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Microsoft 365 New Features

[updated October 12, 2021] Microsoft 365 products and services are continuously being improved and updated. This page provides an overview of the latest, noteworthy product features.

Microsoft 365 Resources

MS Teams Resources

Training Videos from LinkedIn Learning

Several video tutorials regarding MS Teams are available from LinkedIn Learning. Follow the instructions below to access the courses:

  1. Go to https://linkedin.sheridancollege.ca/
  2. You will be directed to Sheridan's single sign-on page. Enter your Sheridan credentials. You will return to LinkedIn Learning.
  3. Use the search field at the top of the page to find learning resources (e.g. Microsoft Teams; Microsoft 365)

 

Microsoft Bookings

New Bookings Features

September 23, 2021

Toggle to tryout the new Bookings Experience

Microsoft Bookings is getting a new experience and users can start accessing the preview with a toggle on the top right that says Try the new Bookings. Once this toggle is turned on, users can see and try the new experience. 

Microsoft Lists

New Lists Features

September 23, 2021

Sharing Links for Microsoft Lists

This release will allow users to share Microsoft Lists using the same sharing links that you have been using for files and folders in OneDrive and SharePoint Online.

@Mention People in Comments

You’ll now be able to “mention” people you work with while adding a new comment to a list Item. This will help people share and collaborate on list items. 

Microsoft Office apps (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)

New Office app Features

October 12, 2021

Modern comments in Word and PowerPoint

Modern comments provides a consistent commenting experience across Word and PowerPoint. Users can respond to comments directly from an email notification. The new design provides a focused view of comments as well as an optional all comments view via the Comments pane.
UI: showing comments feature in Office apps

Microsoft OneDrive

New OneDrive Features

October 12, 2021

"Shared with" List Now Visible on all OneDrive Files

The "Shared with" list of people will give you an at-a glance view of everyone you’ve given access to a file. This change should make it easier to know who has access and how many people have access to your files.

Clicking on the "Shared With" list will lead you to the Manage Access view. Sending a file via the Share Dialog should also return a visual confirmation of who you've just sent it to.
UI: onedrive shared with feature

September 23, 2021

Immersive Reader Launcher in OneDrive Online

This new feature release will allow users to open Word Documents and text files into the Immersive Reader directly from the OneDrive Online menu.
user interface: onedrive immersive reader launcher

Microsoft Outlook

New Outlook Features

September 23, 2021

Pinning on Outlook for iOS and Android

Outlook for iOS and Android now supports the ability to pin conversations and view pinned conversations. Users can pin or unpin conversations either through swipe actions in the message list or through mail actions by tapping in the top right corner of the reading pane. 

Sharepoint Online

New Sharepoint Online Features

September 23, 2021

Edit SharePoint Pages or News Posts in Microsoft Teams

This feature will allow users to edit modern SharePoint pages or news posts within Teams experience. Users can now pin a Page or News Post to a Teams channel and make edits without leaving Teams.

Immersive Reader for SharePoint pages and news posts

The Microsoft Immersive Reader, currently built into Word, OneNote, Outlook, Teams and other Microsoft apps, is now available for SharePoint pages and news posts. Immersive Reader features everything from a Read Aloud function and grammar options to adjustable reading and text preferences.
user interface: sharepoint immersive reader button

Microsoft Teams

New Teams Features

October 12, 2021

Create tasks from Teams chats or channel posts

This feature will allow users to create Tasks from Teams chats or channel posts and enable them to identify tasks that arise naturally in Teams.

  1. Left-click on the "" More options menu of the chat bubble or conversation
  2. Select More actions from the drop-down menu
  3. Select Create task

UI: create task from Teams chat

Annotations in PowerPoint Live in Teams

This new release will allow users to use a virtual laser pointer and make annotations when presenting through PowerPoint Live in Teams. PowerPoint Live allows users to highlight and markup presentation materials so the audience can easily follow along. This is rolling out on Microsoft Teams desktop, web and Mac.
Sceen image show Powerpoint annotations in Teams

Headspace mindfulness content in Microsoft Viva Insights

The Viva Insights app in Teams will introduce a curated set of guided meditations and focus music from Headspace to enable users to disconnect from work in the evening, relax their mind before a big meeting, or find focus before starting an important project.

A Headspace meditation to mindfully wrap up the day will also be integrated into the virtual commute. In just a few minutes a day, meditation and mindfulness with Headspace can help users lower stress, increase focus and ease teamwork.
Sreenshot of Viva Insights apps in Teams highlighting Headspace

Chat Bubbles in Teams Meetings

Chat has become a lively space for conversation and idea-sharing and offers an option for people to participate in the discussion without having to jump in verbally. But it can be challenging to pay attention to video feeds, presentations, and chats all at the same time. With chat bubbles, meeting participants can follow chat on the main screen of a meeting. This is on by default but users have the option to hide Chat Bubbles during a meeting.

New default settings when opening Office files

This new feature allows users to specify a file opening preference for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files that are shared in Teams. Users can select from Teams, Desktop app, or Browser.

Presenter Modes in Teams Meeting using PowerPoint Live

Meeting participants tend to be more focused and have a better experience when they see a presenter along with a presentation. An interactive presenter also helps guide an audience along with visual cues while reducing information overload. 

New Standout, Side-by-side, and Reporter, Presenter Modes in Teams put you alongside your Teams Meeting presentation, giving meeting attendees a more engaging and focused meeting experience. Learn more about Presenter Mode.

Standout Side-by-side Reporter

September 23, 2021

Correct Answer choice in Teams Meeting Form Polls

This new feature introduces Correct Answer choices to Polls within Teams. This update makes poll creation fluid, giving presenters greater control of their meeting experience.

Teams Meeting Organizers Can Lock Their Meetings

Within the desktop app in-meeting experience, organizers can choose to lock their meetings to prevent subsequent unwanted join attempts. Users attempting to join a locked meeting from web, desktop, mobile, and other devices will not be able to do so.
Graphical user interface, application  Description automatically generated

Lower All Raised Hands During Meeting

Meeting organizers and presenters can now lower all raised hands during a Teams Meeting.
Graphical user interface, text, application  Description automatically generated

Present to Teams Meeting from PowerPoint

Clicking the "Present in Teams" button under the “Slide Show” tab in PowerPoint on will be the only step you need to take to present your PowerPoint to a Teams Meeting.

Send Teams Notifications to the macOS Native Notification System

Mac users can now choose their preferred means of Teams notifications delivery, either via the Teams built-in notification system or via their native macOS notification system.
Graphical user interface, text, application  Description automatically generated

Spotlight Up To 7 Meeting Participants

This release of Multiple spotlights in Teams meetings will allow organizers and presenters to spotlight up to 7 participants simultaneously for everyone to see during Teams meetings.
Graphical user interface, application, Teams  Description automatically generated

Translate PowerPoint Live Slides During a Teams Meeting

This new slide translation feature in the Teams desktop app will enable all meeting attendees to translate presentation content, presented via PowerPoint Live in a Teams meeting, into a language of their choice while in private view.

June 22, 2021

Schedule a Teams Meeting with Registration Options

The meeting registration feature in Microsoft Teams allows meeting organizers to easily create a custom web-based meeting registration page that can be used to:

  • allow participants to register for the Teams meeting
  • track who has registered for the meeting
  • view a post-meeting dashboard to see who attended and for how long

See How to Set-up a Teams Meeting with Registration for complete details.

Additional info is also available on on the Microsoft website. See Schedule a Teams meeting with registration support.

Meeting Participant Search

From the search box in the participants roster, users can now search for meeting participants. They can also to search for participants outside the meeting and request them to join the meeting.
participant search example

Updated In-Meeting Sharing Experience

The user interface for the in-meeting ‘Share’ feature in Microsoft Teams has been redesigned to help presenters find their desired content more quickly and easily.
share content window

Prevent Mic and/or Camera Use for All Meeting Attendees 

By default, meeting attendees can turn their camera and mic on during a meeting. But there are three ways in which a meeting organizer or presenter can modify these settings.

  1. The meeting organizer can disable the mic and/or camera settings for all attendees prior to the meeting in the Meeting Options menu.
  2. During the meeting, a meeting organizer or a presenter can modify these settings to allow all attendees to activate their mic and/or camera.
  3. During the meeting a meeting organizer or a presenter can allow individual attendees to activate their mic and/or camera.

camera/mic meeting controls

Create Tasks from Team Chats or Channel Posts

Quickly create tasks right from any Microsoft Teams chat or channel conversation without having to switch apps or windows. Select a Teams message and choose More options > More actions > Create Task. You can now track your task in the Tasks app in Teams.
example of creating task from Teams message

Meeting Options Prompt for Large Teams Meetings in Outlook for Windows

Outlook for Windows users will be prompted to set meeting options when organizing Teams meetings for 40 or more participants.
Outlook large meeting prompt
Outook: Teams large meeting options

April 12, 2021

History Menu

You can now use navigational buttons or hotkeys to navigate back to places in Teams that you have been recently using the History Menu.

Touch Bar Meetings Controls for Mac

Users with MacBooks that have Touch Bars can now access Teams meeting controls including: Show Participants; Show Conversation; Raise Hand; Toggle Video; Mute/Unmute Audio; Share Content; or Leave the meeting.
macOS Teams touch bar 

Live Transcriptions with Speaker Attributions

Live transcription is a written record of the spoken text that occurs during a meeting. It identifies each speaker, is captured automatically in near real time, and is available during and after the meeting.

Share a "Meet Now" Meeting Link

When you need to create an impromptu meeting and don't want the hassle of inviting each person to the meeting, copy the Meet Now meeting link and share it with your meeting invitees.

February 19, 2021

Channel Meeting Calendar

Guest access allows teams in Sheridan to collaborate with people outside of the organization by granting them access to existing teams and channels in Teams. Anyone with a business or consumer email account, such as Outlook or Gmail, can participate as a guest in Teams with full access to team chats, meetings, and files.
See Teams Channel Calendar App Makes Channel Meetings Easier to Access for more info.

Add a SharePoint Page, List, or Document Library to a Teams Channel

Team members can now use the SharePoint tab experience to pin any page, news, list or document library as a separate tab in their Teams channel.

  1. Select the "+" button from any channel in Teams
  2. Select SharePoint and start pinning resources 

Live Captions in 1:1 or Group Teams Calls

Live Captions display the text version of the audio in the call. This can be enabled via the control bar within the Call window. 

Meeting Chat Moderation

Meeting organizers can now turn off the chat functionality during a meeting, which is turned on by default.

January 11, 2021

Breakout rooms allow meeting organizers to divide and move meeting participants into smaller private meetings to facilitate activities such as discussions and brainstorming sessions.  

Getting Started with Breakout Rooms in Microsoft Teams

No additional installations are required to start using the Breakout Rooms in Teams. Please note the following:

  • You must have the new meeting experience enabled in your Teams Desktop Client.
  • Only the creator or ‘Organizer’ role of a Microsoft Teams meeting will be able to see and create Breakout Rooms for their meeting. 
  • The creation of Breakout Rooms during a meeting can only be initiated from the Windows or macOS version of the Microsoft Teams desktop software. You cannot create Breakout Rooms from the Teams Web App or Teams Mobile App at this time
  • If you setup a Teams meeting invitation on-behalf of someone else because you have delegate rights to their Outlook calendar, you will not be considered as the meeting Organizer and, consequently, will not have the ability to create or control the Breakout Rooms during that meeting.  

Breakout Room FAQs

Who can use Breakout Rooms in Teams? 

All staff, faculty, and students* who have been assigned a Microsoft Teams license.

*Only approved students in FAST and FAAD that are participating in the M365 Virtual Classroom Pilot Project have been assigned a Microsoft Teams license at Sheridan. 

Why would I want to use Breakout Rooms in Teams? 

  • Setting up breakout rooms during your Teams meetings allows for smaller group discussions, collaboration, and activities as part of a larger meeting.
  • Studies show that attendees of large meetings feel more comfortable engaging in discussions with a smaller group of people in a breakout room than in a large group of people. 
  • The small group aspect also allows learners to have some wait time before speaking; they are able to process and gather thoughts without feeling rushed or pressured. 

How many Breakout Rooms can I create during my Meeting? 

You can create up to 50 breakout rooms.  

Can I allow my meeting attendees to choose which Breakout Room they want to join? 

No. Unfortunately at this time that option is not available to the meeting participants. The meeting organizer can only automatically assign or manually assign which rooms participants will go into.  

Can I reassign a user from one Breakout Room into another one? 

Yes, as the meeting organizer you can view all participants in all rooms and then reassign any individuals into other rooms.  

If a meeting participant joins the meeting late, can I still assign them to a Breakout Room? 

Yes, the meeting organizer has the option to manually assign any meeting participants to a breakout room.  

Why don't I see the Breakout Room icon in my Teams meeting? 

  • You may not be the meeting organizer for that Teams Meeting 
  • You are the meeting organizer but you are using the Teams Web app and not the Teams Desktop app 
  • You are the meeting organizer but may need to try signing out of your Microsoft Teams desktop app and then sign back in 
  • You are the meeting organizer but may need to quit and restart your Microsoft Teams app 

Additional Resources

December 11, 2020

Use the Tasks app in Teams 

The Tasks app in Microsoft Teams brings together your individual tasks from To Do and Outlook with your team tasks from Planner so you can more efficiently cross them off your lists.

Pinned Posts 

Keep important information easily accessible and top of mind. Users can pin any message in a channel to the channel information pane for all members of the channel to see. 

New File Sharing Experience in Teams 

A new feature added to Microsoft 365 brings a consistent file sharing experience across services like OneDrive, SharePoint, Outlook, and now Teams.

AI Based Noise Suppression 

When your mic is turned on in a Teams meeting or call, background noise around you can distract others. Teams now offers three levels of noise suppression to help keep meeting participants focused. 

Hard Mute in Teams Meetings 

This feature gives meeting organizers the ability to mute one to many meeting participants while removing the muted participants' ability to unmute themselves. 
Meeting options pane showing 'Allow attendees to unmute' option

Spotlight an Individual in a Teams Meeting 

Meeting presenters now have the ability to lock on to an individual video feed for all attendees to see during a Teams meeting. Once selected, the individual identified as the spotlight will be the main video shown to all participants.

October 15, 2020

Use the Tasks app in Teams

The Tasks app in MS Teams brings together your individual tasks from To Do and Outlook with your team tasks from Planner so you can more efficiently cross them off your lists. More details are available from Microsoft’s Teams support pages via the links below:

‘Suggested Replies’ now on Android Teams Mobile app

Suggested Replies functionality offers an option of three different responses for a user to choose from for select messages. Users can quickly reply to a given message by tapping on one of the suggested replies.
sample of Teams chat window in Android mobile app showing suggested reply options

Meeting experience improved for Safari users

Improvements have been made to the browser-based meetings experience for those who join meetings with the Safari browser. Users can now use their device to speak and listen and will no longer be required to dial into the meeting for audio. As was the case previously, participants can still view meeting content being shared in the browser.

April - July, 2020

"Only Me" can bypass lobby - Teams Meeting Option (introduced July 2020)

Once enabled, only the organizer will be able to join the meeting directly. Everyone else, including people from within the same organization, will be sent to the lobby. Learn more new window icon

New Teams Meeting Experience (introduced July 2020)

Multi-window experiences have come to Teams meetings and calling. Users now have the ability to pop out meetings and calls into separate windows to help them optimize their workflow. Learn more new window icon

Visio as a tab in Microsoft Teams (introduced July 2020)

To make collaborating on Visio diagrams within Teams an even better experience, Visio as a tab helps you easily access and manage the Visio files you need or interact with the most, allowing team members to access services and content in a dedicated space within a channel or a chat. Learn more new window icon

Meeting Attendee Limit Increased from 250 to 300 (introduced June 2020)

To help customers meet rapidly changing communication and meeting needs, Microsoft has increased the maximum number of participants allowed in a Teams meeting from 250 to 300. Learn more new window icon

Contextual Search (introduced June 2020)

Find information faster with contextual search in Microsoft Teams. Users now have the ability to search for content in a specific channel or chat by pressing CTRL + F. Search results will only contain messages and files found in the selected chat or channel.

Update Your Office 365 Profile Image in Microsoft Teams (introduced June 2020)

You Teams profile picture appears at top-right corner of the Teams app is also shared throughout all Office 365 services like Outlook, OneDrive, and SharePoint Online. Users now have the ability to upload a profile picture directly from Teams, among the other methods noted previously. Learn more about adding a profile image

Raise Your Hand in a Meeting (introduced May 18, 2020)

This new feature allows muted meeting attendees to indicate that they wish to speak by toggling the hand icon in the meeting control bar. When a meeting participant has raised their hand, an icon will appear next to their name in the roster view as well as their profile picture or video on the main meeting stage.

View up to 9 Video Participants at the Same Time (introduced May 15, 2020)

This new experience is optimized for attendees who have enabled video; audio-only participants are listed below the meeting stage. The new layout logic considers user bandwidth to provide the highest quality audio/video experience for your meetings.

Guest Access (introduced April 27, 2020)

Guest access allows teams in Sheridan to collaborate with people outside of the organization by granting them access to existing teams and channels in Teams. Anyone with a business or consumer email account, such as Outlook, Gmail, or others, can participate as a guest in Teams with full access to team chats, meetings, and files. Learn more new window icon