What’s New in Microsoft Teams Meetings, Webinars, and Calling

Microsoft has been constantly releasing feature updates to Microsoft Teams to make it more useful for collaboration, as many employees continue to work from home. This blog discusses some of the new meeting, webinar, and calling features for the months of May, June, and July 2021.

Meetings and Webinars

Dynamic View

Dynamic view auto-arranges the layout of your screen as meeting attendees join, speak, present, or turn on their videos.

Note: Picture above taken from the Microsoft TechCommunity site.

Presenter Mode

Presenter mode allows presenters to customize how their content and video appear to their audience. There will be three layouts available: Standout, Reporter and Side-by-side.  Standout layout is now available to show the speaker video as a silhouette in front of shared content. The latter two are coming soon.

Go to Share content > Presenter mode > Standout (your camera should be ON to use this feature)

Standout mode appearance:

Large Meeting Support

Meetings and webinars can hold up to 1,000 attendees. If you go over this capacity limit, your meeting will auto-scale to accommodate up to 10,000 attendees with view-only permission. The first 1,000 attendees will enjoy full Teams meeting experience which includes sharing screen, audio, video and chat. Attendees after this capacity limit will only have the view-only experience and will not be automatically promoted (can’t be manually promoted either) to the main meeting even if one or more of the first 1,000 attendees leave the meeting. Please see Microsoft’s ‘Teams view-only meeting experience’ article for more information.

Custom Registration

Meeting organizers can now add a custom attendee registration page to their meetings or webinars. They can add custom images to promote their brand or add custom questions to learn more about their attendees. An email confirmation with a calendar invite will be automatically sent to the registrant.

Attendance Dashboard

After a meeting or webinar, the meeting organizer can now view an attendance report from the Attendance tab under the Meeting Details (double click or open the meeting from your Teams calendar). The report will tell you how many of the attendees registered vs attended, who attended the meeting, and for how long (duration).

Lower All Raised Hands

During a meeting, attendees can virtually raise their hand by selecting Show reactions > Raise your hand in the meeting controls. If multiple attendees raised their hand, they will be listed in the order in which they raised their hand in the participants list.

Meeting organizers and presenters can now lower all raised hands with a single click. To do this, simply select Show participants > More options … > then click on the Lower all hands option.

Spotlighting Multiple Users in a Meeting

Spotlighting is like pinning a video for everyone in the meeting to see. Meeting organizers and presenters can now spotlight up to 7 participants simultaneously. This is great for meetings with multiple presenters to focus attendees’ attention to specific video feeds.

There are two different ways to do this:

1. Right click on the attendee’s video then select Spotlight or Add spotlight (for multiple spotlights).

2. Select Show participants > right click the name of the attendee whom you want to highlight > select Spotlight.

Chat Bubbles

Chats sent during a Teams meeting will now appear on the screens of all meeting attendees. There is no need to open the chat window anymore to view what others are typing. By default, this feature is ON. Select Don’t show chat bubbles under the More Actions option if you want to disable this feature.

Paging on Video Gallery

When at least 10 people have their cameras turned on during a meeting, large gallery view is available. When there are more than 49 meeting attendees in this view, the navigation controls < and > will appear below the video gallery. Use these controls to view more video attendees.

Note:  Picture above taken from the Microsoft TechCommunity site.


New Calling Experience

Microsoft has introduced a new calling experience with a simplified view of your contacts, voicemail and calling history in one view. Previously, users needed to go to different tabs to view these.

Call Merge

Call merge gives users the option to merge their active 1:1 call with another 1:1 or group call. This applies to both Teams VOIP calls and PSTN calls.

There are different ways to do this:

1. Make a new call and merge it with an existing call

While on a call, make another call. The first call will be automatically put on hold. When the second call connects, select More Actions … > Call merge.

2. Merge an incoming call with an existing call

When you receive an incoming call while still in a call, you can accept the second call to put the first call on hold. Then select More actions … > Call merge to combine the calls.

Transfer Calls Between Desktop and Mobile

When you have joined a meeting on one device (mobile phone) and then suddenly, you need to share content on another device (desktop), you can either transfer the meeting to the second device or keep both devices in the meeting. This new feature allows you to seamlessly transfer your call between different devices without any interruption.

While in a meeting on one device, open MS Teams on the second device. Click Join then Teams will give you 2 options: Add this device and Transfer to this device.

Add a Second Device to Your Meeting

Choose Add this device. Your mic on the second device will be automatically muted to prevent echo. You can turn this on or off as needed. You can now share your content from either device..

Transfer Your Meeting From One Device to Another

Choose Transfer to this device. Set audio and video preferences then click Join. Your first device will leave the meeting.

To see all the new features available in Microsoft Teams in May, June, and July 2021 please see the following links:

Contact us if you have any questions about Microsoft Teams.

Are You Receiving Our Newsletters?

Subscribe to receive our monthly newsletters with the latest updates all in one place! Get important product information, event recaps, blog articles, and more.


Monthly Newsletter Straight to Your Inbox