeply integrated into Windows 11 update, making it easier to connect with people all over the world; no matter where they are or what device they’re on.  

The Microsoft Teams app will get prominent placement on the Windows 11 start menu, with the ability to mute or unmute yourself directly from the taskbar. The Microsoft Teams Chat feature will also be integrated into the taskbar, offering instant text, chat, voice or video with all of your personal contacts. This will be available across all platforms, devices, and operating systems. 

“We don’t want the device or platform you’re on to be a barrier,” said Microsoft, in their Windows 11 announcement blog.  

Windows 11 look and feel

You can expect a much ‘cleaner’ and modern look and feel from Windows 11, with one of the biggest changes coming to the taskbar. In a move similar to what we are familiar with in iOS, Microsoft has moved the taskbar to the centre of the screen. 

You’ll also find rounded corners throughout the Windows 11 system; in menus, apps, File Explorer and the Start menu. 

We can also expect this rather satisfying new start up sound.

The new Andriod apps store

Another exciting and surprising Windows 11 announcement is thebuilt-in support that is coming for Android apps, allowing users to run their favourite Android apps through their PC.  

Microsoft are using Amazon’s Appstore to allow Android apps to be download from the Windows Store in Windows 11; downloaded apps will be able to be pinned to the taskbar.  

What is coming to Microsoft Teams?

Along with all of these exciting Windows 11 announcements of things to look forward to, there have also been some pretty great new features announced for Microsoft Teams over the last month, which users are already able to use and enjoy.  

New approvals templates

The approvals features within Microsoft Teams enables everyone in your organisation to easily create, manage and share approvals, directly within Teams.  

To streamline workflows, there are now approvals templates that provide a structure for common approvals, like requesting business cards, requesting annual leave or raising purchase orders. You can also create your own templates from scratch, defining the scope of the approvals template – is it intended for everyone in the organisation, a specific team members or specific set of people? 

This then allows users to request approval in a much simpler way, eliminating the risk of missing out any crucial information and getting into a back and forth with managers. 

Creating tasks directly from chats

You can now create tasks directly from chats in Teams, helping you to quickly capture informal tasks “the moment they happen” on both desktop and web.  

This feature is something we’re pretty excited about at #TeamHable:  

“This is a fantastic update,” says Paul Dredge, our Senior Technical Consultant. “For me, its going to be life changing, really helping with my productivity.” 

 “About time!” Says Senior Learning Consultant Lisa Clark. “This is a real game changer.”  

This feature is available now on desktop and web, and is super easy to try out. Just hover over the message, select the 3 dots then select more actions, and create task. 

Screenshot showing new Microsoft Teams Feature - Create tasks from chats

Updates to Teams meetings

There have been several updates to Teams this month, which have added even more capabilities to meetings and helped enhance them. 

Meetings organisers can now lower all raised hands, which is a helpful little feature for when associated questions have already been solved. As well, organisers and presenters can now spotlight up to 7 participants during Teams meetings, where previously, just one participant could be spotlighted for all attendees. 

But the feature we’ve been most excited about at #TeamHable – because we’re into analytics and data – is the Attendance Dashboard. Following on from a meeting, the organiser can now view a really useful attendance report, that provides various insights into how the meeting went. You can see many registered vs. attended, the names of those who attended the meeting, and whether they engaged for all or just part of the meeting.  

This is especially useful for wider scale webinars, for example

Getting more out of your Microsoft 365 package 

Along with these exciting updates, the experts at Hable are full of knowledge, tips and tricks on making the most out of Microsoft 365 and reaching your full potential.

Get in touch with a member of the team today if you’d like a chat!