Microsoft are excited to announce that Windows 11 will start to become available on October 5, 2021.

A free upgrade to Windows 11 will begin rolling out to eligible Windows 10 PCs and PCs that come pre-loaded with Windows 11 will start to become available for users to easily buy. As PCs play a more central role in our day to day lives, Windows 11 is designed to bring you closer to what you love by empowering your productivity and creativity.

Adepteq have the rundown on this exciting new release:

  1. With Windows 11, users will experience new designs and sounds that are modern and fresh.
  2. 'Start' utilises the power of the cloud and Microsoft 365 to show you your recent files no matter what device you were viewing them on.
  3. Want an even more powerful way to multitask and optimise your screen? Snap Layouts, Snap Groups and Desktops provide just that.
  4. With conversations through Microsoft Teams, Windows 11 provides a faster way to connect with others, as Microsoft Teams will be integrated into the taskbar.
  5. Widgets, a new personalized feed powered by AI, provides a faster way to access the information you are interested in.
  6. This latest version of Windows, is inclusively designed with new accessibility improvements that were built for and by people with disabilities.
  7.  Microsoft are opening the Store to allow more developers and independent software vendors (ISVs) to bring their apps to the Store which unlocks new opportunities for developers and creators.
  8. Windows 11 is optimized for speed, efficiency and improved experiences with touch, digital pen and voice input.
  9. Windows 11 is the operating system for hybrid work and learning, delivering new experiences that work how you work, are secure by design, and easy and familiar for IT to deploy and manage.

The free upgrade starts on October 5 and will be phased and measured. New eligible devices will be offered the upgrade first. The upgrade will then roll out over time to in-market devices based on intelligence models that consider hardware eligibility, reliability metrics, age of device and other factors that impact the upgrade experience. Microsoft expect all eligible devices to be offered the free upgrade by mid-2022.

Being Microsoft Gold Certified Partners, Adepteq can provide Microsoft Licences for you to purchase. If you would like to speak to an expert for more information please contact us.

To read the full Microsoft article, click here.

Microsoft Inspire: Modern Working

Last week tens of thousands of people from all over the world came together to gain experiences and insights from Microsoft subject matter experts and partner communities as they advance their businesses, with a more thorough understanding of Microsoft's cloud to edge, secure, and trusted business platforms.

The following is a summary of the announcements and news related to modern working for you to keep in mind as you start implementing plans for a very successful year ahead.

Windows 365 Cloud PC:

If you're looking for a new way to experience Windows 10 or Windows 11 as a cloud service, then Windows 365 Cloud is your way to go. You will be able to stream the full Window's experience including Apps, settings and data to any device from the Microsoft Cloud.

With Windows 365, partners can:

Read Microsoft 365 General Manager Wangui McKelvey’s blog post to learn more.

Microsoft Teams:

New collaborative apps from partnerships with independent  software vendors (ISVs). These include Atlassian Confluence, SAP Cloud for Customer, Workday and Salesforce- are coming to Microsoft Teams. These integrations allow structured business processes and data to come together increasing collaborative work. Developers and ISVs can build the next generation of apps with collaboration at the core, allowing asynchronous and real-time collaboration for chats, meetings, content creation and business processes.

Read Microsoft 365 CVP Jared Spataro’s blog post to learn more.

Microsoft Viva:

Microsoft Viva is an employee experience platform that brings together tools for employee engagement, wellbeing, learning and knowledge. Adding integrations with more than 20 partners from the likes of ServiceNow, Workday and Qualtrics comes into play during Autumn. With these new integrations customers can seamlessly surface tools, insights and experiences personalised for employees during their workflow.

Read the Microsoft 365 Blog post from Microsoft CVP Jared Spataro and Microsoft Business Applications CVP Alysa Taylor to learn more.

Benefits for partners building Microsoft Teams or Microsoft Viva apps

Microsoft have announced new benefits for ISVs who want to build and market Modern Workplace apps for Microsoft Viva and MS Teams. Those ISVs that are eligible, will receive access to Microsoft technology, one-on-one consultations, curated training, and marketing resources that will help them reach the 145 million people using and collaborating on MS Teams daily.

Visit the Modern Work and Microsoft Viva ISV app development pages to learn more.

New Partner Tools:

Two new tools are now in preview that are intended to make it easier to deliver managed security services and identify opportunities to grow.

Microsoft 365 Lighthouse

Microsoft 365 Lighthouse is a unified portal that assists managed service providers (MSP) partners to easily secure devices, data and users, at no extra costs, for their Microsoft 365 Business Premium customers.

Project 'Orland'

Available in private preview, Project "Orland" is a fresh, new experience in the Partner Centre to help Microsoft Partners grow their cloud business by sharing Microsoft-powered insights about their own customers which will improve account management.

To find out more about the Microsoft Inspire event, head over to the main article.

If you need additional Office 365, SharePoint, Microsoft Teams or Power Platform support, feel free to contact us and one of our expert advisors will be able to assist you.

When it comes to security, according to the 'State of SMB Cyber Security in 2019', 60% of small business say they lack the skills to deal with security issues and are not prepared to deal with cyber attacks. A lot of small businesses fall into the trap of thinking it's a lot of work to ensure the safety of your company, however it is much easier than you think...

With Microsoft 365 Business Premium, advanced security capabilities along with collaboration tools, can help you run your business safely, from anywhere. Here are the Top 5 Benefits of Microsoft 365 Business Premium.

  1. Communicate and collaborate effortlessly: Save time with Microsoft Teams which allows your employees to collaborate in real-time, through Chat and Online Meetings, Share Files and Co-Author documents all in one convenient place.
  2. Protect your important work data from unauthorized access: Covid-19 means remote working has been taken to a whole new level, however there is a fear of employee's working remotely, falling vulnerable to email hacking where passwords and valuable details could land in the wrong hands. Advanced multifactor authentication, uses a second form of authentication that has been show to thwart 99% of identity hacks according to a Microsoft Security blog (2019). Conditional access policies ensure only authorised company personnel have access to private company data.
  3. Protection against phishing attacks and ransomware: With real-time AI Powered malware scanning, you are able to detect attachments and links shared across email, one drive and teams. Anti-spoof technologies help identify and protect against impersonation and phishing. It helps prevent unauthorised apps or scripts from accessing files.
  4. Safeguard sensitive data: When dealing with sensitive data like customer payment details, you need information protection capabilities. Microsoft 365 Business Premium helps safeguard these confidential business data against breaches and accidental loss, encrypting email and prevents unauthorised access.
  5. Secure your work data on personal devices: Employees use personal phones and laptops to sometimes access work data, Microsoft 365 Business Premium prevents these confidential files from being saved into unsecure, personal locations. Mobile app protection policies help keep work and personal apps separate. Work data can be easily, and safely, wiped remotely if an employee moves on from the company.

 

Microsoft 365 Business premium can help secure work data from anywhere, whilst being cost-effective and easy to use. For more help understanding how your company can benefit from securing their data from anywhere, speak to our technical experts.

 

The leading provider of human layer security, Egress, recently announced getting their hands on Aquilai, an anti-phishing provider with natural language processing technology and machine learning that puts all targeted email attacks, impersonation and spear phishing attempts to a halt. Egress Intelligent Email Security platforms are strengthened due to the acquisition of Aquilai.

Egress and Aquilai are a powerful combination that will provide customers with protection against all inbound cyberattacks targeting employees and real-time outbound email security for shared data, including inadvertent data loss and email encryption. Due to the increased volume and sophistication of targeted phishing attacks, security leaders need an intelligent, non-disruptive email security solution that detects multi-vector exploits and thwarts zero-day attacks. With seamless integration, Microsoft Outlook will enable organisations to effectively defend against email data loss and the increasing number of attacks targeting the 365 platform.

The acquisition will begin immediately with the launch of Egress Defend, incorporating Aquilai’s anti-phishing technology and the following key capabilities:

Egress CEO Tony Pepper comments: “Organisations face a daily onslaught of targeted attacks via email that are designed to exploit employees. By acquiring Aquilai, Egress will expand its protection over our customers’ human layer to ensure they can defend against targeted inbound attacks and outbound data loss as employees share content. I’m also personally delighted to welcome Jack Chapman as our new VP of Threat Intelligence and look forward to working with him to help our customers level-up in their fight against phishing.”

Chapman comments: “Aquilai is the perfect fit to advance Egress’ mission to secure the human layer, adding sophisticated anti-phishing capability to existing products that secure outbound content as it is shared by employees. I’m also delighted to be joining Egress as VP of Threat Intelligence to further accelerate the company’s high growth in EMEA and North America.”

As a result of the acquisition and launch of Egress Defend, the Aquilai Ajax brand will be retired from 1st June 2021.

So how can Adepteq help?

We partnered with Aquilai to provide our clients with leading edge protection against the most common (and costly!) form of cyber attack. Once we understand your environment we will provide a proposal to deploy Egress Defend to work alongside your existing defences, with licences on a per user basis.

Adepteq can provide an online demo and arrange a 10-day free Proof of Value, so you can see how Egress Defend works in your environment. Simply visit our page to arrange your online demo and to speak to our experts.

If you would like to read the full article click here.

Since March 2020, the start of Covid-19, we've had to find ways to create engaging virtual experiences at work, whilst working remotely at home. Microsoft have been key players by developing new skillsets within the Microsoft programs such as Microsoft Teams, Office 365 and SharePoint. People often complain about having to use 101 different modes of software for remote collaboration to get work done, but with innovative new Microsoft Teams features, you have more ways to use ONE tool for everyday collaboration and meetings, and now for webinars and external events.

Microsoft have begun the roll out of Webinars and PowerPoint Live, with these capabilities you have new ways to deliver professional and polished presentations in meetings of every size. Does this sound interesting? Well you don't need to purchase a new license or product as these new features will be automatically updated for you in your organisation's plan.

Here's what is in store...

Rich customer engagement now able with Full-featured webinars

You can now organise and hold meetings and webinars for up to 1,000 attendees with Teams. With end-to-end webinar support that’s as simple as setting up a Teams meeting—including custom registration pages and attendee emails, rich presentation options, host controls, such as the ability to disable attendee chat and video, and post-event reporting to understand participation and to follow up with attendees.

Attendee registration page inside of Teams

Having a webinar with more than 1,000 attendees? Teams meetings can seamlessly scale to accommodate a 10,000-person view-only broadcast experience. With a huge increase of working from home, Microsoft have now expanded the attendee limit to 20,000 through the end of this year.

Presenting like a pro is easier than ever!

Delivering impactful and more engaging presentations in a polished and professional way is more do-able than ever with PowerPoint Live and Presenter mode in Microsoft Teams.

Presenters can feel more capable and confident during presentations by bringing together Microsoft’s rich history with presenter experiences in PowerPoint and the collaboration power of Teams.

PowerPoint slide presenter view shown during a Teams meeting

Attendees are able to personalise their experience by privately navigating the content at their own pace or using high contrast mode and screen readers to make content accessible.

Slide translation capabilities

Using Presenter mode, presenters are able to customise how their video feed and content is shown to the audience. The first of three options, Standout mode, shows the speaker’s video feed as a silhouette in front of the shared content; Reporter mode shows content as a visual aid above the speaker’s shoulder, similar to a news broadcast; and Side-by-side mode shows presenter’s video feed alongside their content as they present. Standout mode is now available as of the end of May, and Reporter and Side-by-side will roll out shortly after.

Speaker shown in three layouts view with content

Attendee engagement is just as important after a webinar...

After the event ends, easily access reporting to bring attendee information into your customer relationship management (CRM) applications for lead management and follow-up is important. At the beginning of May, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Marketing customers can export attendee data directly from Teams to automatically create campaigns and customer journeys for ongoing nurture streams. The Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Marketing integration gives webinar hosts more ways to drive engagement, increase conversion, and build loyalty with your attendees.

Export contacts from Teams to Dynamics 365 Marketing

Doesn't this sound great? Get started with Webinars in Microsoft Teams today!

Since the new webinar capabilities are already included in many of the Office and Microsoft 365 plans your organization uses today, there’s no reason to not start using them now.

If you would like to explore how to get the most out of online events and webinars using Microsoft Teams, get in touch with Adepteq today. Our expert team can help educate you further- head over to our training page to see how.

 

Read the full Microsoft article here.

It's been a busy few months but May has flown in with full force. We've got the run-down on 'What's New in Microsoft Teams?'

Microsoft Teams recent updates includes changes regarding Meetings & Webinars, Meeting Recap, Meet Now, and how to Bypass Lobby Waiting as well as much more. Keep reading to find out how!

Meetings & Webinars:

Microsoft has began to offer live transcription in the Microsoft Teams platform for English (US). This feature allows a written record of the spoken text that happens during a meeting. Each speaker is clearly identified whilst speech is captured automatically in real-time which can be accessed during and after the teams meeting.

Meeting Recap

Meeting recap is available once a meeting is over in the form of a recording, transcript, attached files and chat. This recap is available in the Details Tab and can be shared with participants of the meeting. People who have joined the meeting late, or missed it can have access to this at any time.

thumbnail image 1 of blog post titled What’s New in Microsoft Teams | February and March 2021

 

Meet Now in Outlook client for Windows

From the Calendar tab in Outlook for windows, you can now start a Teams meeting instantly by clicking the Meet Now button. For this to work, admins need to set the Allow Private Meet Now policy option to True in their admin console area.

thumbnail image 2 of blog post titled What’s New in Microsoft Teams | February and March 2021

 

Get a Meet Now meeting link from the Calendar

To share a meeting with others quickly, you can simply copy the Meet Now link from your Calendar before the meeting starts. This is a quick and easy way to paste the link into chat, text and also emails.

thumbnail image 3 of blog post titled What’s New in Microsoft Teams | February and March 2021

New bypass lobby option

With the new Microsoft updates, certain groups of users are able to join meetings directly and bypass meeting lobbies with the new policies. "People in my organisation" and "People in my organisation, trusted organisation and guests." This gives users another level of security and flexibility when using Teams.

thumbnail image 5 of blog post titled What’s New in Microsoft Teams | February and March 2021

These few points are just a snippet of some of the changes Microsoft Teams is going through, stay tuned for more posts on these important changes, and get in touch to stay up-to-date and in contact. To read the full article click here.

Are you considering a new intranet to support productivity and daily work within your organisation? Then we have an interesting webinar for you.

In this 45-minute webinar, Phil Cave, our technical director, and Anders Fagerlund, Product Offering Lead for Omnia, will discuss the important aspects of how to implement a successful intranet, and talk about whether to invest in a bespoke or a product-based solution.

On the agenda:
There will be a Q&A at the end of this webinar session.

Sign Up Here

If you have any questions about the webinar, please contact us here.
We look forward to your registration!
Target audience

This event is primarily aimed at roles like CIO, CCO, CTO, Digital Workplace or Intranet Managers or similar roles within organizations planning to improve their digital workplace based on Microsoft technology.

General information

This webinar is free of charge and you can participate using a web browser or a mobile app. If the date and time don’t suit you, sign up anyway and we will share the presentation and a recording of the webinar.

Registration

Sign up via this form and you will receive a confirmation with a link to the meeting within 15 minutes. If you haven't received the confirmation email, please check your spam folder.
Unfortunately, we cannot accept registrations from private email addresses (gmail, outlook, yahoo, etc.)

Adepteq are pleased to share with you the latest Microsoft announcement. Introducing Microsoft Viva their new brand and product suite. Microsoft Viva is an employee experience platform (EXP) that is visually engaging and supports your employees needs. 

What is Microsoft Viva?

It's a special digital platform designed with the new world of remote working since Covid-19, in mind. Building on key elements of Microsoft 365, such as Microsoft Teams and SharePoint. Viva brings together communication, knowledge, learning, resources and insights into an effective, yet integrated employee experience. With a strong and growing ecosystem of partners and an open extensible platform, Viva empowers people and teams to be their best from anywhere, at any time.

Microsoft Viva is a grouping together of new and existing Microsoft 365 capabilities that support employee experience and addresses a number of  organisational priorities around people, defined by Microsoft as:

Viva is experienced through Microsoft Teams, although some elements can also be experienced through Outlook.

To start, Microsoft Viva will have four modules:

Microsoft Viva Connection IconViva Connections built on SharePoint and Yammer provides a curated and branded gateway to your digital workplace. Leaders can connect with employees via company town halls, and employees can access everything from company news, policies, and benefits to employee resource groups or communities they want to join.

Microsoft Viva Connections

Microsoft Viva Insights iconViva Insights helps individual employees stay connected with their colleagues and protect time for regular breaks, focused work, and learning. It brings new personal wellbeing experiences, insights, and recommended actions from Workplace Analytics and MyAnalytics into the flow of people’s work in Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft Viva Connections gif

Microsoft Viva Learning IconViva Learning is a central hub for learning in Microsoft Teams, with AI that recommends the right content, making learning a natural part of the day. It aggregates content from LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, and other leading content providers, as well as your own custom content. Easy sharing, assigning, and tracking of course completion.

Microsoft Viva Learning

Microsoft Viva TOpics iconViva Topics uses AI to automatically organize company-wide content and expertise into relevant categories, putting knowledge to work. Viva Topics automatically surfaces topic cards as people work in apps like Office, SharePoint, and Teams. When employees click on a card, a topic page appears with documents, videos, and related people.

Microsoft Viva Topics gif

We're certainly excited about the roll-out of Microsoft Viva in 2021 with new and updated versions being released constantly. If you're interested in building on your  Microsoft 365 bringing together communication, knowledge, learning, resources and insights into an effective, yet integrated employee experience then get involved and contact us today to see how we can help you.

Is Microsoft Viva a fit for your business? Let Adepteq help you make an educated decision. Contact us today to explore your options further.

Microsoft Teams replaces Skype for Business Online in July 2021!

Following the announcements in 2020 that Microsoft Teams replaces Skype for Business Online by the end of July 2021, we want to make sure that you have everything you need to have a successful migration. Whether you're thinking of upgrading to Microsoft Teams or enhancing your Microsoft Teams keep reading on to find out what the fuss is all about!

Why should you upgrade to Microsoft Teams? 

Microsoft Teams successfully extends the abilities of Skype for Business by bringing together calling, chats, meetings, collaborations, file storage and app integration into one single platform. This central hub streamlines the way teamwork is done, improving user satisfaction and accelerating your company's businesses plans. Microsoft are constantly making changes and updates to Microsoft Teams ensuring workforces are able to collaborate and communicate in a multitude of ways with limited restrictions. Your staff are working from home during Covid-19 and struggling to stay connected, and by migrating to Microsoft Teams we help you resolve this.

Working remotely has led to the need for people to feel connected whilst staying online. Gone are the days where we go to a conference room or pop to a colleagues desk for a catch-up. With Microsoft Teams, you won't miss out on the social interaction with video calls and instant messaging chats, as well as the ability to set up and schedule meetings one-on-one or as a group.

How can Adepteq help you?

Our experienced developers and business teams are experts when it comes to setting companies up with Microsoft Teams. We are here to educate and make you feel comfortable with Microsoft Teams right from the set-up stage all the way to integrating it within workforces.

While the Skype for Business Online service will be fully functional until July 31st 2021, we encourage organisations to begin their journey today. Make sure you allow ample time to complete your upgrade prior to the retirement date.

Contact us for more information on upgrading to Microsoft Teams today by completing our form.

 

In the months since remote work became the new normal for many of us, we've all had our fair share of "virtual everything", from customer meetings to online events and virtual team gatherings. Businesses of all sizes are using Microsoft Teams to stay connected, whether as part of their Microsoft 365 plan, or the free version of Microsoft Teams, which enables you to meet, chat, and collaborate securely, all in one place, at no cost.

Here are five things about the free version of Teams that make remote work easier, including new features now available.

1. Schedule meetings with anyone

Earlier this year Microsoft delivered scheduled meetings in the free version of Teams, answering one of the most frequent feature requests. When scheduling a meeting, organisers can either copy the meeting link to send it directly to other participants or send an invite via Outlook of Google calendar. Anyone, including external participants, can join meetings in one click - no setup or account required.

Microsoft are also adding the ability to view past and upcoming meetings in Teams. Soon you'll be able to view and edit all the meetings you scheduled in Teams, including their security options, right from the Meetings app on the left rail.

Schedule A Meeting

2. Reduce meeting fatigue with Together mode

Together mode is a new meeting experience in Teams that digitally places meeting participants in a shared background. It's great for meetings in which multiple people speak, such as brainstorms or roundtable discussion, because it makes it easier to pick up body language and non-verbal cues. Together mode is now available in the free version of Teams with a variety of scenes including auditoriums, conference rooms, and even a coffee shop.

Together Mode

3. Work with external stakeholders using guest access

Often you need to collaborate with people outside your organisation, such as clients, suppliers, and partners. You can do so directly in Teams by adding them as a guest. Guest access allows you to provide access to certain teams and chats to people outside the organisation, while maintaining control over your company data.

Note: Guest access is not required to join a meeting.

Guest Access

4. Share files with built-in cloud storage or integrate your existing storage

The free version of Teams comes with 10 GB of team cloud storage and 2 GB or personal cloud storage per user. This allows organisations to securely store, access, and share important documents in Teams. You can even co-author Word, Excel, and Power Point files with colleagues in real time within the Teams app.

Want to keep using your existing cloud storage service? No problem. You can easily integrate third party storage providers such as Google Drive, Dropbox, and Box, enabling you to view, manage, and share those files in Teams as well.

5. Brainstorm together with Whiteboard in Teams

Whiteboard in Teams makes it easy to run brainstorming and creative thinking sessions in a remote or hybrid work environment. Each Teams meetings has a dedicated whiteboard where participants can draw, sketch, and write on a shared digital canvas. You can also quickly add sticky notes to a whiteboard, making it easy to contribute if you're not using a digital pen.

Whiteboard

Adepteq use Teams ourselves and have successfully planned, deployed, trained on and are supporting Microsoft Teams with many of our clients.

If you would like to know more visit our Microsoft Teams page or to discuss how Microsoft Teams can improve your communication and collaboration, then please contact us or call 0800 6444 365.

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