Microsoft 365 monthly update – November 2020

In this month’s update we take an in-depth look at all the recently released features for all the products within Microsoft 365.

SharePointSite performance, my feed web part, lists undo/redo

Teams SharePoint tab, Forms for polls in Teams, polls/ surveys/ checklists, AI-based noise suppression, Together mode scene selection, full screen support, instant meeting from mobile, updated iOS meeting layout, pinned posts, set presence duration, Android on-demand chat translation, Power Apps in Teams GA, Power Automate in Teams, Power Virtual Agents in Teams GA, Teams apps for meetings GA

Teams (cont.)Call merge, survivable branch appliance, Ericsson Session Border Controller certification, Teams displays, new features for Teams Rooms/ Surface Hubs, SSO for bots, device management automatic alerting, Shift schedule assistance

Teams (Education)Class insights & spotlight student activity, prevent students from unmuting, delete meeting recordings, updated assignment settings, add your favourite apps to virtual classes and courses

Teams (Government) Full screen support, OneNote (DoD), Prevent attendees from unmuting

OneDrive Create shared library in OneDrive, file sharing in Teams, Known Folder Move in FRE

Power AppsManage page permissions from portal studio, Dataverse GA, Azure API Management connector, new layout containers in canvas apps, what’s new Power Query & Dataflows, RTE control, new search experience in model-driven apps

Power AutomateRPA UI flows analytics, Power Automate Desktop update, 24 new connectors, view app install failures in ISV Studio, train form processing models with different layouts in AI Builder, AI Builder consumption reporting

Power BINew export settings, on-prem data gateway update, November feature summary, anomaly detection, Power BI Premium, paginated report feature summary

Related At-a-glance/ key points in emails, capture and share in Edge

SharePoint

SharePoint site performance page

The new site performance page gives insights into the what impacts the viewing experience on a given page, as well as getting actionable feedback on things like how certain page or site assets would benefit from a content delivery network (CDN), what web parts and their usage might be impact page load times etc.

IZ-RP-25_002_Site-perf-page_1.jpg
SharePoint site performance page.

Find out more:

My feed web part

The my feed web part shows a mix of content from across Microsoft 365, based on what’s likely to be most relevant to the current user at any given time. The feed is personal. Different users will see different content.

The my feed web part in SharePoint Online.

Find out more:

Microsoft Lists: Undo / redo

As you work across rows and columns within Microsoft Lists, mistakes will happen and it needs to be easy to recover information. Similar to how you can remove sentences and phrases in a Word document, you will be able to do this in Lists by using the undo button. The same is true in reverse if there was something in a field previously that you want to bring back – just click the redo button.

IZ-RP-25_005_MSLists-undo-redo.jpg
Click Undo or Redo to revert changes or remove mistakes within Microsoft Lists.

Find out more:


Teams

Updated SharePoint tab app

You can now use the SharePoint tab experience to pin any page, news, list or document library as a separate tab in their Teams channel. Just go to the “+” button from any channel in Teams, select SharePoint and start pinning resources that your team needs to collaborate better.

IZ-RP-25_007_SP-tab-app_Teams.jpg
The updated SharePoint tab experience when adding pages, lists or document libraries to a channel in Teams.

Find out more:

Microsoft Forms for polls in Microsoft Teams meetings

Forms polls for Teams meetings provides an easily discoverable and seamless experience that will help you conduct more engaging and productive meetings. With Forms polls, meeting presenters can prepare, launch, and evaluate polls before, during, and after meetings, respectively, all from one place under a tab in the Teams meeting.

Polls in Microsoft Teams.

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Additional options for polls, surveys & checklists in Teams

There are now new templates for polls, surveys, and checklists in Teams from the OfficeDev GitHub repo. Once installed and configured by the Teams administrators, these messaging extensions provide a simple and intuitive experience for users across all platforms without the need to use 3rd party apps.

Easily create surveys to gather feedback to improve your processes.

Find out more:

AI-based noise suppression

 The AI-based noise suppression analyzes your audio feed filtering out the noise and retaining only the speech signal. You can also control how much noise suppression you want, including a high setting to suppress more background noise. 

Noise Suppression Settings in the Teams profile
AI-based noise suppression in Teams.

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Together mode scene selection

Microsoft have introduced new Together mode scene selections to transport your team to a variety of settings. Choose a scene to set the tone and create a unique experience for your meeting, whether it be a smaller conference room meeting, or an all-hands meeting held in an outdoor amphitheater.

TogetherMode.png
New Together mode scene selection.

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Full screen support in new meetings experience

With full screen mode on Windows the meeting window fills up the whole screen, removing all other screen elements, including the title bar on the top and task bar on the bottom. On Mac OS, full screen mode maximizes the meeting window and the title bar is hidden. This helps you to reduce distractions and focus your attention.

fullscreen.png
Full screen support in new meetings experience.

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Instant meetings from mobile devices

The Meet Now icon is now available on mobile devices from the calendar tab and in the Teams channel helping you connect with your team instantly.

Once you start your meeting, you can use any messaging app on your mobile device to share the invite or add participants directly to the meeting, and anyone in the Teams channel can join without an invite.

InstantMeetingMobile (1).png
Start an instant meeting from your mobile device.

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Updated layout for meetings on iOS 

Microsoft have improved the Teams experience on iOS devices with a new presentation mode, the ability to see more participants, and the ability to see shared content and a spotlighted participant concurrently.

Meetings on iOS.png
Updated layout for meetings on iOS.

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Pinned posts

You can pin any message in a channel, and it appears in the channel information pane for all members of the channel to see.

Pinned Post.png
Pinned posts in Teams.

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Set presence status duration

Let others know when you are available in Teams by managing your presence status. Users can now change their presence status for a specific period.

Duration on status menu
Set your presence status duration in Teams.

Find out more:

Android On-Demand Chat Translation

Inline message translation gives all your team members a voice and facilitates global collaboration. With a simple click, people who speak different languages can fluidly communicate with one another by translating posts in channels and chat.

Find out more:

Power Apps in Teams generally available

The new Power Apps app for Teams is now generally available. It allows you to build and deploy custom apps without leaving Teams. With the simple, embedded graphical app studio, it has never been easier to build low code apps for Teams.

The new Power Apps app for Teams can be backed by a new relational datastore – Dataverse for Teams.

Build solutions with Power Apps in Teams.

Find out more:

New Power Automate App for Teams generally available

The new app makes it easier than ever to automate workflows within teams. With the simplified flow designer, you can easily build flows by selecting from a number of templates and simply selecting your options from drop down menus.

The new Power Automate app for Teams is now generally available.

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Power Virtual Agents (PVA) for Teams generally available

Power Virtual Agents (PVA) for Teams is now generally available. Microsoft are also providing additional features including native authentication, where bots can be designed to provide information to users based upon their identity. You can now also easily make your bot available to your teammates and have admin approval to make it available for the whole organization.

Power Virtual Agents (PVA) for Teams is now generally available.

Find out more:

Teams apps for meetings now generally available

Teams apps for meetings are now generally available with nearly 20 new apps in the Teams app store, such as Asana, HireVue, Monday.com, Slido, and Teamflect, as well as familiar Microsoft apps such as Forms. Learn more. If you’re a developer, learn more about creating Teams apps for meetings.

Teams apps for meetings now generally available.

Find out more:

Call merge

Call Merge gives end users the capability to merge their Teams VoIP and PSTN active 1-1 calls into another 1-1 call or another group call. You can merge your calls, simply by choosing the “…” (more actions) button from the call controls and select “merge calls”. 

Call merge button in menu
Call merge in Teams Calling.

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Survivable Branch Appliance

To support the most critical conversations in the event of an outage, the new Survivable Branch Appliance (SBA) allows you to place and receive PSTN calls even in the event of a WAN outage. This SBA is now available to certified Session Border Controllers (SBC) vendors, allowing SBCs to link with the Teams client in the event the client cannot reach the Microsoft Calling network.

Find out more:

Ericsson Session Border Controller certification

Ericsson has completed the Session Border Controller (SBC) certification process, which ensures that their SBC supports Direct Routing for Microsoft Teams, joining the list of certified SBCs.

Find out more:

Microsoft Teams displays

Microsoft Teams displays is a new category of all-in-one dedicated Teams devices that features an ambient touchscreen and a hands-free experience powered by Cortana. These devices seamlessly integrate with your PC, providing easy access to Teams chat, meetings, calling, calendar, and files. 

ThinkSmart.png
Microsoft Teams displays.

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New features rolling out to Microsoft Teams Rooms and Surface Hub

The latest app for Microsoft Teams Rooms on Android, version 1.0.94.2020102101, is now available through the Teams Admin Center.  New features have also begun rolling out to Surface Hub, including:

Microsoft Teams Rooms on Android:

  • Support for dual screens: Now you can use Teams Rooms on Android in spaces with a dual screen configuration.
  • New gallery views: Teams Rooms on Android now supports the 3×3, large gallery, and Together Mode gallery views.
  • Auto-answer for meetings: Now, Microsoft are providing a setting that allows calls to be answered automatically. This new feature can be enabled through the Admin settings.

Surface Hub:

  • Together mode: view meeting participants in the new Together mode, which brings everyone into a shared virtual space.
  • Large gallery: view up to 49 meeting participants simultaneously in full screen mode,
  • in the new 7×7 video grid.

Single Sign-On (SSO) for Bots

SSO authentication in Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) minimizes the number of times users need to enter their login credentials by silently refreshing the authentication token. If users agree to use your app, they will not have to consent again on another device and will be signed in automatically.

Bot SSO at runtime diagram
Bot SSO at runtime.

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Device management automatic alerting in Teams Admin Center

Device management automatic alerting provides more efficiency in identifying devices issues by triggering notifications that can be turned into an immediate correction action.

Device management automatic alerting in Teams Admin Center

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Shift schedule assistance

Shifts schedule assistance will alert managers if conflicts occur anywhere in the schedule and they will receive conflict warnings when approving schedule change requests. This alerting saves managers time, makes shift scheduling more efficient and reduces inaccuracies that lead to employees not turning up for their shift.

Shift schedule assistance.

Find out more:

Teams (Education)

Insights across classes and spotlight student activity (Education)

New capabilities in Insights helps you as an educator to understand engagement and progress of students over time and across your classes. Now, educators can see high-level trends across classes, like inactive students, active students per day, missed online classes and missed assignments.

And within a class, new spotlight cards show trending student behaviours an educator may want to take action on.

Insights in Microsoft Teams for Education.

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Prevent students from unmuting during class

Meeting organizers and presenters can now prevent attendees from unmuting during their online class and enable specific attendees to unmute when they raise their hands. This can be helpful in class where you want to be in control of who’s speaking when.

PreventUnmute.png
Prevent students from unmuting in Teams meetings.

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Delete meeting recordings in Teams

Now the recording owner (either the person who started the recording or any additional owners named) can delete the recorded class or lecture.

Find out more:

Updated Assignment Settings

Assignment Settings allow educators to set default due times, set preferences on what happens when a new student is added to the class, change the default location where notifications for an assignment will be posted (like an Assignments specific channel), and turn off turn-in celebrations if they’re not age-appropriate for older students.

The Parent /Guardian Weekly Email setting has also moved from the Teams Settings to Assignment Settings. (Settings changes will apply to new assignments created after the updated setting selection has been saved.)

New Assignment Settings.png
New Assignment Settings give educators more control.

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Add your favourite apps to virtual classes and courses

ow you can use some of your favorite apps before, during and after your virtual classes. Educators can incorporate Buncee and Wakelet and have students work together on content, share and discuss topics, and ask questions during class.

Discover How to Add a Buncee as a Tab in Teams Meetings, Ask Questions, and Save them in Buncee.

Find out more:

Teams (Government)

Full screen support in new meetings experience

With full screen mode on Windows the meeting window fills up the whole screen, removing all other screen elements, including the title bar on the top and task bar on the bottom. On Mac OS, full screen mode maximizes the meeting window, and the title bar is hidden. This helps you to reduce distractions and focus your attention. GCC only in November.

Find out more:

OneNote in Teams DoD

You can now add new or existing OneNote Notebooks tab to your Teams channels if you’re a DoD customer. You can also go to Files or add OneNote Personal App to open your OneNote notebooks directly.

Find out more:

Prevent attendees from unmuting in Teams Meetings

Meeting organizers and presenters in the US Government Community Cloud can now prevent attendees from unmuting during the meeting and enable specific attendees to unmute when they raise their hands.

Find out more:


OneDrive

Create shared library in OneDrive

Microsoft are updating the existing experience of creating new Shared Libraries from OneDrive on the web. The end goal being a simpler and easier way to create collaborative spaces for your shared files and folders for team members to access and collaborate on files from anywhere on any device.

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Create a new shared library from OneDrive.

Find out more:

File sharing in Microsoft Teams

Users will now be able to set familiar sharing and access controls directly in Teams with the added option to share a link with a specific private or group chat. This means only people in that chat have access to the shared content. Shared links intelligently reconcile to file name and all sharing follows the admin settings and configured policies. 

teams sharing blog.gif
Sharing integration in Microsoft Teams.

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Known Folder Move in first run experience (FRE)

The new first run experience in OneDrive now allows you to select which Windows known folders you would like to sync to OneDrive. Moving your important folders to OneDrive allows you to have the power of cloud in your most productive folders on Windows.

MicrosoftTeams-image (3).png
Known Folder Move in the first run experience in OneDrive.

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Power Apps

Manage page permissions from Power Apps Portals Studio

The Power Apps team have recently announced a new and improved way to mange web page permissions from within the portals Studio. Now, you can do so with just a toggle to either allow anonymous access for everyone or restrict access to users in certain web roles only.

Page permissions overview
Manage page permissions from Power Apps Portals Studio.

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Azure API Management connector on the Power Platform

Microsoft are introducing Azure API Management connectors as a way to quickly publish Azure API Management backed APIs to the Power Platform for easy discovery and consumption, dramatically reducing the time it takes to create apps connecting to Azure services.

Developers can leverage Microsoft Azure API Management in Dataverse for Teams, which will further amplify their pro-code component and unlock access to any Microsoft cloud hosted Service with just a few clicks.

Developers can now leverage Microsoft Azure API Management in Dataverse for Teams.

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Microsoft Dataverse for Teams – generally available

The Common Data Service has been renamed Microsoft Dataverse. The low-code data platform is now generally available and comes with a suit of embedded Power Platform tools that make it easy to be apps, automate processes and build chatbots without leaving Teams.

Save time with Power Apps in Teams.

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New Layout containers in canvas apps

Now in preview, horizontal and vertical container layout controls help automatically reflow and resize controls within them to enable easy, no expression responsive layouts in canvas apps. These are available in mainline and Teams authoring experiences.

GIF showing adding a text input, gallery, form and icons, and using layout container properties to make a responsive app
New Layout containers in canvas apps make responsive apps easier.

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Power Query and Dataflows in Power Apps updates for November 2020

The Power Apps team have released several new features for Power Query and Dataflows, to help bring data into Microsoft Dataverse.

Diagram View, now in Public Preview is just one of the features coming to Power Query in Power Apps this month.

Find out more:

New rich text editor (RTE) control

The Power Apps team have announced the release of the rich text editor (RTE) control, which can be used for any multi-line or single-line text field across Dynamics 365.

New rich text capabilities in model-driven apps in Power Apps.

Find out more:

Now generally available, the new intelligent search experience in model-driven Power Apps includes a series of usability enhancements and core relevance search improvements to deliver quality results quickly. Usability improvements for things such as the search bar, suggested results, results page enhancements just to name a few.

Suggested results, as you type are just one of several improvements made to the search experience in model-driven Power Apps.

Find out more:


Power Automate

Power Automate Robotic Process Automation (RPA) UI flows Analytics

The Power Automate team have announced there are now two different options to monitor the analytics for RPA UI flows, either from the Power Platform Admin Center or using the Center of Excellence (CoE) Starter Kit.

Usage reports show you which UI flows are being used most so you can get a good idea about your automation inventory.

Find out more:

Power Automate Desktop November 2020 update

November’s Power Automate Desktop update was released last month with several updates for productivity, development and accessibility.

Run flow when designer is open
Running a flow from the console is now possible when its flow designer is open.

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24 new Power Automate connectors!

24 new connectors were released through October 2020 for Power Automate. Too many to list below but some to look out for I think include the Azure Communication Services SMS, Power Apps Notification V2 and AvePoint Cloud Governance.

Find out more:

View app install failures in ISV Studio

New to ISV Studio is a feature which allows SVs to view failures their customers encounter when installing an app via AppSource. Once logged into ISV Studio, a user can see a summary of the recent failures for all their apps on the home page.

View app install failures in ISV Studio.

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AI Builder form processing models train using documents with different layouts

, You can now create a unique form processing model that will extract the same information from up to 100 different document layouts in AI Builder. To get started, just create a new Form Processing model and gather at least five sample forms for each layout that you want to process.

Upload documents
Upload at least five sample forms to get started with the form processing models in AI Builder.

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AI Builder consumption reporting is now available

AI Builder credit consumption reporting lets you choose the date of a report and download an Excel file showing the consumption in your tenant by environment, during the 30 days preceding the selected target date.

Download consumption reports in the Power Platform Admin Center.

Find out more:


Power BI

In Power BI: Power BI Report Server Feature Summary, reports in Teams tabs, reports from SharePoint lists, deployment pipelines API, Power BI in Jupyter notebooks, on-premises data gateway, add/ edit data sources, May feature summary, small multiples, template apps one-click update, new sharing exp, backup/ restore support, goals,

Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

This month’s new version of Power BI Report Server is out now with lots of new enhancements, including a new field list, new and improved shape options, and several visual formatting features.

Find out more: Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs

The Power BI team are making it easier to find Power BI tabs you’ve used in Team channels. An update to the home experience in the Power BI app for Microsoft Teams will allow users to see a new “In Teams” pivot on Power BI home.

View all the tabs you use in Microsoft Teams.
Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs.

Find out more: View all the Power BI tabs you use in Microsoft Teams

Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

The Power BI team have announced integration within SharePoint lists. This experience empowers SharePoint list and Microsoft List users to easily explore their list data with just a few clicks. 

Find out more: Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

Deployment pipelines API

The deployment pipelines tool helps BI teams release content in a fast pace and with higher quality. The Power BI team are releasing a new set of REST APIs that allow developers to automate the deployment of content within an existing deployment pipeline. This includes all the types of deployment that exists today, including selective deployment and deploying all the content in a workspace.

Deployment pipelines API for Power BI.

Find out more: Deployment pipelines – automation and Azure DevOps/GitHub integration

Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

You can now tell compelling data stories with Power BI in Jupyter notebooks. Get your Power BI analytics in a Jupyter notebook with the new powerbiclient Python package.

The new package lets you embed Power BI reports in Jupyter notebooks easily. You’ll be able to export data from visuals in a Power BI report to the Jupyter notebook for in-depth data exploration. You can also filter the report for quick analysis or use bookmarks to apply a saved view.

Embed Power BI in Jupyter GIF
Power BI in Jupyter notebooks.

Find out more: Announcing Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

The Power BI team have announced that we have just released the May update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.82.6).

Find out more: On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

The Power BI team have announced two enhancements to gateway management operations on Power Platform Admin center. We have added the new features listed below:

  • Edit data source
  • Add data source

Find out more: Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

This months Power BI feature summary is out now including a ton of updates for reporting, analytics, modeling and more!

Find out more: Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

The small multiples preview feature has been turned on by default in Power BI Desktop. The updated version of small multiples includes many updates since the feature was first released in preview back in December 2020.

Find out more: Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

Announcing template apps one-click update

Template apps are marketplace offers which provide Power BI Pro or Premium users with out-of-the-box reports for common data sources. Now, when you install a template app update, you can choose to update the organizational app as well, enabling you to update the app, navigate to it directly, and continue your work!

Announcing template apps one-click update.

Find out more: Announcing template apps one-click update

New sharing experience

The Power BI team have announced a new sharing experience that allows sharing reports via links. Previously in the old experience, we supported sharing reports by granting direct access. For the new experience, reports can be shared via links in addition to direct access sharing.

Graphical user interface, text, application Description automatically generated
New sharing experience in Power BI.

Find out more: Announcing the new sharing experience

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets

Now in public preview, Backup and Restore for datasets in Power BI Premium and Premium per User (PPU) lets you use SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS)Analysis Services cmdlets for PowerShell, and other tools to perform backup and restore operations in Power BI via XMLA endpoints in much the same way as you would for tabular models in Azure Analysis Services (Azure AS).

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets.

Find out more: Backup and restore datasets with Power BI Premium (preview)

Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Now in public preview, Query Plan visual will allow you to understand what’s happening under the hood of your query with more details than the Step Folding indicator. While Step Folding indicators provide a “check engine light” for every Power Query user, the new Query Plan provides a much more detailed view for advanced users. Similar to how SQL Server’s “” capability can let you see the optimized form of the Query Plan in Power Query Online will let you see how the Mashup Engine will process your query.

Query plan visual for a simple sql query
Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online.

Find out more: Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Goals in Power BI

Now in public preview, Goals in Power BI Premium is a data-driven, collaborative, and adaptable way to measure key business metrics and goals built directly on top of Power BI. Goals enables teams to easily curate business metrics that matter most and aggregate them in a unified view.

Goals in Microsoft Teams
Goals in Power BI Premium.

Find out more: Introducing Goals in Power BI

New export settings in the Power BI admin portal

The Power BI team have announced new admin settings which provide more granular control over export options in Power BI, and extend export settings to control also export from paginated reports.

Download report – Controls downloading .pbix files and paginated reports.

Find out more:

On-premises data gateway November 2020 update

The November update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.66.8) is out now. Included in this month’s release are updates to the Hive LLAP Connector on Gateway, November’s mashup engine plus lots more.

Find out more:

Power BI November 2020 Feature Summary

Another month, another jam packed Power BI feature summary! This month’s update includes a preview of the new Field List and Model View as well as the Visual Zoom Slider.

Power BI November 2020 Feature Summary.

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Anomaly detection (preview)

Now in preview, anomaly detection helps you enhance your line charts by automatically detecting anomalies in your time series data. It also provides explanations for the anomalies to help with root cause analysis.

Anomaly detection (preview).

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Power BI Premium per user public preview now available

Now, Power BI users have access to all the Power BI Premium capabilities, on a per user basis, for the entire public preview period for free. The public preview of Power BI Premium per user has been enabled in all public tenants that requested priority access, and will be rolling out to all tenants worldwide throughout the month of November.

This is a picture of the capacity settings page
Turn on Power BI Premium per user.

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Paginated Report November 2020 Feature Summary

Several updates have been released for paginated reports in Power BI for November 2020 including new paginated reports samples, in-product parameter updates and more.

Paginated report sample reports in Power BI.

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Related

At-a-glance and key points in sharing emails

When users share Word files, the sharing e-mail will include information about the estimated time it will take a user to read the document as well as a list of the key points in the document. People will now see a short three-bullet point summary of the document, helping them quickly determine if the file is relevant to them.

IZ-RP-25_006_At-a-glance-emails.jpg
At-a-glance and key points in sharing emails.

Find out more:

Capture and share web content in Microsoft Edge

Web capture in Microsoft Edge lets you easily capture and mark up web content, and then save or share it—simply drag a box to select what you want to capture even if you need to scroll. Another improvement to Edge is the a new “My Feed” section within the enterprise new tab page.

To capture content on the web, just click on the pull down menu on the right gutter to select Web capture, select your content and highlight with the Draw function found at the top of your capture then click Share button found in the upper right corner.
Capture and share web content in Microsoft Edge.

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Microsoft 365 monthly update – October 2020

In this month’s update we take an in-depth look at all the recently released features for all the products within Microsoft 365.

SharePointSharePoint Syntex, organization chart web part, admin controls for Lists, Lists – commenting

Teams Tasks in Teams, New file sharing experience, live captions, spotlight, prevent unmuting, advanced production for meetings, read-only Whiteboard, recordings in SharePoint, download participant report, incoming IP video policy, appear offline, language-aware proofing, Teams templates, SharePoint pages app, global notification settings, Off-shift access controls

Teams (Education) Anonymous grading & marking, view all class assignments

Teams (Government)Priority,notifications, read receipts, file viewer upgrades, together mode, large gallery view, meeting notes improvements

Power AppsOffline apps, custom API preview, portals ID provider GA, relevance search API, app usage analytics in ISV studio

Power Automate Desktop update, RPA playbook for SAP, AI Builder capabilities GA, nine new connectors, action analytics, DLP capabilities GA

Power BICertified & promoted reports, Azure Databricks connector, report server feature summary, enhanced compute engine, publish to web, ‘new look’ Power BI service, personalize visuals GA, October 2020 desktop feature summary, on-premises data gateway

RelatedOneDrive widget for iPhone, Productivity score, Forms from the Office mobile app

SharePoint

SharePoint Syntex

Now rolling out worldwide, SharePoint Syntex amplifies human expertise, automates content processing, and transforms content into knowledge. Syntex mainstreams machine teaching, enabling your experts to capture their knowledge about content in AI models they can build with no code.

SharePoint Syntex.

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Organization Chart web part

This web part allows page authors to generate an organization chart based off of a specific individual – just by typing their name. The page author will have the option to determine how many levels up this org chart goes, and as you navigate, you’ll see who reports to who.

IZ-RP-24_003_Org-chart-web-part.jpg
Organization Chart web part.

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Control settings for Microsoft Lists

Some new PowerShell based admin capabilities are being added to Microsoft Lists, including:

  • Control the creation of personal lists – a disable control, and;
  • Manage the built-in, ready-made templates – so that only the ones you wish to be available to your people will appear
IZ-RP-24_004_MSLists-IT-control-templates.jpg
Control settings for Microsoft Lists.

Find out more:

Microsoft Lists – commenting

You will soon be able to add and delete comments on list items. Users can view all comments on a list item and filter between views that show comments or activity related to an item.

Information on how and where comments are stored:

  • Comments follow the permission settings inherent in SharePoint and Microsoft Lists
  • Users with read-only permission can only view comments. Those with list edit permission can make comments as well as delete comments; editing comments is currently not possible
  • Comments are stored in the schema for each list, which is based on the SharePoint storage platform
  • If you are using a classic list template, it will not have this commenting feature
  • Commenting on lists in Teams is not yet available; currently leverage Teams chat for lists in Teams
  • Comments are not indexed by Microsoft Search
IZ-RP-24_006_MSLists_commenting.jpg
Add and delete comments on list items in Microsoft Lists.

Find out more:


Teams

Tasks in Teams

Tasks in Microsoft Teams lets you manage your team tasks from Planner and individual tasks from To Do in your hub for teamwork. Tasks in Teams is now generally available for all non-government tenants.

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Tasks in Microsoft Teams.

Find out more:

New file sharing experience in Teams

You can now create a shareable link for any file stored in Teams and directly set the appropriate permissions. Additionally, you can also set permissions for files stored in SharePoint or OneDrive while composing a private chat or starting a channel conversation.

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New file sharing experience in Teams.

Find out more:

Live Captions with speaker attribution

Microsoft Teams added speaker attribution to live captions so that you can see who is speaking along with what’s being said, making meetings more inclusive and easier to follow along.

Live Captions with speaker attribution in Teams.

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Spotlight an individual video

Presenters can now pin an individual video feed for all attendees to see during a Teams meeting. Once pinned, the individual identified as the spotlight will be the main video shown to all participants.

spotlight.png
Spotlight an individual video participant for all attendees in a Teams meeting.

Find out more:

Prevent attendees from unmuting

Meeting organizers and presenters can now prevent attendees from unmuting during the meeting and enable specific attendees to unmute when they raise their hands.

Prevent Unmute.png

Find out more:

Advanced Production for Teams Meetings

Transform your Teams Meeting into a virtual stage with a new advanced production option for broadcasts. Network Device Interface (NDI) support for Teams allows event producers to convert each participant’s video into a discrete video source that can be used in the video streaming production tool of your choice.

This functionality enables you to use Teams meetings in new ways, including bringing speakers into Together Mode or customized views, to deliver professional broadcasts to the end point of your choice and reach audiences wherever they are.

Find out more:

Microsoft Whiteboard read-only mode

Microsoft Whiteboard read-only mode is available in Teams allowing for more flexibility for you to either present the digital whiteboard in read-only mode, or to allow others to edit and collaborate when given access.

Whiteboard.png
Microsoft Whiteboard read-only mode is available in Teams.

Find out more:

Meeting & Calling recordings stored in OneDrive and SharePoint

Teams meeting and call recordings can now be stored in your OneDrive for Business or in SharePoint, providing the ability to share recordings with guests or external users, access meeting recordings faster, and manage recordings with security and compliance controls available to other file types in Microsoft 365.

Teams Admins can select their recording storage location by updating policies using PowerShell.

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Teams meeting and call recordings can now be stored in your OneDrive for Business or in SharePoint.

Find out more:

Enhancements for downloading participant reports in Teams meetings

Now you can easily download a participant report after the meeting within the meeting chat. Microsoft have also added new data into the report that allows you to better manage your attendance.

image shows download attendance list icon in Microsoft Teams Meeting

Find out more:

Changes in Incoming IP Video policy (New Audio and Video Policies)

Microsoft have extended the Allow IP Video policy to prevent both outgoing and incoming video as needed. Tenant administrators can use this policy to manage bandwidth.  Current policy can only be set to prevent outgoing video.

Find out more:

Appear Offline status

You can now change your presence to “Appear Offline”. This allows you to have full access to Teams while signalling to colleagues that you are unavailable.

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Appear offline status in Teams.

Find out more:

Language-aware proofing

If you write different messages in different languages, you now see spellchecking relevant to the language you use when typing a message in the Teams desktop app.

Find out more:

Teams templates

When creating a new team, you can now choose from a variety of customizable templates including event management, crisis response, as well as industry-specific templates like hospital ward and bank branch. 

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Templates in Teams.

Find out more:

Updated SharePoint pages app in Teams

The updated SharePoint pages app in Teams lets you add published SharePoint pages or lists as a tab in a Teams channel. SharePoint pages let you share ideas using images, video, links, and documents.

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Updated SharePoint Pages app in Microsoft Teams.

Find out more:

Simplified global notification settings

You can now change your notification settings through an updated notification settings section. To access, go to your profile picture > Settings > Notifications.

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New and simplified global notification settings in Teams.

Find out more:

Off-shift access controls

Off-shift access controls allows IT admins the ability to configure Teams to alert you when you are accessing the app on your personal device outside of working hours.

The feature does not require active usage of the Shifts app, but it does require Shifts being configured and schedule data being inside the app; either added natively with Excel import or including workforce management API connectors.

Off shift access picture sub.JPG

Find out more:

Teams (Education)

Anonymous grading and marking in Assignments

Anonymous grading, when enabled in the assignment detail view removes students’ names and avatars are temporarily removed, presenting a random list of students. This allows you as an educator to review work with identities hidden, no shuffling of paper involved.

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Anonymous grading and marking in Assignments.

Find out more:

View assignments across all classes

Now both educators and students can once again view upcoming and turned in assignments by class or view them across all classes. Just visit Assignments in your app bar on the left-hand side of Teams to view assignments across all classes.

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View assignments across all classes in Teams for Education.

Find out more:

Teams (Government)

These features currently rolling out to customers in US Government Community Cloud (GCC), US Government Community Cloud High (GCC-High), and/or United States Department of Defense (DoD).

Priority notifications (GCC, GCC High, and DoD)

Priority notifications alert a recipient of an urgent message on their mobile and desktop devices until a response is received, every two minutes for up to 20 minutes. IT admins can manage this feature as part of messaging policies in Teams.

Find out more:

Read receipts (GCC, GCC High and DoD)

Read receipts in private chats allow senders to know that a message was read by the recipients. IT admins can configure messaging policies from the Microsoft Teams admin center to enable or disable this feature for users.

Find out more:

File viewer upgrades (GCC, GCC High and DoD)

Teams file viewer is being upgraded for Gov clouds from legacy to OneUp for non-Office file types and to unified app for Office file types (Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.

Find out more:

Together mode (GCC)

Together mode, now available in GCC, uses AI segmentation technology in meetings to digitally place participants in a shared background, making it feel like you’re sitting in the same room with everyone else.

Find out more:

Now available in GCC, Large Gallery view provides a new way to view video up to 49 participants at once on a single screen (7×7).

Find out more:

Improvements to meeting notes (GCC, GCC High, and DoD)

Meeting notes now support 100 users by default. Also, if anyone joins your meeting past after it is scheduled and, doesn’t have access to notes, they can now request access from the note’s owner in one click.

Find out more:


Power Apps

Mobile Offline for Power Apps

Makers and administrators can now configure apps to be available offline on a user’s device, and users can continue to complete their tasks against the local cache on their phone even with intermittent or no network connectivity. When the network is re-established, the users’ changes are seamlessly synchronized back to the cloud.

Mobile Offline for Power Apps.

Find out more:

Custom API (preview)

Custom API is a new code-first approach that extends the concept of Custom Actions to provide capabilities that will make life easier for developers.

With Custom API, there is no workflow and some of the limitations of Custom Actions can be avoided providing new capabilities for developers. Instead, Custom APIs require that the developer create a plug-in which will provide the main operation for the message.

Find out more:

Power Apps portals simplified identity provider configuration

Now generally available, Microsoft are introducing a simplified experience to create and manage authentication settings and identity provider configuration. The experience aims to provide better discovery of supported providers, in-app guidance for makers / administrators to do this quickly and reduce common configuration errors. 

Simplified identity provider configuration in PowerApps portals.

Find out more:

Relevance Search API, now available for Common Data Service (CDS) environments provides access to exciting new search capabilities in environments with Relevance Search enabled. Three types of search experiences can be powered by the API, including; search results page, Suggestions-as-you-type and autocomplete.

Suggestions
Suggestions using Relevance Search API.

Find out more:

App usage analytics in ISV Studio

Now in public preview, app usage analytics now allows ISV to monitor your published applications. With the release of this feature, in addition to seeing the total number of installations a user will now be able to see the Monthly, Weekly and Daily active usage of their app.

App usage analytics in ISV Studio

Find out more:


Power Automate

Power Automate Desktop update – October 2020

The Power Automate Desktop October 2020 update is out now and includes several new productivity enhancements.

Error notifications are available in the console
Error notifications are available in the console.

Find out more:

RPA Playbook for SAP GUI Automation with Power Automate

The Power Automate team have released the first enterprise automation playbook for Microsoft Power Automate – SAP GUI Automation.

The playbook show you how to apply simple to advanced, no-code to pro-code SAP automation techniques, leveraging Power Automate, UI flows and the recently announced public preview of Power Automate Desktop.

Basic SAP automation use case
Sample Use Case API & RPA based flows.

Find out more:

New AI Builder capabilities generally available

Microsoft have announced several AI Builder preview model types are now generally available. These include: explicitly tag fields in form processing, text translation, predict a number, realtime prediction, receipt processing (preview) plus many more.

Explicitly tag fields in form processing.

Find out more:

Nine new connectors in Power Automate

Nine brand new connectors were released for Power Automate through September 2020, taking the total number of connectors to 400! Here’s what was released:

  • Azure AD Identity Protection – Azure AD Identity Protection is a tool that allows organizations to discover, investigate, and remediate identity-based risks in their environment.
  • CDK Drive Customer – CDK Drive Customer is an API published by CDK Global to help you manage your CDK Drive Dealer Management System (DMS) customer records.
  • CDK Drive Service Vehicles – This connector will help you maintain vehicle details on the service vehicle record and keep it up to date.
  • Cloudmersive Video and Media – Cloudmersive Video and Media Service was created to enable customers to effortlessly convert videos, audio files, and media between different file formats at scale and on-demand. 
  • GetAccept – The GetAccept sales enablement platform can help sales teams close more deals faster with AI powered dealscore and sales coaching, coupled with sales automation and e-signing. 
  • IN-D Payables – IN-D Payables is an AI-based invoice processing bot that can smartly extract things that matter most, like PO number, invoice number, and more, from millions of invoices in no time. 
  • Microsoft 365 compliance – Microsoft 365 compliance solutions help you discover, protect, and govern your data, address regulations and standards, and mitigate insider risks. 
  • MotaWord Translations – MotaWord enables professional translation of your documents into 95+ languages with blazing speed. It’s a pioneer of collaborative translation and works with 18000+ professional translators to empower your business in the international stage.
  • Nitro – Nitro Sign is an eSigning tool that allows you to get your documents electronically signed faster and more securely.

Find out more:

Action analytics in Power Automate

Action analytics is an update to flow analytics that will make it easier for users to understand how many actions your flow is executing every day.

For flows with a lot of daily activity this feature helps users understand how many actions are running each day.

Introducing action analytics in Power Automate.

Find out more:

Data Loss Prevention capabilities now generally available

A range of new Power Platform Data Loss Prevention (DLP) policy capabilities are now generally available, including; a new enhanced user interface in the Power Platform admin center for defining DLP policies, which additionally enables the ability to block connectors as well as user interface support for including HTTP Connectors in DLP policies.

Find out more:


Power BI

In Power BI: Power BI Report Server Feature Summary, reports in Teams tabs, reports from SharePoint lists, deployment pipelines API, Power BI in Jupyter notebooks, on-premises data gateway, add/ edit data sources, May feature summary, small multiples, template apps one-click update, new sharing exp, backup/ restore support, goals,

Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

This month’s new version of Power BI Report Server is out now with lots of new enhancements, including a new field list, new and improved shape options, and several visual formatting features.

Find out more: Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs

The Power BI team are making it easier to find Power BI tabs you’ve used in Team channels. An update to the home experience in the Power BI app for Microsoft Teams will allow users to see a new “In Teams” pivot on Power BI home.

View all the tabs you use in Microsoft Teams.
Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs.

Find out more: View all the Power BI tabs you use in Microsoft Teams

Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

The Power BI team have announced integration within SharePoint lists. This experience empowers SharePoint list and Microsoft List users to easily explore their list data with just a few clicks. 

Find out more: Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

Deployment pipelines API

The deployment pipelines tool helps BI teams release content in a fast pace and with higher quality. The Power BI team are releasing a new set of REST APIs that allow developers to automate the deployment of content within an existing deployment pipeline. This includes all the types of deployment that exists today, including selective deployment and deploying all the content in a workspace.

Deployment pipelines API for Power BI.

Find out more: Deployment pipelines – automation and Azure DevOps/GitHub integration

Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

You can now tell compelling data stories with Power BI in Jupyter notebooks. Get your Power BI analytics in a Jupyter notebook with the new powerbiclient Python package.

The new package lets you embed Power BI reports in Jupyter notebooks easily. You’ll be able to export data from visuals in a Power BI report to the Jupyter notebook for in-depth data exploration. You can also filter the report for quick analysis or use bookmarks to apply a saved view.

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Power BI in Jupyter notebooks.

Find out more: Announcing Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

The Power BI team have announced that we have just released the May update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.82.6).

Find out more: On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

The Power BI team have announced two enhancements to gateway management operations on Power Platform Admin center. We have added the new features listed below:

  • Edit data source
  • Add data source

Find out more: Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

This months Power BI feature summary is out now including a ton of updates for reporting, analytics, modeling and more!

Find out more: Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

The small multiples preview feature has been turned on by default in Power BI Desktop. The updated version of small multiples includes many updates since the feature was first released in preview back in December 2020.

Find out more: Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

Announcing template apps one-click update

Template apps are marketplace offers which provide Power BI Pro or Premium users with out-of-the-box reports for common data sources. Now, when you install a template app update, you can choose to update the organizational app as well, enabling you to update the app, navigate to it directly, and continue your work!

Announcing template apps one-click update.

Find out more: Announcing template apps one-click update

New sharing experience

The Power BI team have announced a new sharing experience that allows sharing reports via links. Previously in the old experience, we supported sharing reports by granting direct access. For the new experience, reports can be shared via links in addition to direct access sharing.

Graphical user interface, text, application Description automatically generated
New sharing experience in Power BI.

Find out more: Announcing the new sharing experience

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets

Now in public preview, Backup and Restore for datasets in Power BI Premium and Premium per User (PPU) lets you use SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS)Analysis Services cmdlets for PowerShell, and other tools to perform backup and restore operations in Power BI via XMLA endpoints in much the same way as you would for tabular models in Azure Analysis Services (Azure AS).

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets.

Find out more: Backup and restore datasets with Power BI Premium (preview)

Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Now in public preview, Query Plan visual will allow you to understand what’s happening under the hood of your query with more details than the Step Folding indicator. While Step Folding indicators provide a “check engine light” for every Power Query user, the new Query Plan provides a much more detailed view for advanced users. Similar to how SQL Server’s “” capability can let you see the optimized form of the Query Plan in Power Query Online will let you see how the Mashup Engine will process your query.

Query plan visual for a simple sql query
Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online.

Find out more: Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Goals in Power BI

Now in public preview, Goals in Power BI Premium is a data-driven, collaborative, and adaptable way to measure key business metrics and goals built directly on top of Power BI. Goals enables teams to easily curate business metrics that matter most and aggregate them in a unified view.

Goals in Microsoft Teams
Goals in Power BI Premium.

Find out more: Introducing Goals in Power BI

Certified and Promoted reports and apps

With the rise of the need for standardized, authoritative data across organisations, the Power BI team recently released endorsements for datasets and dataflows. This has now been extended to provide similar endorsement capabilities for reports and apps.

Certified and Promoted reports and apps in Power BI.

Find out more:

Power BI Connector to Azure Databricks Public Preview

In September, the Power BI team announced the availability of an enhanced Connector to Azure Databricks in Power BI Desktop in public preview. Now the Azure Databricks connector has also been deployed to the Power BI service.

Azure Databricks is an Apache Spark-based analytics platform optimized for the Microsoft Azure cloud services platform. It can consume data at cloud scale from multiple data sources such as Azure Blob Storage, Azure Data Lake Storage, and Azure Cosmos DB. And thanks to the enhanced Azure Databricks connector, you can now deliver breakthrough insights at cloud scale in a self-service fashion in Power BI.

Power BI Connector to Azure Databricks Public Preview.

Find out more:

Power BI Report Server October 2020 Feature Summary

With October’s Power BI report server feature summary, several new features have been released including the modern ribbon, slicer improvements, enhanced dataset metadata and more.

Modern ribbon in Power BI Desktop.

Find out more:

Enhanced compute engine now enabled by default

To improve the scale of dataflow analysis in Power BI, Microsoft are turning on the enhanced compute engine for all new dataflows by default in all new capacities provisioned. This premium dataflow feature allows you to:

  • Speed up refresh operations when computed entities or linked entities are involved
  • Enable DQ connectivity over dataflows leveraging the compute engine
  • Achieve improved performance in the transformation steps of dataflows when entities are cached within the compute engine

Find out more:

Power BI Publish to web updates

The Power BI team have announced several updates to the Power BI publish to web functionality including improved web dialog experiences, ability to add a placeholder image, a new data refresh experience plus many more.

New publish to web dialog and experiences.

Find out more:

The ‘new look’ of the Power BI service begins rolling out soon

All the improvements of the ‘new look’, from navigation updates to the simplified action bar for reports and dashboards, begins rolling out next week and will be generally available to all tenants and users by early November.

new simplified report action bar in the Power BI service
The ‘new look’ of the Power BI service begins rolling out soon.

Find out more:

Personalize Visuals general availability

Personalize visuals are now generally available, this new feature can can empower your end-users to explore and personalize visuals all within the consumption view of a report. For example, your end-user can change a measure, a dimension, or the visualization itself.

Personalize Visuals in Power BI.

Find out more:

Power BI October 2020 Feature Summary

Several updates are included in this months Power BI feature summary including new visuals, the introduction of canvas watermarks, new icons plus much more.

Power BI October 2020 Feature Summary.

Find out more:

On-premises data gateway October 2020 update is now available

The October update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.63.6) is now available. Updates include OAuth Support for the gateway, Google BigQuery Connector on Gateway, Performance Monitoring On By Default plus many more.

Google BigQuery Connector on Gateway.

Find out more:


Related

OneDrive widget for iPhone

ow, when you run iOS14 on your device, you can add a OneDrive widget to your iPhone home screen. The widget displays your photo memories “on this day” across previous years. 

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OneDrive widget on iOS14.

Find out more:

Productivity Score

Microsoft Productivity Score can help measure and improve how your organisation uses Microsoft 365 by giving you visibility into how your organization works, insights to identify where you can make improvements, and actions you can take to update skills and systems so that everyone can do their best work.

Screenshot of Teamwork Productivity Score
Microsoft Productivity Score.

Find out more:

Create Forms from the Office mobile app

You can now easily create, share, and analyze your forms, alongside your other Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files, all from the Office mobile app.

Forms creators can easily create and send out a form, and from the “Home” page of the app, quickly check to see the number of respondents and insights from the information collected. 

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Create forms easily on-the-go in the Office mobile app.

Find out more:


Microsoft 365 update – September 2020

In this month’s update we take an in-depth look at all the recently released features for all the products within Microsoft 365.

SharePointGhosting drag & drop web parts, expiring guest access, Power BI results in search

Teams Performance updates, large gallery view, new meeting pre-join experience, reverse number lookup, Teams phones updates, Teams Rooms updates, reflect extension, Lists in Teams, Whiteboard updates, Walkie Talkie, Teams – RealWear, custom praise badges, share share from chat policy

Teams (Education) “Only Me” admin policy, SEL stickers, presenter mode in Whiteboard, Focus mode, Assignments grading history, SMART learning suite,

Teams (GCC, GCC-High, DoD)Instant channel meetings GCC, custom apps & sideloading GCC, DLP for Teams in Gov Clouds

OneDrive New widget for iOS, updates to comment notifications, mute comment notifications, Surface Duo app

Power Apps Power BI as system dashboard, GitHub actions (preview), Power Platform in Teams, new solution import experience & environment variables

Power Automate 9 new connectors, Power Automate Desktop, UI Flows August update, connection references

Power BIOn-prem data gateway Sept 20 update, new experiences for Teams, feature summary, deployment pipelines, smart narrative, Power BI HoloLens 2, ‘new look’ updates, Power Automate actions, paginated reports updates

Power Virtual AgentsPVA in Teams, health information compliant bots

Project Cortex SharePoint Syntex

SharePoint

“Ghosting” drag & drop effect for web parts

When you are in page edit mode and you choose to move a web part from one portion of the page to another, you’ll now see a ghosting effect of the web part you grabbed, as a reminder of what you’re moving.

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New ghosting effect when dragging & dropping web parts in modern SharePoint pages.

Find out more:

Manage default policy duration for expiring guest access

Rolling out now, admins will be able to create policies to revoke guest access to SharePoint sites and individual OneDrive’s after a defined period of time. Site admins will also receive notifications via email of upcoming guest user access expirations.

NOTE: this policy does not apply to guests who already have access to sites, documents, and files before this setting is applied. After a guest loses access to a site, any user with the ability to share content externally can re-invite the guest to each document or item as needed.

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Expiring guest access for SharePoint and OneDrive.

Find out more:

Power BI results in Microsoft Search

Microsoft Search in SharePoint and Office.com will now include results from Power BI. This means search results will show Power BI reports, dashboards, and workspaces, which can be important content to be discovered.

NOTE: Microsoft Search administrators can disable this feature in Microsoft Search settings through the Microsoft 365 admin center.

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Power BI results in Microsoft Search.

Find out more:


Teams

Updates to Teams performance

Microsoft have increased their efforts to improve the performance of Teams to allow it to continue to scale across devices and differing levels of internet connectivity. Here’s a summary of the updates:

  • Offline support in desktop
  • Improved desktop launch time
  • Video rendering optimizations in desktop
  • Battery life optimizations in iOS
  • Low bandwidth optimizations for Android

Find out more:

This feature was rolled out as part of the new multi-window experience. In order to take advantage of this new view, users will need to turn on the new multi-window meeting experience.

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Large gallery view in Teams is now available in the new multi-window experience.

Find out more:

New Teams meeting pre-join experience

Microsoft have improved the pre-join meeting experience for Teams meetings including easier discovery of audio, video, and device configurations before joining a meeting.

Find out more:

Reverse Number Lookup Enhancements

As part of the latest enhancements to reverse number lookup in Teams, the caller name will also show up in your activity feed, call history, and voicemail.

Find out more:

New features for Microsoft Teams phones

Microsoft have announced a series of new feature updates to Microsoft Teams phones that are available now in version 1449/1.0.94.2020071702:

  • Redesigned Home Screen: A new, simple view providing up-to-date information about your calling and meeting activity, reminders of your current and upcoming meetings, and access to quick actions like replying to missed calls and listening to voicemail.
  • Customize Quick Access to Apps: Set the default views for your phone by pinning and re-ordering your apps suited to your needs.
  • Auto accept incoming meeting and call requests: Teams phones can now be provisioned to automatically accept incoming meetings nudges and calls, allowing instant, hands free connection to incoming join requests.
  • Dedicated Teams button: new and upcoming Teams phones will have a dedicated Teams button to quickly launch Teams app on the device home screen.

Find out more:

Teams Rooms updates

Updates for both the Windows and Android versions of the Teams Rooms app, including:

Microsoft Teams Rooms on Windows, app version 4.6.20.0 now available

  • Live captions: Meeting participants joining from a Teams Room can now view live captions turned in a Teams meeting. In-room participants can also turn live captions on or off from the center of room console. Captions will appear at the bottom of the meeting experience shown on the front of room display.
  • 3×3 gallery view: Meeting participants can now view up to nine participants in the meeting gallery view, shown on the front of room display.
  • Direct Guest Join with Zoom Rooms (Preview): Teams Rooms and Zoom Room devices can now connect to each other’s meeting services via embedded web technologies. This will reduce the friction you experience when trying to join calls from external partners or clients who may not be using the same meeting service.

Microsoft Teams Rooms on Android, app version 1.0.94.2020062501 now available

  • Pin video: Now you can pin the video stream of a meeting participant from the Teams Rooms device, keeping the pinned user’s video visible in the gallery. This “pinned view” is only applied to the gallery view in the meeting room and not to other meeting participant’s views.
  • Support for structured meeting role and roster controls: Allows meeting organizers to assign meeting roles (presenter and attendee) from the Teams Rooms experience, enabling participants to take specific actions associated with those roles (e.g. mute participants, present content, etc.)

Find out more:

Reflect messaging extension

Managers, leaders or teachers now have an easy way to check in with how their team or students are feeling — either in general, or about a specific topic like work-life balance, the status of a project, current events, or a change within the organization.

IT or Teams admins can install the Reflect extension from GitHub and make it available to their users in the message extension menu.

Reflect messaging extension for Microsoft Teams.

Find out more:

Microsoft Lists in Teams

Last month Microsoft announced the general availability of Microsoft Lists. Now, Lists can be created directly in Teams as a channel tab.

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Microsoft Lists in Teams.

Find out more:

Microsoft Whiteboard improvements

Microsoft Whiteboard is integrated within every Teams meeting, enabling meeting participants to join in. Recent updates include the ability to add sticky notes and text to a canvas, making it easier to contribute if you’re using a device without a digital pen, and added the ability to move and re-order objects on the canvas through a simple drag and drop gesture.

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Improvements to Microsoft Whiteboard.

Find out more:

Walkie Talkie for Android

Walkie Talkie is a push-to-talk experience that enables instant and secure voice communication over the cloud, turning your personal- or company-owned Android smartphones and tablets into a walkie-talkie. It reduces the number of devices you need to have while providing clear communication free of radio interference, static and no distance limitations in range. 

walkietalkieandroid1.gif

Find out more:

Teams and RealWear integration

Integrations between Teams and RealWear allow field workers to remain 100% hands-free using a voice-controlled user interface while maintaining situational awareness in loud and hazardous environments.

realwear.png
Teams – RealWear integration.

Find out more:

Customizable Praise Badges

You can now can create customized Praise badges to express their culture and values when recognizing successes and fostering comradery. Praise badges can help improve workplace culture and job satisfaction, from corporate headquarters to Firstline Workers. 

CustomPraiseBadges.png
Create a custom praise badge in the Teams admin center.

Find out more:

Screen share from chat policy governance

Screen share from chat allows you to immediately start sharing your screen in a one-to-one or group chat. This entry point was previously governed by the AllowPrivateCalling policy. If this policy was disabled, users weren’t able to screen share from chat.

This will now be governed by the ScreenSharingMode policy.

Find out more:

Teams (Education)

“Only Me” Admin Policy for all Organizer Meeting Options

IT Admins can apply a policy that defaults “Only Me” to allow only educators (or the meeting organizer) to enter the meeting and keep students in the lobby until the educator admits them. 

Find out more:

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) connections in the digital classroom

Now with Social and Emotional Learning badges in Praise and new SEL sticker pack for OneNote, educators can encourage the development of these critical life skills while in a remote or hybrid learning environment. 

NOTE: The SEL sticker pack for OneNote is available now, SEL badges in Praise coming soon.

praise badges.png
Social and Emotional Learning badges in Praise and the new SEL sticker pack for OneNote.

Find out more:

“Presenter” mode in Whiteboard

Educators now have the option to choose a presenter mode in Microsoft Whiteboard in Teams. This allows for more flexibility to either present the digital whiteboard with Read-Only access for students, or to allow (or adjust) student access when it’s time to have the whole class collaborate.

whiteboard.png
“Presenter” mode in Microsoft Whiteboard.

Find out more:

Focus mode

Now students will be able to hone-in on the materials being presented in their online class. When a teacher is sharing their screen, students can choose “Focus Mode” from the “…” menu so that only the content shows without any distracting videos.

Find out more:

Assignments Grading History

See all of the submission and return history of Assignments in Teams, all in one place. Easily track Assignments over time.

Full view of Grades tab
View Assignment Grade History in Teams.

Find out more:

SMART Learning Suite

The SMART Learning Suite app gives teachers the power to create, edit, deliver, manage and share interactive lessons directly within Microsoft Teams, enhancing instruction from the platform and workflows they already use.

SMART.png
SMART learning suite in Microsoft Teams.

Find out more:

Teams (GCC, GCC-High & DoD)

New experience for launching instant channel meetings for GCC

Meet Now buttons in Teams channels have a new home. You will soon find them in the Channel header where you can easily find and launch the meeting.

Find out more:

Custom Apps and Sideloading in GCC

Sideloading and custom (line-of-business) apps are now available in GCC. GCC tenant administrators can decide whether to upload a custom app to their tenant environment and publish it to their tenant app catalog.

Find out more:

Teams Data loss prevention for Government Clouds

Data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities in Microsoft 365 government clouds will be extended to include Microsoft Teams chat and channel messages, including private channel messages.

If your organization has DLP, you can now define policies that prevent people from sharing sensitive information in a Microsoft Teams channel or chat session.

Find out more:


OneDrive

New OneDrive widget & home screen for iOS

A new home screen for the OneDrive iOS launched this month. The new home experience will help you quickly pick up where you left off on recent and offline files and easily re-discover memories from the past.

OneDrive widget & home screen for iOS.

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Comment notification updates

Users who create or upload Word, Excel, PowerPoint or any other type of file to OneDrive or SharePoint will now get email notifications whenever someone else leaves a comment on their file.

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Mute comment notifications

Microsoft are enabling users to be able to turn off comment notifications for individual files in the details pane. This feature is also incorporated in sharing emails as an actionable message action.

mute.png
Mute comment notifications in OneDrive.

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OneDrive app for Surface Duo

With the Surface Duo now generally available the OneDrive app is now also available for the device. Surface Duo and OneDrive enhances multitasking with drag-and-drop functionality as well as the built-in PDF editor for book-like reading and mark-up experience.

Drag and drop.gif
OneDrive app for Surface Duo.

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Power Apps

Power BI embedded as system dashboard in model-driven apps (preview)

Power BI embedded as a system dashboard in the Power Apps model-driven app is now in public preview. This enables adding a reference to an online Power BI report or dashboard as a system dashboard. 

Power BI embedded as system dashboard in model-driven apps.

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Power Platform GitHub actions now in preview

Now in public preview, GitHub actions will allow developers to create their own software development lifecycle (SDLC) workflows when building Apps, Flows, Virtual agents, connectors and other assets backed by the Common Data Service on the Power platform.

GitHub actions now in public preview.

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Customize Teams with built-in Power Platform capabilities (preview)

Teams customers can make and use custom tabs, personal apps, chat bots, and more using a powerful onboard data platform and approachable low-code tools from the Power Platform.

The public preview of embedded Power Platform capabilities in Microsoft Teams is now open.

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New solution import experience with connections and environment variables

The Power Apps team have announced a broad set of new ALM capabilities for importing solutions. In addition to these modern new interfaces, now you can establish connections as well as set values for environment variables while importing solutions.

Environment variables are now generally available.

New solution import experience with connections and environment variables.

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Power Automate

Nine new connectors released in September 2020

Last month, Power Automate saw the introduction of nine brand new connectors to the connector line-up, taking the total to 400 out of the box connectors!

  • Azure AD Identity Protection: Azure AD Identity Protection is a tool that allows organizations to discover, investigate, and remediate identity-based risks in their environment.
  • CDK Drive Customer: CDK Drive Customer is an API published by CDK Global and can be used it to search, view and update existing records, or create new customers.
  • CDK Drive Service Vehicles: CDK Drive Service Vehicles is an API published by CDK Global and the connector will help you maintain vehicle details on the service vehicle record and keep it up to date.
  • Cloudmersive Video and Media: The Cloudmersive Video and Media Service was created to enable customers to effortlessly convert videos, audio files, and media between different file formats at scale and on-demand.
  • GetAccept: The GetAccept sales enablement platform can help sales teams close more deals faster with AI powered dealscore and sales coaching, coupled with sales automation and e-signing. 
  • IN-D Payables: IN-D Payables is an AI-based invoice processing bot that can smartly extract things that matter most, like PO number, invoice number, and more, from millions of invoices in no time. 
  • Microsoft 365 compliance: Microsoft 365 compliance solutions help you discover, protect, and govern your data, address regulations and standards, and mitigate insider risks. 
  • MotaWord Translations: MotaWord enables professional translation of your documents into 95+ languages with blazing speed. It’s a pioneer of collaborative translation and works with 18000+ professional translators to empower your business in the international stage.
  • Nitro: Nitro Sign is an eSigning tool that allows you to get your documents electronically signed faster and more securely.

Find out more:

Power Automate Desktop

Announced at Microsoft Ignite 2020 but now in preview, Power Automate Desktop enables coders and non-coders alike to automate processes and tasks across desktop and web applications, bringing the value of Softomotive capabilities directly into Microsoft Power Automate.

How to automate desktop-based tasks with Power Automate Desktop.

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UI Flows August 2020 update

Several updates are included in the August 2020 release of UI Flows, including:

  • Cancel UI flow runs that are in progress
  • Add and edit Image Recognition actions that are part of a Remote Desktop or Citrix recording
  • Native support for recording actions and data from SAP
  • Do Until feature to have more control over how UI flows execute
Add and edit Image Recognition actions that are part of a Remote Desktop or Citrix recording.

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Connection References

Now in public preview, Connection References is a new concept that makes it easier for customers to maintain a level of abstraction between flows and the connections used by them. Connection references are particularly useful when moving flows across environments, updating flow definitions, automating deployment pipelines for secure, and healthy Application Lifecycle Management.

Example of Flows with Connection References.

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Power BI

In Power BI: Power BI Report Server Feature Summary, reports in Teams tabs, reports from SharePoint lists, deployment pipelines API, Power BI in Jupyter notebooks, on-premises data gateway, add/ edit data sources, May feature summary, small multiples, template apps one-click update, new sharing exp, backup/ restore support, goals,

Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

This month’s new version of Power BI Report Server is out now with lots of new enhancements, including a new field list, new and improved shape options, and several visual formatting features.

Find out more: Power BI Report Server May 2021 Feature Summary

Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs

The Power BI team are making it easier to find Power BI tabs you’ve used in Team channels. An update to the home experience in the Power BI app for Microsoft Teams will allow users to see a new “In Teams” pivot on Power BI home.

View all the tabs you use in Microsoft Teams.
Power BI reports in Microsoft Teams tabs.

Find out more: View all the Power BI tabs you use in Microsoft Teams

Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

The Power BI team have announced integration within SharePoint lists. This experience empowers SharePoint list and Microsoft List users to easily explore their list data with just a few clicks. 

Find out more: Quickly create reports from SharePoint lists

Deployment pipelines API

The deployment pipelines tool helps BI teams release content in a fast pace and with higher quality. The Power BI team are releasing a new set of REST APIs that allow developers to automate the deployment of content within an existing deployment pipeline. This includes all the types of deployment that exists today, including selective deployment and deploying all the content in a workspace.

Deployment pipelines API for Power BI.

Find out more: Deployment pipelines – automation and Azure DevOps/GitHub integration

Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

You can now tell compelling data stories with Power BI in Jupyter notebooks. Get your Power BI analytics in a Jupyter notebook with the new powerbiclient Python package.

The new package lets you embed Power BI reports in Jupyter notebooks easily. You’ll be able to export data from visuals in a Power BI report to the Jupyter notebook for in-depth data exploration. You can also filter the report for quick analysis or use bookmarks to apply a saved view.

Embed Power BI in Jupyter GIF
Power BI in Jupyter notebooks.

Find out more: Announcing Power BI in Jupyter notebooks

On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

The Power BI team have announced that we have just released the May update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.82.6).

Find out more: On-premises data gateway May 2021 update is now available

Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

The Power BI team have announced two enhancements to gateway management operations on Power Platform Admin center. We have added the new features listed below:

  • Edit data source
  • Add data source

Find out more: Add and Edit Power BI data sources on Power Platform Admin Center

Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

This months Power BI feature summary is out now including a ton of updates for reporting, analytics, modeling and more!

Find out more: Power BI May 2021 Feature Summary

Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

The small multiples preview feature has been turned on by default in Power BI Desktop. The updated version of small multiples includes many updates since the feature was first released in preview back in December 2020.

Find out more: Small Multiples (Preview) – Roadmap Updates

Announcing template apps one-click update

Template apps are marketplace offers which provide Power BI Pro or Premium users with out-of-the-box reports for common data sources. Now, when you install a template app update, you can choose to update the organizational app as well, enabling you to update the app, navigate to it directly, and continue your work!

Announcing template apps one-click update.

Find out more: Announcing template apps one-click update

New sharing experience

The Power BI team have announced a new sharing experience that allows sharing reports via links. Previously in the old experience, we supported sharing reports by granting direct access. For the new experience, reports can be shared via links in addition to direct access sharing.

Graphical user interface, text, application Description automatically generated
New sharing experience in Power BI.

Find out more: Announcing the new sharing experience

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets

Now in public preview, Backup and Restore for datasets in Power BI Premium and Premium per User (PPU) lets you use SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS)Analysis Services cmdlets for PowerShell, and other tools to perform backup and restore operations in Power BI via XMLA endpoints in much the same way as you would for tabular models in Azure Analysis Services (Azure AS).

Support for backup and restore of Power BI datasets.

Find out more: Backup and restore datasets with Power BI Premium (preview)

Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Now in public preview, Query Plan visual will allow you to understand what’s happening under the hood of your query with more details than the Step Folding indicator. While Step Folding indicators provide a “check engine light” for every Power Query user, the new Query Plan provides a much more detailed view for advanced users. Similar to how SQL Server’s “” capability can let you see the optimized form of the Query Plan in Power Query Online will let you see how the Mashup Engine will process your query.

Query plan visual for a simple sql query
Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online.

Find out more: Query Plan Visual for Power Query Online

Goals in Power BI

Now in public preview, Goals in Power BI Premium is a data-driven, collaborative, and adaptable way to measure key business metrics and goals built directly on top of Power BI. Goals enables teams to easily curate business metrics that matter most and aggregate them in a unified view.

Goals in Microsoft Teams
Goals in Power BI Premium.

Find out more: Introducing Goals in Power BI

On-premises data gateway September 2020 update

The September 2020 update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.58.6) includes updates for the Mashup Engine, .Net Framework, dprecation for Kerberos SSO and more.

Find out more:

New Power BI experiences in Microsoft Teams

The Power BI team have announced new Power BI integrations for Microsoft Teams to make it easier to discover and use data within your organization, including:

  • New Power BI App for Teams that helps you view and work with Power BI content
  • New Teams Search experience to find and open Power BI content
  • New Teams Chat experiences to quickly find and share Power BI content
Using the Power BI app for Microsoft Teams to view a report, find an insight, and start a chat about the data with a colleague.

Find out more:

Power BI September 2020 Feature Summary

Several updates in this month’s feature summary including updates for analytics, reporting, mobile, service, modeling, data connectivity plus many more!

Find out more:

Deployment pipelines general availability

Deployment pipelines is now generally available, with some new additional features: incremental refresh support and the creation of pipelines from the workspace page.

Deployment pipelines in Power BI.

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Smart narrative

Now in preview, smart narrative visualizations help you quickly summarize visuals and reports by providing relevant out-of-the-box insights that are customizable.

Using this feature creators can add narratives to their report to address key takeaways, point out trends, edit the language, and format it to fit a specific audience.

Smart narratives in Power BI.

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Power BI App for mixed reality now available for HoloLens 2

The Power BI app for mixed reality is now available, running on HoloLens 2 it is capable of:

  • A unique visual display system which makes holograms even more vibrant and realistic.
  • Improved performance.
  • Completely refreshed ways of interacting with holograms.
Power BI app for mixed reality.

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‘New look’ experience updates

More changes are being made to the ‘new look’ of the Power BI service, including navigation updates to give you more space to work with your content, provided options for report authors to configure their page navigation, updated the action bar for quicker access to common actions, and more.

A new, simplified action bar within Power BI is just one of the ‘new look’ updates.

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Power Automate actions for Power BI exports

Two new actions are available for the Power BI connector in Power Automate. Now, you may easily leverage the Power BI export API for either Power BI reports or paginated reports in your Power Automate workflows.

These new actions make it easy for anyone to quickly export their Power BI content in a variety of supported formats and scenarios.

Picture of Power BI actions for Power Automate
Export to file for Power BI Reports (preview) and Export to file for Paginated Reports (preview) are available now.

Find out more:

Power BI Paginated Reports August 2020 Updates

Several updates are being rolled out for paginated reports in Power BI, including new authentication type support for Azure SQL DB and Azure Synapse, Common Data Service data source support, improved multi-value parameters support for DAX and more.

Relational Query Designer
Common Data Service data source support.

Find out more:


Power Virtual Agents

Power Virtual Agents within Microsoft Teams (public preview)

The Power Virtual Agents team have announced the Public Preview of deep integration between Power Virtual Agents and Microsoft Teams. Users can easily create their own digital assistants within Teams and make them available to their colleagues to chat with.

And better yet, this functionality is included with your existing Teams licenses and the bot creation experience is embedded within Teams itself – empowering all of your employees to easily build and share bots within Teams.

Power Virtual Agents within Teams (public preview).

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Power Virtual Agents is HIPAA, SOC, ISO, and CSA compliant

Power Virtual Agents is now covered under HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) BAA (Business Associate Agreement) and is a Core Online Service in the Microsoft Online Services Terms (OST).

Power Virtual Agents also acquired System and Organization Controls (SOC), International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) certifications which are required by enterprise customers.

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Project Cortex

SharePoint Syntex – General Availability

The first product from Project Cortex – SharePoint Syntex is now generally available. SharePoint Syntex uses advanced AI and machine teaching to amplify human expertise, automate content processing, and transform content into knowledge.

SharePoint Syntex.

Find out more:


Resources

Microsoft 365 update – August 2020

In this month’s Microsoft 365 update we take an in-depth look at all the recently released features for all the products within Microsoft 365.

SharePoint Azure CDN caching for video, download site usage data, updated list & list item sharing, improved image columns, move files & keep sharing, education site templates

Teams Tasks in Teams, New features in Whiteboard, Real time presence, meeting recording storage, optimized Teams experience VMware, new Teams devices, S4B PowerShell consolidation, Teams App Submission API

Teams (Education)SDS & OneNote Class Notebook, channel specific content spaces, Teacher Only area, detect/ delete inappropriate messages, education apps

Teams (Government)organizer joins meeting directly, instant channel meetings experience, improved meeting join launcher, prevent upload of profile picture policy

Power Apps Troubleshoot Forms in a Model Driven App, improvements to Cascading Merge Transactions, Power Apps checker now analyzes modern web syntax, Power Platform Build Tools GA

Power Automate New “when an item or file is modified” trigger, Delay, Command-Line Arguments &Copy-Paste UI Flows, flows from any message in Teams, 7 new connectors

Power BIOn-premises data gateway, AutoML support for PQO, data protection updates, mobile app headers/ navigation, block classic workspace creation, multiple data lakes support

Power Virtual AgentsShare your bot

Related Provision users to Azure AD from SAP SuccessFactors, Edge improvements, FastTrack streamlined process

SharePoint

Azure CDN video caching for SharePoint and OneDrive

Microsoft have introduced improved streaming perofrmance for videos stored in SharePoint and OneDrive. Frequently accessed videos will be streamed from the Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN)closest to the user to optimize the playback experience. At all times data will remain within the Microsoft 365 compliance boundary.

Office 365 CDN conceptual diagram
Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) in Microsoft 365

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Download SharePoint site usage data in Excel

Site owners can now export their site’s 90-day usage data in an Excel report from the Site Usage page.

IZ-RP-21_August-2020_022_004_Export-site-usage.jpg
SharePoint site owners and members can download their site’s 90-day usage data in an excel report, directly from the Site Usage page.

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Updated list and list item sharing experience

Site owners, members and visitors will now see a Share command when they are viewing a list, even when they do not have any list item selected.

Site owners can grant other users access to the list and can specify whether what permissions to grant. Other users (e.g. site members and visitors) cannot directly grant other users access to the list, but they can use the dialog to send an approval request to site owners if the site is set up to allow access requests (enabled by default).

IZ-RP-21_August-2020_022_005_Share-list-list-items.jpg

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Improved image columns in lists and libraries

Several improvements have been made to the image column, including the ability to add an image to a list or library using the list itself or a library form. Also, when users are browsing the list on a mobile device, they will be able to upload an image – including taking a photo with the device’s camera.

IZ-RP-21_August-2020_022_006_Image-column.jpg
Add an image to a list items using the improved Image column capabilities.

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Move files and keep sharing

When you move a file to a new location in Microsoft 365, you will have the option to continue sharing the file from its new destination. A simple pop-up to confirm and keep moving forward.

The new link match permissions just like the source location and we send your collaborators an e-mail that notifies them that the file has been moved.

IZ-RP-21_August-2020_022_007_Move-file-continue-share.jpg
When you move a file to a new location in Microsoft 365, you will have the option to continue sharing the file from its new destination.

Find out more:

SharePoint site templates for Education

Made available through the Microsoft Look Book, these SharePoint site templates are designed for schools and universities. Each brings together news, events, highlighted content, quick links and more, pre-configured and designed with a specific scope and audience for a variety of Education scenarios.

IZ-RP-21_August-2020_022_002_SP-EDU-templates.jpg
SharePoint site template: “School home page” – across several screen sizes.

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Teams

Tasks in Teams

The new Tasks app in Teams provides a new unified view of tasks and assignments from across Microsoft To Do, Planner, and Outlook, helping you consolidate and prioritize your tasks.

there is also an added, new List view with the ability to edit multiple tasks at once, Graph API and Power Automate integrations, and task publishing capabilities to come.

An image of the Task app in Teams.
Tasks in Teams.

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New features in Whiteboard for Teams

Microsoft have added new features to Whiteboard in Teams to make it easier to keep the creative process moving forward virtually. You can now quickly add sticky notes to a canvas, making it easier to contribute if you’re using a device without a digital pen.

You can now also move and re-order objects on the canvas through a simple drag and drop gesture.

An animated image showing updates to Whiteboard in Teams.
Microsoft Whiteboard in Teams.

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Real time presence

Stay focused throughout the day with Microsoft Teams. Whether you are free for a quick chat or presenting in a meeting, real time presence increases the accuracy of your status so others know when to reach out.

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Meeting recording storage for areas where Stream is not available

A new admin setting will allow you to turn on meeting recordings if Microsoft Stream data residency is not yet in country. If this setting is turned on, Teams meeting recordings will be saved in the data center closest to the region.

Find out more:

Optimised Microsoft Teams Experience for VMware Horizon 8

VMWare Horizon 8 now offers enhanced audio and video experience for Microsoft Teams. The optimization pack helps provide better user experience and improved productivity for those leveraging Microsoft Teams across Horizon virtual desktop (VDI) and published application environments.

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New Teams devices

First, The Windows collaboration display by Avocor is the world’s first and only Windows collaboration display certified for both Microsoft Teams and Azure.

Avocor.png
Avocor’s AVW-6555 provides seamless integration with Microsoft Teams video and audio-conferencing capabilities immediately with a Teams-enabled computer.

Then we have new offerings by Logitech, who now have products that support Microsoft Teams Rooms powered by HP.

Logitech + HP.png
Logitech now offers Microsoft Teams Rooms powered by HP.

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Skype for Business Online connector consolidating to Teams module

Microsoft are simplifying the Teams administration experience with a single PowerShell module that includes complete management capabilities for Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business Online, by introducing full functionality of Skype for Business Online Connector into the Teams Module.

This means that Skype for Business Online Connector in the Skype for Business Online PowerShell, which has been a separate product that contains many cmdlets needed to manage Microsoft Teams, now has been consolidated into a single PowerShell module.

Find out more:

Teams App Submission API

Microsoft have announced that the Teams App Submission API is now generally available. This new Graph API allows all users at any organization to develop on the platform of their choice and submit their apps into Teams with zero friction.

App Submission API.jpg
Teams App Submission API is now generally available.

Find out more:

Teams (Education)

Roster updates from School Data Sync automatically update the Class Notebook roster

Now, School Data Sync (SDS) updates automatically flow to the OneNote Class Notebook! Previously when SDS made roster updates, they would not happen until the educator went and clicked on the “Class Notebook” tab in the Class Team.

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Set channel specific collaboration and content spaces

Available now, educators can set Channels in class teams to create sections in Collaboration Space or Content Library, which is especially helpful for educators who like to use channels as separate units. While in a class team, go to the Class Notebook and click “Manage Notebook” to choose which channel a new Section will go.

This allows the educator to create a “read-only” Content Library or student editable “Collaboration Space” specific to each unit and channel.

Manage Notebooks - set Channel Default.png
Now an educator has the option to set Channels to create sections in Collaboration Space or Content Library.

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Reduce clicks to get the “Teacher Only” area

Now in the OneNote Class Notebook or the Staff Notebook, the “Teacher Only” section group will be enabled by default. This saves some extra clicks for this more private view.

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Detect and delete inappropriate messages

IT admins can leverage communication compliance policies and AI models to automatically detect inappropriate content, then review and choose to delete.

Messaging containing offensive or harassing language and adult, racy, or gory images can be automatically flagged then removed from the Teams chat or channel by the IT Admin. This is not supported in private channels or in communications sent by guest users.

Detect inappropriate messages.png
Automatically detect inappropriate messages and choose which ones to remove.

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Build an interactive classroom with education apps

There are several third party apps that can be used within Teams to assist in finding ways to keep students engaged and learning throughout the day. All the available apps for engagement, communication, content creation and content & curriculum can be found below.

Prezi Video is an example of one of many apps available for Teams to quickly create engaging live or recorded class presentations.

Find out more:

Teams (Government)

New lobby setting: only the organizer joins the meeting directly for GCC

A new lobby setting is coming to Teams Meeting Options. We are adding “Only me” as an option to the “Who can bypass lobby?” setting. Once enabled, only the organizer will be able to join the meeting directly. Everyone else, including people from within the same organization, will be sent to the lobby.

Find out more:

New experience for launching instant channel meetings for GCC

Meet Now buttons in Teams channels will have a new home. You will soon find them in the Channel header where you can easily find and launch the meeting.

Find out more:

Improved Teams meeting join launcher experience for GCC

When you click on a Teams meeting join link, you will now see an optimized and improved join experience. You will be prompted with an option to join on the web, download the Teams client, or join with the native Teams client. This will result in faster and more confident meeting join.

Find out more:

New policy to prevent upload of profile picture for GCC, GCC High, and DoD

Teams desktop and web experiences will honor the Outlook on the Web mailbox policy setting that can control whether users are able change their profile pictures. This applies to GCC, GCC High, and DoD tenants.

Find out more:


Power Apps

Troubleshoot Forms in a Model Driven App

You can now get information about issues you encounter when working with related tables, entities, controls and components on a form by accessing the Monitoring Tool inside your model driven Power App.

The tool can help identify if the issue you are seeing is designed out of box or is due to a customization in the application and provide details that can help you understand why there are issues. To launch the tool just log into your Dynamics or Model Driven app and add &monitor=true to the end of your URL. This will add an icon onto the app header toolbar. Click on the icon that looks like the one in the circle below.

Troubleshoot Forms in a Model Driven App.

Find out more:

Improvements to Cascading Merge Transactions

After making improvements to the cascade assign and delete options last year to reduce timeouts, the Power Apps team are making similar improvements to merge operations.

Just as with assign and delete, merges will happen in the background. When a merge operation is run, if you are on build 9.1.0000.20463 or greater, instead of waiting on the submit screen until the job is completed which can take several minutes, you will instead be informed this will be handled in the background.

Find out more:

Power Apps checker now analyzes modern web syntax (up to ES9)

To ensure Power Apps checker continues to broaden analysis coverage as languages evolve, we recently migrated our web language rules to an ESLint plugin and now offer support for ECMAScript 2018 (ES9) syntax plus ES6 globals.

Find out more:

Power Platform Build Tools now generally available

Now generally available, Power Platform Build Tools allows anyone to setup DevOps for low-code and pro-code application development for Power Apps, Power Automate, Power Virtual Agents and other components supported by CDS solutions.

The GA release also introduces support for Multi Factor Authentication with the introduction of Service Principal Authentication.

Microsoft Power Platform Build Tools.

Find out more:


Power BI

On-premises data gateway August 2020 update is now available

The August update for the On-premises data gateway (version 3000.54.8 ) includes an updated version of the Mashup Engine, which will match the Power BI Desktop August update.

This will ensure that the reports that you publish to the Power BI Service and refresh via the Gateway will go through the same query execution logic/run-time as in the latest Power BI Desktop version.

Find out more:

AutoML now supports applying models in PQO Function Browser

Analysts can now apply any Power BI AutoML model to entities in any dataflow in the same workspace using PQO function browser. With this new capability, users don’t need to be an owner of the dataflow that has the model.  They can use models created by others in the same workspace.

AutoML now supports applying models in PQO Function Browser.

Find out more:

Power BI updates for Microsoft Information Protection sensitivity labels

Power BI have announced several additional sensitivity label features now in production:

  • Excel file to inherit the Power BI dataset’s sensitivity label when using a PivotTable connection
  • Sensitivity labels in embedded reports and dashboards – public preview
  • Label inheritance upon creation of new content
Excel files to inherit the Power BI dataset’s sensitivity label when using a PivotTable connection.

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Header/ navigation improvements in the Power BI Mobile apps

The Power BI team have announced improvements to the navigation in the Power BI mobile apps to make it easier for our users to understand their content hierarchy and to navigate between items quickly, aswell as making it easier to share relevant content with colleagues.

Improvements to the header in Power BI mobile apps.

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Block classic workspace creation

The Power BI team have added a new tenant setting for Power BI admins to choose if users can create classic workspaces. This helps organizations control workspace creation more effectively and prevent unwanted workspaces from appearing in Power BI when Office 365 groups are created.

Screenshot of a Power BI Admin portal tenant setting allowing organizations to block the creation of classic workspaces.
Allow Power BI Admins to block classic workspace creation.

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Multiple data lakes support inside Dataflows in Power BI

The Power BI team have announced improvements to Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 (ADLS Gen2) support inside Dataflows in Power BI.  This includes support for workspace admins to bring their own ADLS Gen2 account, improvements to the Dataflows connector in Power BI, take ownership support for dataflows using ADLS Gen2 and also minor improvements to detaching from ADLS Gen2.

Multiple data lakes support inside Dataflows in Power BI.

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Power Virtual Agents

Share and collaborate on your bot with subject matter experts

Power Virtual Agents now allows you to share your bot with your teammates, allowing multiple contributors to edit and manage your bot.  Subject matter experts in a team can collaborate together on a bot.  For example, a customer support bot can now have different subject matter experts working on refund related topics vs. topics related to membership.

Share and collaborate on your bot with subject matter experts.

Find out more:


Power Automate

Run a flow when a SharePoint column is modified

One of the most common requests for Power Automate is to enable a way to trigger a flow when a column is modified in SharePoint. That wish has now been answered as the Power Automate team have announced the new “When an item or file is modified” trigger.

The “When an item or file is modified” trigger that lets you filter to just the list or file modifications, making it much simpler to create a flow that’s tuned to the right events.

The new “When an item or file is modified” trigger in Power Automate.

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Delay, Command-Line Arguments, and Copy-Paste Features for UI Flows

Microsoft have announced the availability of Delay, Command-line argument, and Copy-paste features in Power Automate UI flows.

  • Delay: The Delay action can be added as an explicit action anywhere in UI flow. 
  • Command-line arguments: The Command-line argument feature is available in the launch action’s advanced options. 
  • Copy and paste: You can copy any action or scope and then add it from My clipboard
Selecting the Delay action in UI flows
Delay action in UI Flows.

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Trigger flows from any message in Microsoft Teams

The Power Automate team have announced the new “for a selected message” trigger enables any Teams user to create a custom message action to start a flow from any message in Teams.

Trigger flows from any message in Teams.

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Seven New Connectors Released in July 2020

July 2020 saw seven new connectors added to the Power Automate platform, with now more than 20 new connectors added to the ecosystem in the last three months!

July saw the addition of IN-D KYC India, CPQSync, Motimate, SMSAPI, Pure Leads, AXtension Content Gate and SMSLink.

Find out more:


Related

Several improvements to Edge

Microsoft have announced several improvements to the Edge browser last month, including:

  • Collections now allows you to export to OneNote
  • Picture Dictionary to Immersive Reader
  • 5 different highlighter colors, support for screen readers, and the ability to view and validate digital signatures to the built-in PDF reader
An animated image of improved readability in Microsoft Teams.
Collections now allows you to export to OneNote.

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Provision users to Azure AD from SAP SuccessFactors

With the integration between Azure AD and SAP SuccessFactors, you can now automate user access to applications and resources so that a new hire can be up and running with full access to the necessary applications on day one. The integration also helps you reduce dependencies on IT helpdesk for onboarding and offboarding tasks.

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Manage and secure all your SAP apps from Azure AD.

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Streamlined process for FastTrack for Microsoft 365

Microsoft have streamlined the process for requesting assistance from FastTrack for Microsoft 365. FastTrack is a benefit that comes with your Microsoft 365 subscription, at no additional cost, for customers with eligible plans of 150+ licenses.

An animated image of FastTrack as part of a Microsoft 365 subscription.
Streamlined process for FastTrack for Microsoft 365.

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