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Microsoft Adds Video Sharing Features In Teams To Energize The Co-working App

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Chipmaker Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) on Tuesday announced a new portal Viva Engage, coming to the Teams communication app, which would let co-workers share video stories documenting their activities.

The portal is expected to make the Teams app livelier. The chat app had over 270 million active users in January. The app is the main component of Microsoft Office, which contributes around 23 percent of the company's $49 billion in quarterly revenue.

Similar capabilities were earlier used in Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter and even Microsoft-owned LinkedIn. Twitter and LinkedIn both stopped their stories features in 2021.

Workers communicate mainly through emails, documents, spreadsheets and presentations and the new portal is expected to make things livelier, especially for the younger generation who are used to getting information from short-form videos.

Dan Holme, product lead for Viva Engage, told CNBC, "There was a real interest in using video as a richer way to express messages and thoughts within an organization, whether it's something just to keep your team going, whether it's capturing or meeting recording, or whether it's on a broader level across an organization. Because video allows people to express things in their own voice and captures much richer body language and signals there."

Viva Engage will replace the Communities app, which brought the enterprise-oriented social network Yammer into Teams, following Microsoft's $1.2 billion acquisition of Yammer in 2012.

Users will be able to record stories for circulation on the portal with the help of high-quality PC webcams, or they can use the Teams or Yammer apps for mobile devices, he added. said.

The software will showcase recommended stories from other co-workers, and users can comment or add emoji reactions. The feature does not limit the circulation of a video story to a small group of colleagues. And the story won't vanish after 24 hours and the video will be available on the creator's page until it's deleted.

Rather than evaluate success by simply counting active users, which is the usual approach in social networks targeting consumers, Microsoft will give importance to creation activity. "We want to see people actually connecting and then see the outcome of that connection," Holme said.

The stories feature will be available in Teams for no additional fees along with Office subscriptions later this summer. It will eventually be launched in Microsoft's Outlook and Yammer applications, the company said.

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