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Microsoft Teams now reaches 75 million active users daily—the remote workforce isn’t the only thing that’s growing. The leading collaboration platform is constantly adding new features to fuel productivity and make every Teams interaction make an impact.

Recently, we covered 5 Things You Didn’t Know You Can Do in Microsoft Teams. In this blog, we’re diving into the latest Teams capabilities added over the last month and how they help.

“Teams now has more than 75 million daily active users, engaging in rich forms of communication and collaboration, and two thirds of them shared, collaborated, or interacted with files on Teams.”

— Satya Nadella, VentureBeat

Here are seven of the newest features in Microsoft Teams:

1. Express yourself.

Yes, custom backgrounds have arrived, and yes, they’re everything you thought they would be. Last week, Microsoft made it official—so you can tap into those free Star Wars backgrounds you bookmarked a few weeks ago. Custom backgrounds bring your remote meetings to life.

However, there is one caveat, avoid custom backgrounds when you want to protect sensitive information. Microsoft explains that using the blurring effect or custom backgrounds may not prevent sensitive info from being exposed.

And, if you’re wanting to let your custom background flag fly, make sure you’re putting the meeting on the books. Because at least for now, you can only toggle your custom backgrounds, like that one family vacation photo, on a scheduled Microsoft Teams meeting.

Here’s how:

  1. On your video call, select the More actions button (the ellipses).
  2. Select Show background effects.
  3. Scroll to select the image you’ve uploaded.
  4. Select Preview to preview how your background will look (optional).

2. Go big.

The more the merrier, right? (Exactly.) Now you can have up to 250 users on your Microsoft Teams chats. That means keeping multiple teams connected outside of their inbox just got easier.

And just recently Microsoft expanded capabilities for the number of team members who can join a Teams call—now up to 10,000.

3. Meet safely.

Microsoft Teams has increased privacy for Teams meeting participants who are dialing into meetings. Now, Microsoft Teams hides your phone number from any meeting attendees invited from outside of your organization while still allowing members of your business to see it.

4. Tweak away.

Now you can access more options when you send out your online meeting invite. Open your event and at the top of the event select Meeting options. The Meeting Options tab opens in your web browser where you can update meeting settings like who your presenters are and who can bypass the lobby.

5. Multi-task more.

Trying to multi-task? Now, you can navigate Teams while working in multiple chat conversations at the same time! Double-click a chat in your chat list, or select Pop out chat icon in Teams  to open a chat in a secondary window to chat while you work.

6. Hands up.

Tired of those awkward interruptions? Now team members can use the Raise Hand feature to ask a question or make a comment without talking over the current meeting presenter. Raising your “hand” is easy.

While in a meeting, select the Raise your hand  from your control bar. This lets the rest of attendees know that you’d like to join the dialogue with a gold hand icon on your video feed.

Button to raise your hand

7. Take attendance.

Ready for a roll call? Now meeting organizers can take attendance during a meeting down to arrival times.

To get your attendance report, select Show participants  Show participants icon  > Download attendee list. The report will download a CSV file that can be opened in Excel. The file will contain the name, join time, and leave time of meeting attendees.

And that’s not all, there are more new features coming soon! Including a 7×7 background so you can use Microsoft Teams to video conference with up to 49 attendees at a time. That feature update is set to premiere at the end of this month.

More attendees on teams video chat

Need more help with Microsoft Teams?

Let’s talk.

Our Microsoft Teams experts are here to make sure your team is getting the most out of your Teams experience. That’s why we offer different Microsoft Teams training programs for your unique business goals.

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