Microsoft's Slack rival gets translation and Surface Hub compatibility

Microsoft's Slack rival gets translation and Surface Hub compatibility

Microsoft has now announced that Teams is now being used by over 200,000 organizations around the world including GM, A.P. Moller-Maersk, ConocoPhillips, Macy's, NASCAR, Navistar, RLH Corporation, and Technicolor.

It has been exactly one year since Microsoft Teams first launched, and many organizations have since come on board with the chat-based collaboration tool. The company has been steadily growing the capabilities offered with the app, and this week it's introducing another series of enhancements aimed at fortifying its message that Teams will ultimately be the end-all, be-all intelligent enterprise communications and collaboration hub.

Microsoft is also adding a number of new features during the year.

Microsoft's AI has also made it easier to initiate and participate in Teams chats. This functionality will extend to IP phones and conference room devices.

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First off is cloud recording, which will provide "one-click meeting recordings with automatic transcription and timecoding, enabling all team members the ability to read captions, search within the conversation, and playback all or part of the meeting". In the future, it will also include facial recognition, so remarks can be attributed to specific meeting attendees.

But perhaps of the more interesting new additions will the addition of inline message translation.

Device Support While roughly 60% of the coming enhancements relate to software, hardware isn't to be ignored, Wright said - because, after all, delivering on the intelligent communications experience Microsoft envisions requires compatibility between Teams and a wide variety of calling and meeting room devices. To help participants see you more clearly, the system will blur out a distracting background, putting the focus of the video on you rather than any clutter behind. The company shared today Teams will pick up consultative transfer and call delegation and federation features. This includes Surface Hub, the large-screen video collaboration device for huddle spaces and other small-to-medium meeting rooms.

And despite market concern at Cortana's future, Microsoft said it will add Cortana voice interactions for Teams-enabled devices.

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