What you need to know
- Microsoft will soon roll out several improvements to Teams meetings, including a new default gallery experience and the video of Teams Room attendees enlarging automatically.
- The default gallery view of Microsoft Teams will show 16 participants, but meeting attendees will have to option to show 4, 9, 16, or 49 participants.
- Teams will support showing or hiding your personal video feed and prioritizing attendees with video enabled.
- The gallery view improvements will launch in public preview later this month.
Microsoft Teams meetings are about to get several improvements, including changes to the well-known gallery view for meetings. Microsoft shared several changes to gallery view that will enter testing in the near future, plus some tweaks to Together Mode and other parts of the popular communication tool.
Soon, all meeting participants in Teams will appear in a 16:9 box, regardless of if their video is enabled or disabled. The default gallery view should also be "more consistent and predictable for all meetings," according to Microsoft. That consistency comes from the uniform size of attendee windows and the default grid showing 16 meeting participants. You'll still be able to change the view to show 4, 9, 16, or 49 attendees.
Teams will use AI to optimize your gallery view in some setups, including prioritizing those who have their hand raised or who are actively speaking.
If a Teams Room joins a meeting, the video feed for that room will get bigger automatically. That makes sense, since a Teams Room will likely have multiple meeting participants, so enlarging the video will make everyone easier to see.
Those who find their own video feed distracting will have the option to hide it from their own gallery view. Enabling this feature will only hide your feed in your own gallery view, leaving you visible for other attendees. You can also just move your video feed within your view instead.
While some of the default for gallery view are changing, you'll still be able to change tile sizes and other settings through the options menu of Microsoft Teams.
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Other Microsoft Teams improvements
In addition to the changes to the gallery experience, Microsoft has several other features and improvements for Teams in the works. A new Light Theme option is on the way with support for customizing your color theme. Light Theme is already available within the Teams app.
Together Mode has a new layout that takes inspiration from the front row experience of Teams Rooms. Now, attendees with video feeds will appear in a row at the bottom of the screen with a shared background. The new layout should make attendees appear more connected while still prioritizing presented content. The new Together Mode layout enters public preview in early February.
Improved Teams meeting invites are also on the way in February. They present the most important information in a way that's easier to digest. Shortened meeting links will roll out in the second quarter of 2024 as well.
Picking the right device for your audio and video feeds will soon be easier, thanks to new fly-out menus that let you change more settings without leaving the meeting gallery.
Do you use Microsoft Teams?
We cover a lot of updates to Microsoft Teams, and almost inevitably someone on social media or in the comments complains about the platform. I'm curious if that's a vocal minority or a common feeling among our readers. Do you like Microsoft Teams? Do you use it for work but prefer other services in your personal life? Let us know in the comments below and share what you like or dislike about Microsoft Teams.
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at firstname.lastname@example.org.