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Build 2021: Microsoft announces collaborative apps for Teams

Microsoft Teams Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Teams (Microsoft)

Microsoft is opening up Teams to developers making it easier for them to build collaborative apps. 

Microsoft Teams currently has over 145 million users globally. With the pandemic still raging on, and companies adopting a hybrid work culture, services like Microsoft Teams are getting more important. Microsoft is also opening up Teams to developers to build apps which will be called “collaborative apps”.

“With collaborative apps, end users can easily work with others to complete their projects at any time, from anywhere, and stay in the flow of work without needing to switch across multiple apps and data,” Microsoft said in a blog. Developers will now be able to use standard web technologies, JavaScript, and Teams APIs to integrate into Teams. Microsoft is also making it easier for developers to build apps that seamlessly work across different platforms including Windows, macOS, Web, iOS, Android and Linux.

Developers will now have access to the main stage in a Teams meeting. This will help developers create multi-user collaboration experiences such as whiteboard, design, and projects board. Microsoft will also give developers access to creating custom scenes for Teams meetings. Developers will also get real-time access to media streams for features like transcription, translation, note taking, and insights gathering.

Microsoft Teams custom scene.
Microsoft Teams custom scene. (Microsoft)

Microsoft also announced new features for users at Build 2021. Fluid components in Microsoft Teams will “allow end users to send a message with a table, action items, or a list that can be co-authored and edited by everyone in line and that is shareable across Office applications like Outlook.” Microsoft is also adding message extensions in Outlook soon.

Microsoft will also allow users to purchase subscriptions of partner apps directly from the Teams Store and the Teams Admin Center. This way users will be able to easily access third-party apps without leaving Teams. It also gives developers more monetisation opportunities for their tools.

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