Microsoft to add new webinar and ‘meeting intelligence’ capabilities to Teams via Teams Pro

Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft is adding what it’s calling a new “service plan” to Microsoft 365 and Office 365 education and business subscriptions in mid-March. The plan, called Teams Pro, will bring webinar and “meeting intelligence” capabilities to Teams.

Microsoft made available a bit of information about the coming Teams Pro plan via a posting to its Office Message Center in message 238782, as noted by, earlier this week. The message doesn’t include many details but does say Teams Pro will be rolling out at the tenant level starting mid-March. It also notes that by default, the new Teams Pro capabilities will be available to all users with M365/O365 E3, E5, A3, A5, Business Standard, and Business Basic licenses.

The message doesn’t stipulate whether the webinar and meeting insights capabilities will be free or paid add-ons. I’ve asked Microsoft; no word back so far.

Microsoft MVP Vesa Nopanen, who

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This cutting-edge cloud-computing service is helping researchers track COVID’s spread

Cloud computing is powering a transformaion in healthcare research.

Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto

There’s a saying in the scientific community: all biology is computational biology. In other words, when you’re dealing with whole genomes, or datasets compiled from thousands of records containing thousands more biomarkers, you need serious computational power – and techniques – to get the most out of the data. Now, cloud platforms built for biomedical research are providing the power that these projects need.

Three years ago, Verily, the life sciences arm of Google’s parent company Alphabet, along with MIT and Harvard’s biomedical and genomic research center the Broad Institute, set up Terra, an open-source cloud research platform for storing and analysing biomedical data.

The platform’s creation, says Anthony Philippakis, chief data officer at the Broad Institute, was driven by two trends within the wider biomedical space: an explosion in the volume and types of data available

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Hybrid cloud tales from the field: How is Azure Arc being used?

Head to the cloud or bust. That’s one conclusion that could be drawn from continued double digit growth of cloud computing over the past year: AWS revenues jumping 25{11a436f66830eb13993988d28ae9a82dcb17c6650a894077d534e592200cfa64} while Azure and Google Cloud saw steeper 50{11a436f66830eb13993988d28ae9a82dcb17c6650a894077d534e592200cfa64} marks. With the pandemic driving enterprises to pivot their businesses to the new facts on the ground, it’s not surprising that the long term secular trend of cloud adoption an added shot in the arm.

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Hybrid cloud: What it is, why it matters

As organizations attempt to strike a balance between having all IT services on premises and offloading storage and compute to the cloud, a logical middle ground has emerged: the hybrid cloud.

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But for many organizations, public cloud deployment is not practical. Constraints could include data residency laws, lack of public cloud presence in certain geographies, and/or highly stringent near real-time or hard real-time use cases where

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15 years at ZDNet: What a long, strange trip it’s been

This weekend marked the 15th anniversary of my first post on ZDNet. To mark the occasion, I went back and immersed myself in the news of the day to see how much the world has changed in the past decade and a half. It was a disorienting trip down memory lane.

This is what the ZDNet home page looked like that day, courtesy of the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.

In February 2006, technology was mostly about PCs

In early 2006, George W. Bush was President of the United States. The leading candidates to replace him, according to a Quinnipiac University poll, were former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and a freshman Senator from Illinois named Barack Obama. Whatever happened to those guys?

One bit of political news that made it to ZDNet’s front page that day was a story about “the new JibJab joke hub.” I

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Windows 10 2004 just hit a major milestone

Windows 10 version 2004 is now ready for deployment.

Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Microsoft has Windows 10 version 2004 to the next phase of rollout, declaring it “ready for broad deployment”, six months after it was released.  

The shift in status means that this version of Windows 10, which Microsoft released in May 2020, is ready for everyone to install. Previously, Windows 10 users on earlier versions had to ‘seek’ the update by choosing to check for updates in Windows Update. 

As of February 3, 2021, Microsoft says: “Windows 10, version 2004 is designated for broad deployment. The recommended servicing status is Semi-Annual Channel.”

SEE: Windows 10 Start menu hacks (TechRepublic Premium)

In the enterprise, moving to broad deployment means customers can accelerate the deployment of this version of Windows 10. 

Microsoft has also updated the status of Windows 10 version 1909 to “ready for broad deployment for all

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Microsoft details its legacy Edge browser phase-out strategy

Credit: Microsoft

The end of Microsoft’s legacy Edge browser is closing in fast. Microsoft this week provided more details as to exactly how it plans to remove the old Edge from Windows.

In August 2020, Microsoft officials said they would no longer provide any security updates for the legacy Edge desktop browser after March 9, 2021. (That’s March Patch Tuesday.) Today, February 5, Microsoft added some additional information about what will happen next.

Microsoft plans to remove legacy Edge and replace it with the new, Chromium-based Edge when users apply the April Windows 10 Patch Tuesday release on April 13, 2021.

Microsoft officials provided this information in a post about Edge kiosk mode, and I would have completely missed it without calling it out. Microsoft’s blog post advised kiosk-mode customers to install the new Microsoft Edge and set up kiosk mode before they apply the April

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