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Microsoft today announced updates across its Microsoft 365 portfolio, which spans Microsoft Viva, Dynamics 365, Teams, and more. Beginning this week, Dynamics 365 and Teams are more closely integrated, and partner features with Viva are debuting alongside security enhancements and app monetization changes.
Now, Dynamics 365 users can invite anyone in an organization to collaborate on customer records within the flow of a Teams chat or channel. Moreover, they can add a Teams meeting to appointments and capture notes, or create a Teams meeting when adding an appointment. Users can also capture notes during a Teams call, which are saved in the timeline of a Dynamics 365 record — preventing those without the appropriate permissions from accessing the data.
New notification options in Teams are designed to keep stakeholders alerted to updates. Users can select specific chats and channels through which notifications are sent, as well as set the frequency of notifications and decide whether adaptive cards accompany the notifications. In a related development, new apps are coming to Microsoft Teams in partnership with independent software vendors (ISVs) like Atlassian, Salesforce, ServiceNow, and Workday. Microsoft says that ISVs will soon be able to sell their apps directly within Teams and offer private pricing, taking advantage of Microsoft’s newly reduced marketplace fees.
The Teams enhancements follow developer-focused updates in May 2021 designed to help developers build more unique scenarios, including shared stage integration, new meeting event APIs, Together mode, and media APIs with resource-specific content. Shared stage integration offers developers access to the main stages in meetings through a configuration in their app manifest. The new meeting event APIs, meanwhile, enable the automation of Teams meeting-related workflows through events, like meeting start and end.
“With 145 million daily active users — and growing — Teams is where people start their day and stay in the flow of work,” Microsoft CVPs Jared Spataro and Alysa Taylor wrote in a blog post. “Hybrid work requires a new class of apps that surface in rich ways across all the places people work — within chat, channels, and meetings. These apps have collaboration at their core, which is why we call them collaborative apps.”
Viva, Orland, and security
On the Viva side of the house, Microsoft today unveiled 21 new partner integrations including Workday, Qualtrics, and ServiceNow, all of which will be available this fall. The company also introduced new tools to help developers extend their apps into Viva, including Viva Connections APIs and an analytics dashboard called Connections. Coming soon in preview is Viva Learning APIs, which can be used to pull in content from learning providers as well as due dates and assigned content from learning management systems across Teams, Office.com, SharePoint, and Microsoft Search in Bing.
Beyond Viva, Microsoft announced that Microsoft 365 Lighthouse is entering public preview. The product provides partners with a central location and standard security configuration templates to manage and secure customers’ data, users, and devices against threats, anomalous sign-ins, and device compliance alerts. Launching in private preview in the Partner Center is the complementary service Project Orland, which aims to help partners grow their cloud business by providing recommendations like customers with trial conversion opportunity, customers who may need follow-up, and customers ready for new workloads to deploy from their existing customer install base.
In related news, for Azure Active Directory (AD) B2C customers, Microsoft is extending the scope of protection to include fraudulent activities by integrating Dynamics 365 Fraud Protection with Azure AD B2C. A paid governance add-in to Microsoft Cloud App Security is launching in public preview, allowing partners to monitor, protect, and govern Microsoft 365 apps and quickly identify, alert, and prevent risky behaviors.
According to Microsoft, the new Cloud App Security add-in provides visibility into apps that access Microsoft 365 data. It lets IT teams define and enforce appropriate app behavior with data, users, and other apps in accordance with an organization’s security and compliance posture for data access. And it detects anomalous app behavior with machine learning models, addressing issues with both automated and manual remediation actions.
Lastly, the user group capability in Insider Risk Management has grown to include fine-grained role-based access control, now in public preview, with permissions to priority user groups to further limit alerts and cases to specific people instead of the whole group. New universal regulatory templates for non-Microsoft cloud in Compliance Manager are available as well, letting partners more easily manage customers’ compliance posture across different clouds, machines, and apps.
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