Microsoft begins testing Groups integration with Home windows 11

Credit score: Microsoft

Microsoft is beginning to check the promised Groups chat integration with Home windows 11 immediately, July 20, starting with a subset of Home windows Insider testers within the Dev channel. The brand new Groups chat button, which Microsoft plans to construct into the Home windows 11 taskbar, will substitute the Skype Meet Now button that’s a part of Home windows 10.

Testers will be capable of click on the Chat icon within the taskbar (or use WIN+C for the keyboard shortcut) to see their most up-to-date Groups conversations or begin a brand new chat or name. If customers need to open the complete Groups app, they will click on the “Open Microsoft Groups” choice from the Chat flyout or launch it immediately from the Begin Menu or Search. However customers may have needed to first obtain and set up the Groups app earlier than they will launch the app, because the app just isn’t preloaded as a part of Home windows 11, as officers mentioned earlier.

Microsoft is redesigning the Groups consumer for Home windows 11 to make it look extra according to Home windows 11 and out there from the brand new Microsoft Retailer. The brand new model, which is able to not be an Electron app (and as an alternative will probably be an Edge WebView 2 one), will assist mild and darkish modes, Collectively Mode, and the power to ship dwell emoji reactions, use polls, combine immediately with calendar, see wealthy views for recordsdata and pictures shared in chats, and extra. Customers may have the choice to sync routinely their Skype and Outlook contacts.

The mixing of the Groups chat button in Home windows 11 is yet one more method Microsoft is working to persuade clients to strive utilizing the Groups private/client options.

With this primary flight of the Groups button integration in Home windows 11, Microsoft is limiting assist to English (US solely). Extra language and localization assist is coming later. Offline mode just isn’t but supported. Not all options can be found but, however will probably be launched progressively to Insiders within the coming weeks. These coming options embrace particular person and group audio and video calls and conferences, presence and standing settings, display screen sharing, and extra.

Microsoft officers are saying for customers on Home windows 10, Meet Now utilizing Skype will proceed to be out there (for so long as Home windows 10 is supported — which means at the very least till 2025, I’d assume, although Microsoft did not present an precise date). And officers are emphasizing that simply because these Groups and Skype chat buttons are on the taskbar doesn’t imply customers nonetheless cannot go for a distinct, non-Microsoft chat/video providing like Zoom.