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Enterprise Chat News Round Up #23

Industry News September 5, 2018

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Enterprise Chat News Round Up #23

September is here and we’re ready for new month of enterprise chat updates.

This week, Slack subtly rolled out new features like time-limited status messages, while Microsoft discussed upcoming features for Teams users to look forward to later this year. Cisco also unveiled a wide range of new updates, designed to enhance the Cisco WebEx teams experience.

Let’s take a look at the most significant announcements from August 29th to September 6th.

Microsoft Teams Discusses “Smart” New Features

In the lead-up to Ignite, Microsoft has been very active online this week, talking about the upcoming features that their Teams users can expect to see later this year. For instance, soon, users will be able to create a full transcript from an audio or video file in their Microsoft Teams environment, available in more than 320 different file types.

With AI being a big driver for Microsoft this year, the company will also be looking into automatic captions for pictures, and in-video face detection. Image recognition and text extraction features could help Microsoft Teams users to search through their conversations quickly, finding visual content as quickly as words or phrases.

New smart features for Teams
New smart features for Teams

Cisco Reveals a Slew of Updates for September

Cisco announced a considerable range of updates, ready to roll out 9/6/2018. Some of the new additions to Cisco WebEx Teams include:

· Add GIFs to messages on Mac, iPhone, Android, and iPad through Cisco’s integration with GIPHY. GIFs are enabled by default, or you can disable them if you prefer through the WebEx control hub.

· Undo whiteboard actions: If you accidentally made a mistake using the Cisco Whiteboard, you can undo everything you’ve drawn with the new “Undo” feature. This only removes your work, not the work of your colleagues.

· Wireless screen sharing: Share content from a mobile device onto a WebEx device and Cisco WebEx Teams for quick collaboration.

Atlassian Launches Jira Ops with Slack Integration

Atlassian has just announced their acquisition of “OpsGenie,” an incident management company, and the subsequent creation of “Jira Ops,” a service that will help to streamline incident responses, provide visibility into ongoing incidents, and deliver alerts to IT teams.

The purchase is the first that Atlassian has made since the partnership with Slack was announced, and the new access to incident management technology could be a useful update for the combined companies.

Jira Ops integration with Slack
Jira Ops integration with Slack

Slack Subtly Unveils New Away Messages and Time-Sensitive Statuses

Slack pushed out a new update for its web, desktop and mobile clients this week, featuring time-limited statuses. The change allows users to set themselves as “on vacation” for a week, or “out for lunch” for thirty minutes, without having to worry about remembering to change the status when they return.

The time-sensitive statuses come with the option to use preset or custom messages, alongside preset expiration times. Though it might not be a major change, it’s another way to differentiate Slack from other enterprise chat apps, which generally offer around four statuses at most. Time-sensitive statuses are also a great way to ensure business operations keep running smoothly, without having to worry about clogged-up channels and manually written vacation notices.

Slack made a minor tweak this week; statuses now auto time out
Slack made a minor tweak this week

Microsoft Teams Reveals “Click to Join” Functionality

Following a stream of updates to Microsoft Teams last week, which tipped the enterprise chat application over the border into the region of Skype feature parity, Microsoft has only made minor changes to its service this week. First, Microsoft Teams delivered shareable team URLs so that you can just send a quick link to someone and have them join your conversations in a matter of seconds. You’ll be able to access public teams instantly with the shareable links, whereas private teams will need to approve every access request.

Microsoft also revealed that Teams is now available in both Hebrew and Arabic, along with a new interface layout that reads right-to-left.

They also noted future implementation of cleaning tools that allow you to “archive” conversations that you don’t want to lose but need to keep out of the way. This should help to get some of the clutter out of the average team environment.

Microsoft Teams Suffers Outage After Storm at Texas Data Center

Lightning hit the Microsoft data centers in Texas this week, disabling the cloud-based Microsoft Services for the South-Central region of the U.S. The storm in San Antonio knocked the power out temporarily, leading to service outages in everything from Office 365 to Microsoft Teams, and even Azure.

Since many of Microsoft’s services come with service-level agreements that assure 99.9% uptime, anyone who was affected by the outage for a significant amount of time can apply for service credits from Microsoft.

Map detailing where Azure suffered this week
Map detailing where Azure suffered this week

Microsoft Teams Integrates with OnePlaceMail for Enhanced Collaboration

Microsoft and OnePlace Solutions announced a new partnership this week. This took the shape of a Microsoft Teams integration with the OnePlaceMail for Outlook app. The integration will allow the mobile workforce in modern companies to move content out of their Microsoft Outlook environment into a Microsoft Teams channel with ease.

The service is available immediately from Microsoft AppSource across any Outlook environment, including Android and iOS applications. The hope is that this new integration will allow employees to do more with their communication and collaboration apps, by bridging the gaps between disparate tools.

Thanks for joining us in our latest weekly news roundup. We’ll be back with more updates next week! Remember to catch up with us on Twitter and LinkedIn for more of the latest news about Enterprise Chat!