Microsoft Unveils Sleek New Unified App for Teams Users

The new app will improve the overall experience of users by providing additional features, like multi-window functionality.

If you’ve ever accidentally dialed your boss instead of your bestie on Microsoft Teams because you were flicking between a ton of tabs, you’ll be happy to learn that such issues will soon be a thing of the past.

Microsoft has announced a new unified application for its popular video conferencing platform that provides a centralized location for both personal and professional accounts. This new feature is described by Microsoft as a “single application” that allows users to “switch between multiple cloud environments, tenants, and account types across personal and work.”

So, how does this nifty new Microsoft Teams feature work? And more importantly, when can you get your hands on it?

A New Unified Experience

Using the new Microsoft Teams unified app will enable users to manage and add accounts by clicking on your profile picture in the top right-hand corner. And thanks to individual icons clearly laid out in the taskbar, you can seamlessly switch between personal and professional Teams accounts.

The app will also enable you to join a meeting via a chosen account, and because you won’t need to keep signing in to your account prior to joining a meeting, you shouldn’t be late. Microsoft will include these features in upcoming builds, it said.

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Microsoft Teams notifications are also beefed up in the unified app, making it clear which of your accounts they originate from. Each notification box also contains simple action items, such as answer and decline buttons.

“We listened to users about their communication needs in various aspects of their lives and how they want to use Teams. The feedback was clear that a multi-window experience is preferred.”- Microsoft spokesperson in a blog post

When and Where Is the New Unified Microsoft Teams App Available?

If you’re a member of the Windows Insider program, you’re in luck. You can try the Microsoft Teams unified app, currently called Microsoft Teams (work or school), in Windows 11 Build 26080.

For everyone else, you’re going to have to wait a bit. An official launch of the unified app is scheduled for later this year, and it will simply be known as “Microsoft Teams” in the future.

“This preview version of Microsoft Teams is immediately available on clean installs of Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 26080 and higher. Existing Windows Insiders need to be on Microsoft Teams version 24057.2000.2723.3544 or higher to see this capability, which is rolling out gradually.” – Microsoft

Given that this is a preview release, Microsoft has made it clear that users can expect to see changes between Microsoft Teams (free) and Microsoft Teams (work or school).

“These changes and more updates will continue until we reach general availability. Notably in this release, Teams will launch into a separate icon for single accounts.”

Microsoft also confirmed plans to ditch the consumer-facing “Microsoft Teams (free)” plan at some point in the future, although it didn’t provide a precise date.

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Written by:
Nic is a freelance journalist who has written on a variety of tech subjects over the years, including AI, cyber security, and telecoms, and whose work has appeared in publications such as BBC Tech, Gizmodo, Huffington Post, Engadget, Business Insider, and many more.
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