Hi all, welcome back to one more article to round out our Ignite 2020 Teams Wrap Up. In this final article, we will be breaking down the new features in Teams meetings and Meeting related hardware.
- Part 1 - Admin, Collab, and Surface
- Part 2 - Teams Calling and Phones
- Part 3 - Meetings and Devices (This post)
Links to relevant Microsoft announcements and Ignite sessions can be found under each heading. Let’s get started.
New Teams Meeting Features
Meeting Lobby Options and Hard Mute
The new meeting lobby options will allow you to have Users in your organization or users in your organization and trusted organizations join the meeting, without needing to go through the lobby. Still no “Invited Users Only” feature, but it’s getting closer.
We also now have the option to Hard Mute meaning that attendees to the meeting cant unmute themselves and create havoc in a meeting. Just ask any students about trouble makers in their class.
More info: Session DB151 @4:50
New Meeting Pre-Join Experience
This feature lets users pick their correct devices, room and background before joining the meeting. Hopefully ending both the “We can’t hear you” issues because someone picked the wrong device and the horrible howling when someone joins from a meeting room.
More info: Session DB151 @7:15
New Dynamic View
This feature is an interesting one, as it allows you to have content and users at a decent size, letting you pin users you need to see during the session.
The new Reactions feature also lets users reactions pop up over their avatar instead of popping up in the chat.
More info: Session DB151 @8:38 and Session DB156 @7:00
New Codec – Satin – “This Fall” (End of 2020)
This feature was originally demonstrated back at Ignite 2019. But now we are seeing it rollout across Teams clients today.
In the demo, Microsoft simulated 300ms burst packet loss every 600ms and placed a call using Silk (Opus based) and then the new Satin codec. Showing the quality of the new codec was almost flawless despite the extreme packet loss.
Shortly after that, Microsoft then proceeded to show a high-quality call using only 7kbps of bandwidth!
Demo: Session DB151 @9:50
Live Transcription with Attribution – Available Now
This feature is adding something we have had at Ignite sessions for a while, Live transcription in meetings. As long as someone starts the recording, transcription will take place in near real-time. Allowing users hard of hearing to follow along, or like me, if you get distracted, you can quickly catch up on what was being talked about before some asked you what you thought.
Demo: Session DB151 @12:00
PowerPoint Presenter View in Teams – No Date
A new feature that does what it says on the tin. Letting the presenter view upcoming slides, their presentation notes and the attendees on one screen. No need for 3 monitors like some of us today when speaking.
Demo: Session DB151 @12:43
Custom Layouts – No Date Announced
Microsoft didn’t announce much on this one yet. But it appears to be the ability to use the AI cutout feature of Teams together mode, to allow presenters to dynamically lay themselves over their presented content.
Demo: Session DB156 @1:35
Breakout Rooms – Later this year
Something the Zoom fanatic’s love to lord over Teams fans is Breakout Rooms, These are coming to Teams soon as well. Letting you break a meeting up into smaller meeting spaces for groups to work independently on a task and come back to the larger meeting later.
Demo: Session DB156 @1:50 and @8:35
NDI for Teams / Skype TX – Available Now
Yes! No more needing to use OBS/X-Split to scrape or inject media into Teams
For those not aware. NDI is one of the many video production formats used by industry to have “Network-Aware” video streams running through a mixing desk, from cameras or piped into some other production tools for custom layouts and the like.
This is pretty common in things like television studios where a Skype call is piped into a live broadcast.
NDI is pretty user friendly too in that it uses mDNS (Bonjour) to broadcast its availability making it easy to discover endpoints rather than remembering IP addresses.
More info: Session DB138 @12:30
Teams Meeting Devices
Teams Intelligent Speakers – Epos and Yealink
These will be a range of AI-powered meeting room speakers with an array of 7 microphones. These will use voice pattern recognition allowing each user in the meeting room’s transcription to be attributed to each speaker in the room.
I reached out to Ilya Bukshteyn (Lead of Teams Devices) for clarification on the new speakers as they seemed to be the love child of the Cornetto Ice Cream cone from build 2018 and a Poly CX5500. Ilya kindly linked me to this article for more info.
The units will be limited to 10 people in a room and will require the user to have enrolled their voice in Teams for attribution to work.
More info: Session DB147 @8:35
Microsoft Teams Panels
Now I’m in familiar territory! For those that don’t know at my previous role, I did a lot of meeting room builds and I was really big deploying booking panels. As an example, we use Joan booking panels here at Purple to book and check room availability.
These are devices that you typically stick on the entrance to a meeting room that instantly show the availability of the room, allow you to book it and see when the next appointment is. Crestron has been making products like this for some time that would integrate into Exchange for your booking needs.
A cool addition to the Teams variants of these is the “Nearby Rooms” app where the display will show you what rooms nearby are available.
That’s it for Teams at Ignite 2020. Thanks for coming along with us and we hope this has been helpful.