Microsoft Teams: These new features are coming for Android users

Microsoft is finally bringing blurred backgrounds for video calls and meetings to its Teams app for Android. 

The move will bring it up to par with the Teams desktop app and the iOS app, which gained blurred backgrounds in April. 

A Microsoft Teams engineer this week confirmed on its user feedback pages that the company is planning to add background blur support for Android although they didn’t give a timeline for its release.  

SEE: Managing and troubleshooting Android devices checklist (TechRepublic Premium)

Blurred background and custom background effects proved popular for the millions of people carrying out meetings from home during the pandemic. The feature is one way users can partially conceal distractions that may be happening during a video call or meeting. The detail was first spotted by MS Poweruser.

Microsoft is extending several other features from the Teams desktop app to Android in the coming months. 


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Microsoft takes the wraps off Surface Pro 7+ for business, education users

Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft announced the newest member of the Surface PC family today, January 11: The Surface Pro 7+. Surface Pro 7+ is an incremental upgrade to the Surface Pro 7, and will begin shipping next week via business channels for commercial and education customers. (The Pro 7+ won’t be available in the usual consumer retail channels like Best Buy.)

Rumors had been circulating for a while that Microsoft would be refreshing its Surface line with a Surface Pro 8 and Surface Laptop 4 early in 2021. I asked Microsoft if there was a Surface Laptop 4 ready for imminent announcement and was told the company had no comment. 

Surface Pro 7+ includes 11th-generation Intel Core processors; optional LTE support; and overall performance improvements. Microsoft kept the same form factor with the Pro 7+ in order to simplify the lives of business and IT admins who may want to

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Used smartphone sales to dial in near double-digit growth in 2020

In contrast to recent revenue and shipment declines in the new smartphone market, with minimal growth expected over the next few years, the used market shows no signs of slowing down across all parts of the globe, according to research from IDC.

In its Worldwide used smartphone forecast, 2020-2024 report, an overview and five-year forecast of the worldwide refurbished phone market and its expansion and growth, the analyst defines a refurbished smartphone as a device that has been used and disposed of at a collection point by its owner, sent off to a facility for reconditioning and eventually sold via a secondary market channel. It stresses that a refurbished smartphone is not a “hand me down” or gained as the result of a person-to-person sale or trade.

Based on that definition, IDC expects worldwide shipments of used smartphones, including both officially refurbished and used smartphones, to have reached a total

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Intercontinental Exchange says its crypto venture Bakkt will go public via a SPAC merger at a $2.1B valuation (Alexander Osipovich/Wall Street Journal)

Alexander Osipovich / Wall Street Journal:

Intercontinental Exchange says its crypto venture Bakkt will go public via a SPAC merger at a $2.1B valuation  —  ICE’s Bakkt crypto venture plans to roll out an app for trading and making payments with digital assets  —  Intercontinental Exchange Inc., or ICE, will take its cryptocurrency venture public … … Read More