This week’s topics:

Microsoft Wants to Talk About Group Sprawl (Finally)

Earlier this week, Tony Redmond highlighted that the Microsoft 365 Groups engineering team would like to talk about group sprawl with customers facing this issue.

Steve and Paul discuss this problem on the podcast, and you can read more in Tony’s article:

Tony Redmond – Microsoft Wants to Talk About Group Sprawl (Finally)

Microsoft Confuses Everyone with Teams Pro Service Plan (or License)

While Microsoft 365 Group sprawl becoming an issue surprised (almost) no-one, most people were surprised to learn that Microsoft dropped a new Teams Pro license into the Microsoft 365 Roadmap.

Paul attempts to explain why he thinks Microsoft is doing this – but like everyone, remains a little confused at Microsoft’s approach here, and we hope to learn more at Ignite 2021.

Tony wrote in more detail on this topic this week on the site:

Tony Redmond – Microsoft Confuses Everyone with Teams Pro Service Plan (or License)  

Your Teams meeting audio issues might be a thing of the past with Satin

It isn’t the first time we’ve heard about Satin, Microsoft’s eventual replacement for the Silk codec that Skype pioneered.

Satin is being rolled out first for peer-to-peer calls in Teams, and you’ll be able to view statistics to see whether this is in use for calls in the Teams Admin Center, under a user’s call history in the ‘advanced’ tab.

In the near future, Microsoft will also be rolling this out for Teams meetings.

Satin is designed to deal with packet loss in a better way to the existing Silk codec, avoiding audio drop-outs and degradation of quality, and uses much less bandwidth to provide better audio. Microsoft is beginning by increasing the quality of audio up to 24Khz and plans to further improve Satin to support CD-quality stereo sound in the future.

You can read Microsoft’s detailed post on Satin, how AI is used within it, and listen to comparable audio samples below:

Satin: Microsoft’s latest AI-powered audio codec for real-time communications

System admins running Linux and Mac OS can finally manage Exchange Online using PowerShell

Possibly filling a niche ask, Microsoft has released the Exchange Online V2 PowerShell module for both Linux and Mac.

Paul asks our listeners to get in touch in the comments, or on Twitter if this the feature you have been waiting for and to tell us how you’ll use it.

Steve talks about how this would have been especially useful in his days as a systems administrator, writing scripts that worked against both Windows and Unix environments over ten years ago. Ironically, the lack of capabilities to do these tasks on Linux led him to learn PowerShell.

EXO V2 PowerShell module is now Generally Available on Linux & macOS

We deep-dive headfirst into SharePoint Syntex with Joel Oleson in the below excerpt:

Microsoft MVP and Regional Director, Joel Oleson joins us on the podcast this week for a deep-dive into SharePoint Syntex.

Joel has been working heavily with Syntex and solving problems for businesses that use it. He explains more in-depth about Syntex, where it overlaps with Microsoft’s AI Builder, talks through several use-cases for Syntex – and how you can use it as a part of business process transformation to deliver a lot of value quickly.

Joel goes a level deeper in his upcoming TEC session, Five Practical Uses of SharePoint Syntex, and explains more in his article on Practical 365, Unsure of SharePoint Syntex? Five Practical Uses for Your Organization  

Find Joel on Twitter @JoelOleson, and at his blog

We discuss the most interesting new Microsoft 365 roadmap items you’ll want to keep an eye on…

Three related features are coming to the Teams Admin Center and to the Teams PowerShell module that relates to the Teams templates.

This month, PowerShell Support for Team Templates will arrive, allowing the creating and viewing of templates from PowerShell. Template Polices also arrive in the admin center, which allows you to choose the list of templates different users see.

If you are creating Teams for users, then a welcome addition to the Teams Admin Center will be arriving in March. When creating a Team in the admin center, you’ll have the same experience as if you were creating the Team in the client. This will be especially useful when using Templates.

In response to a big ask from education customers, Microsoft is introducing the ability for a meeting organizer to either disable and enable all attendees’ video, or a single attendee’s video, during a meeting.

Arriving in April and May respectively, we’d assume that this won’t allow you to forcibly turn on someone’s video, but enable or disable the ability for them to do so, much like the ability to forcibly mute attendees.

And finally – both this week and at long last – the Share to Teams from Outlook button will be arriving via the Monthly Channel in March. This feature will pop open a new Teams window from Outlook, providing a preview of the message before posting it to the Teams channel.

About the Author

Steve Goodman

Technology Writer and Chief Editor for AV Content at Practical 365, focused on Microsoft 365. A 12-time Microsoft MVP, author of several technology books and regular Microsoft conference speaker. Steve works at Advania in the UK as Field Chief Technology Officer, advising business and IT on the best way to get the most from Microsoft Cloud technology.

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