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Are you keeping up with Microsoft updates? The Microsoft Mondays: Microsoft Service Updates series from Total Solutions is here for your needs, and remember that Total Solutions also provides tailored, expert guidance during our consulting process. We are highlighting a few of the Microsoft announced upcoming updates from May:

[use the jump links to go to each update directly]

Keep an eye out for Microsoft Mondays for your Microsoft updates or speak with our technical team for your Microsoft needs.

* Updates posted here originally posted by Microsoft in the Microsoft 365 Message Center


Microsoft Teams: Channel cards

[MC797474 · Published May 31, 2024]

Summary

Microsoft Teams will introduce Channel cards providing an overview of a channel, including description, activity, team name, and membership. They will appear on desktop and web by hovering over channel names and offer quick access to settings and management. Rollout begins early July 2024, completing by late July 2024, with no admin action required.

Microsoft Teams users will soon be able to get a quick overview about a channel using Channel cards. Channel cards will rollout across Microsoft Teams for desktop and web. Channel cards can be found by hovering over the channel name in the header or wherever a channel is mentioned. 

Channel cards will provide information about a channel, including the description, last activity time, team name, and membership information. The card also provides a quick entry to notification settings, owner channel management, and the channel roster.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 397883

When this will happen: 

General Availability (Worldwide, GCC, GCC High, DoD): We will begin rolling early July 2024 and expect to complete by late July 2024.

How this will affect your organization:

Users will have a simpler way to get important information about channels. This new feature provides key contextual information as well as quick actions. 

What you need to do to prepare: This rollout will happen automatically with no admin action required. You may want to notify your users about this change and update any relevant documentation as appropriate.


Microsoft Teams: Presenter window enhancements while screensharing (Updated)

[MC767481 · Published Apr 3, 2024 Updated: May 31, 2024]

Summary

Microsoft Teams is enhancing the presenter window during screensharing to show up to four participants, active speakers, raised hands, reactions, and shared content previews. Meeting notifications will be more visible. Rollout starts mid-July 2024, with no preparation needed from users.

Updated May 31, 2024: We have updated the rollout timeline below. Thank you for your patience.

In Microsoft Teams, we are delivering new enhancements to the presenter window that is shown while screensharing. 

The presenter window now shows up to four meeting participants (both video and audio), active speakers, raised hands and reactions, and a preview of shared content.

Meeting notifications are surfaced to the central area of the screen for easier awareness and consistent windowing behavior.

These enhancements improve awareness and visibility of what’s going on in your meeting and make it easier to engage with other attendees while screensharing. 

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 383653

When this will happen:

Preview: We will begin rolling out mid-May 2024 and expect to complete by late May 2024.

General Availability (Worldwide, GCC, GCC High, and DoD): We will begin rolling out mid-July 2024 (previously late May) and expect to complete by late August (previously mid-June).

How this will affect your organization:

When sharing the Microsoft Teams screen or content, the presenter will now be able to better keep track of the participants’ activity during a meeting by using an extended presenter window.

Presenter Gallery

What you need to do to prepare: No action is needed to prepare for this change. You may want to notify your users about this change and update any relevant documentation as appropriate.


SharePoint Online: A new Start experience  

[MC797119 · Published May 30, 2024]

Summary

A new SharePoint Start experience is coming to SharePoint Online, simplifying site and page creation. It includes a hub for managing drafts, reviewing past work, and tracking engagement. Rollout begins early June 2024, completing by the end of June, and requires no admin action.

Coming soon to SharePoint Online is a new SharePoint Start experience, featuring a user-friendly approach that reduces the effort required for creating sites and pages. Creators will be able to visit the Start experience hub to refine drafts, review past work, and monitor engagement metrics.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 124824.

When this will happen:

General Availability (Worldwide, GCC, GCC High, and DoD): We will begin rolling out early June 2024 and expect to complete by end of June 2024.

How this will affect your organization:

The new SharePoint Start preview from SharePoint Home:

The reimagined SharePoint Start page:

Explore the new SharePoint Start page:

After rollout, this feature is on by default. Admins cannot turn it off.

What you need to do to prepare:

This rollout will happen automatically by the specified dates with no admin action required before the rollout. You may want to notify your users about this change and update any relevant documentation as appropriate. Learn more: Microsoft SharePoint Roadmap Update – May 2024 – Microsoft Community Hub. Before rollout, we will update this post with revised documentation.


Microsoft Viva Amplify: New Microsoft Copilot Deployment Kit

[MC797117 · Published May 30, 2024]

Summary

The message details the inclusion of a new Microsoft Copilot Deployment Kit in Microsoft Viva Amplify, designed to aid in change management and promote AI and Copilot usage. It will be available to licensed Viva Suite and C&C customers, with a rollout starting late May 2024. Users with access to Viva Amplify can utilize the pre-built campaign, and no admin action is required before the rollout. Organizations are advised to inform relevant teams and update documentation.

To help your organization prepare for and launch Microsoft Copilot for M365, we will include a new Microsoft Copilot Deployment Kit in Microsoft Viva Amplify. This kit is designed to help with change management and provides a pre-built campaign that communications teams will be able to share pre-drafted communications with their users directly in the apps that they use every day, like Microsoft Outlook, SharePoint, Teams, and Viva Engage, to help drive awareness and usage of AI and Copilot. The Copilot Deployment Kit will be available to licensed Viva Suite and Employee Communications and Communities (C&C) customers.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 392453.

General Availability (Worldwide): We will begin rolling out late May 2024 and expect to complete by early June 2024.

How this will affect your organization:

Users with permissions to access the Viva Amplify app will have access to the Copilot Deployment Kit. These users will see a new banner at the top of the campaign page where they can access this pre-built campaign. To learn more, visit Announcing the Copilot Deployment Kit in Viva Amplify – Microsoft Community Hub.

What you need to do to prepare:

Inform your corporate communicators and change management communicators that this feature is now available to help with their rollout and change management efforts for Microsoft Copilot.

This rollout will happen automatically by the specified date with no admin action required before the rollout. You may want to notify your users about this change and update any relevant documentation as appropriate.

Learn more


OneDrive for Business: Shortened URLs in OneDrive web

[MC796476 · Published May 28, 2024] 

Summary

OneDrive for Business is simplifying web URLs for easier navigation, rolling out mid-June to mid-July 2024. The new format will be “tenant-my.sharepoint.com” with no impact on existing scenarios. Redirects from old URLs will function, and no preparation is needed from users, though user training may be updated. Automation and scripts remain unaffected. Future improvements are planned without a specified timeline.

We’re simplifying our OneDrive for Business web URLs to make it easier for customers to navigate to and around OneDrive. When you visit OneDrive web, you will see that the current URL has the format “tenant-my.sharepoint.com/personal/alias/_layouts/15/onedrive.aspx?view=1” and the new URL will have the format “tenant-my.sharepoint.com”.

We will also replace the name of the pivot in the URL when the user browses to a pivot, e.g. “tenant-my.sharepoint.com/my”, “tenant-my.sharepoint.com/favorites”. 

When this will happen:

General Availability (Worldwide, GCC, GCCHigh, DoD): We will begin rolling out mid-June 2024 and expect to complete by mid-July 2024.

How this will affect your organization:

This change will gradually be rolling out to everyone from mid-June to mid-July. End users will see the new URL when they navigate to OneDrive web and when they browse to a pivot (e.g. Home, My Files, Favorite, etc.). The end user will no longer see the “personal/alias/_layouts/15/onedrive.aspx” information in the URL when they open a folder within OneDrive or navigate to a Team or Site in the Quick Access list.

There will be no change to the URL when they open a file.

No existing scenarios will be impacted by this change. Attempts to access the previous URL (tenant-my.sharepoint.com/personal/alias/_layouts/15/onedrive.aspx?view=1) will be redirected to the new URL. All sharing links, bookmarks, and custom redirectors (e.g., typing tenant.onedrive.com to go to OneDrive Web) will remain functional. Browsing content within another user’s OneDrive will also continue to work and will display the old URL format. There will be no changes to SharePoint Web URLs.”

What you need to do to prepare:

You don’t need to do anything to prepare. However, you may want to update your user training to reflect the new OneDrive URL.

Although end users will see a simplified URL, the underlying URL to a user’s OneDrive is unchanged. Any scripts or automation will be unimpacted by this change. If you need to reference an end user’s OneDrive via its unique URL, you can access it using the methods described here: https://learn.microsoft.com/sharepoint/list-onedrive-urls 

For your awareness, we plan to make future improvements to (1) simplify the OneDrive URL for files, folders and sites and (2) update the tenant-my.sharepoint.com domain to onedrive.cloud.microsoft. However, we don’t have a timeline to announce for either of these changes.


Microsoft Teams Live Event Retirement (Updated)

[MC678003 · Published May 28, 2024]

Summary

The support for Microsoft Teams Live Events has been extended beyond the initial retirement date of September 30th, 2024. Customers can continue using it and upgrade to town hall, the new event solution, at their convenience. Town hall is available and will receive new features, while Teams Live Events will still be supported. For more details, refer to the linked blog post.

Updated May 28, 2024: To ensure customer confidence in our product line, we are extending the support for Teams Live Events beyond the previously announced deadline of September 30th, 2024. We have concluded through customer feedback that this change to our initial deprecation plan, by maintaining support for Live Events, will empower customers to produce large events as established and provide more time to upgrade to town hall, our new digital streaming event solution for large events, on their own schedule. Town hall will continue to serve as the platform where we will deliver new product value to our customers.

Teams Live Events will continue to be supported. We want to ensure that customers can upgrade to town hall on their own schedule as we work to bring new features and capabilities to town hall. Town hall is already available for commercial customers in public clouds, and we are adding new features regularly.

If you are using Teams Live Events for your large-scale digital events, you can continue to do so past the previously announced deprecation date of September 30th, 2024. However, we encourage you to try town hall, which offers a more modern and interactive experience for your live events. 

You don’t need to do anything at this time to continue using Teams Live Events. If you have directed your organization to not schedule Live Events after September due to the deprecation announcement, you may now schedule Live Events past September 2024. For more information please refer to our blog post regarding this announcement: Updates for Town Hall in Microsoft Teams and Teams Live Events.

 —Original message below for reference—

With the introduction of Town halls in Microsoft Teams, Teams Live Events will be retired for commercial customers on September 30, 2024. This provides commercial customers with a 12-month window to prepare for the retirement and transition off Teams Live Events. 

When this will happen:

September 30, 2024

How this will affect your organization:

After September 30, 2024, Teams Live Events will no longer be supported, and access will be discontinued. Customers will not be able to schedule, start, or join any events on Teams Live Events after this date. Existing recordings will be available to access until December 31, 2024. If customers want to retain any recordings from prior events, they will need to download the recordings and upload them to a different location before December 31, 2024. Between now and September 2024, customers can continue to use Teams Live Events with no change in their existing experience. However, our recommendation is that customers (both existing and new) transition to and start to use town halls as it becomes generally available on October 5, 2023.

What you need to do to prepare:

To prepare your organization for the transition we advise:

  • Start to use town hall as it becomes generally available on October 5.
  • Learn more about town hall when documentation becomes available on adoption.microsoft.com and learn.microsoft.com on October 5.
  • Start planning to download recordings your organization wishes to retain before December 31, 2024.


Check out previous Microsoft Updates that Total Solutions has posted here -> Microsoft Updates Archives – Total Solutions Inc.