Microsoft revamps Teams webinars

Microsoft has revamped Teams webinars, including attributes envisioned to make it a lot more competitive with Zoom.

Microsoft unveiled the webinar overhaul at the firm’s Ignite digital conference. The modifications will surface in the subsequent variation of Teams, scheduled to ship soon.

The update will eliminate the want for third-get together applications to sign up members and ship webinar notifications. It also raises the number of watch-only members to twenty,000 for the relaxation of the 12 months to accommodate the greater number of distant personnel in the course of the pandemic. Following 12 months, that number will drop to 10,000, which is the same as Zoom, but a portion of Cisco Webex’s a hundred,000.

“It is closing a competitive gap with individuals like Zoom,” mentioned Tom Arbuthnot, principal growth architect at Modality Methods. Modality specializes in deploying Microsoft program and services.

Taking away the want for compensated third-get together applications like On24 when conducting a Teams webinar ought to minimize expenses, mentioned Irwin Lazar, an analyst at Metrigy.

The new attributes deliver obtain to customized registration choices that let webinar hosts monetize the celebration. That capability has been a critical lacking component in Teams, Arbuthnot mentioned.

Hosts can now see webinar attendee information in Microsoft Teams.

Other critical additions involve information about attendees right after the webinar is above, this kind of as names, e-mail and the sum of time invested at the celebration. Organizers can export the details to Microsoft’s customer connection management program, Dynamics 365.

Although hosts will have a lot more information about attendees, Teams safeguards the latter’s privateness by preventing them from finding out the names of other individuals tuning into a webinar.

Microsoft’s concentration on webinars follows its latest addition of polling to Teams. The characteristic allows celebration hosts question inquiries and record assembly participants’ solutions.

Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Teams supports up to twenty,000 watch-only webinar attendees.

The advancements in Teams webinars increase inquiries about the long term of Stream, stay broadcasting program Microsoft built-in with the collaboration company in 2018.

“Stream has been very well-known,” Lazar mentioned. “Now that you can do webinars in Teams, the dilemma gets to be, ‘What does that signify for Stream?'”