Microsoft Build: All the Windows 10 and Microsoft 365 updates you need to know


Angela Lang/CNET

New updates to Microsoft Teams and Windows 10 and a new List app are coming to Microsoft 365 soon, company executives said at the annual Microsoft Build developer conference on Tuesday. Due to coronavirus lockdowns and quarantines, the conference is taking place online this week. 

Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming changes, and how they will affect your workflow and use of these platforms. 

Read more: How to get Microsoft Office 365 for free

Microsoft Teams

Users of Microsoft Teams — the company’s workplace video chat service that has seen major increases in use during the pandemic — will soon see improvements to app search, and personalized suggestions, to help you find the most relevant apps in the Teams store. Later this year, you’ll be able to open apps in a separate window for easier access. 

Customizable templates are also coming to Teams in the next few months. These templates will make it so you don’t have to set up a new team from scratch, and instead give you several customizable templates to choose from depending on the purpose of the group, such as event management or crisis response. 

Read more: Zoom vs. Microsoft Teams: Which video chat app to use during quarantine

The Bookings app is also now generally available in Teams, which lets organizations manage meetings among multiple departments, staff members and outside guests in one scheduling tool. Interoperability with Skype TX (rolling out in May) and NDI support (coming in June) will let you use Teams to create online conferences, interviews, press briefings, entertainment and other productions. You’ll also be able to share those productions through social media, streaming platforms, TV broadcasts or websites. 

For developers, new extensions in Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code will let you build Teams apps within other tools, and publish apps directly to AppSource or your organization’s app catalog. Power Apps Studio integration with teams will do the same for low code or no code developers, too. And once an app is published, IT admins will have new app management capabilities, including the ability to purchase licenses for apps directly within the admin center. 

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Windows 10

Amid the pandemic, people are spending more than 4 trillion minutes on Windows 10 a month — an increase of 75 percent from last year, Microsoft executives said. With more than 1 billion Windows 10 monthly active devices in use, Microsoft is introducing Project Reunion. This is a tool for developers that unifies the Windows platform and decouples it from the OS, so they can more easily integrate across Win32 and UWP APIs — making app building easier.

Windows 10 and the new Edge browser will also allow you to uninstall web apps the way you would regular Windows software, Microsoft said at Build. You’ll also be able to manage web apps in settings, and share content with web apps the way you can with other apps. 

The Windows 10 May 2020 update rolled out to developers last week

Read more: How to download Windows 10 for free

Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 — the company’s new service that includes the Microsoft Office 365 suite of productivity tools and other features — will get a new app called Microsoft Lists this summer. Lists will help you share and track information like contacts and notifications from Teams, SharePoint and Outlook, with the goal of simplifying the user experience. 

Microsoft Lists will integrate with Power Apps and Power Automate. 

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