What’s New Microsoft 365 June 2020

After last month’s little rant on rebranding it’s becoming more “official” Office 365 Groups are now Microsoft 365 Groups within the documentation and we even got a message center announcement referencing the change on the Microsoft 365 Roadmap…the renaming will continue I suppose. In this month’s update we have quite a bit of Teams & SharePoint related features which makes sense as SP Conference NA was supposed to be this month. Also, we have one “outlier” regarding Outlook on the web that really makes me quite happy but not mean much to anyone reading this😉.

Teams Features

Group chat with up to 250 people

I am sure there is a use case for this in some organizations but it seems like if I wanted to have a group chat with 250 people I would create a Team or maybe use Yammer as this is the “Year of Yammer” after all😉.


MC211658, Stay Informed, Published date: May 1, 2020

We’re increasing the maximum chat size from 100 to 250 in response to customer requests.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 63577.

When this will happen

We will be rolling this out to from early May to mid-May.

How this affects your organization

Private chats in your tenant will be able accommodate up to 250 people.

If a user has more than 20 people in a chat, the following chat features are turned off: Outlook automatic replies and Teams status messages; typing indicator; video and audio calling; sharing; and read receipts.

What you need to do to prepare

You might want to update your user documentation and training.

  • It is not possible to customize the chat size limit; however, if you feel that you need to turn off chat you can do so in the Teams messaging policies.
  • This does not affect the maximum limit (20) for the number of people in a video or audio call.
  • This does not affect the maximum limit (10) for file attachments.

Administrative controls for background images and effects

It didn’t take long for folks to figure out how to get around the inability to add your own backgrounds or Microsoft to just open it up but getting some administrative controls within a month or so of the rollout is a welcome change of pace.


MC212361, Stay Informed, Published date: May 8, 2020

Tenant administrators will be able to assign a user-level policy to control how users engage with background effects in Teams meetings. For example, you may choose to allow your users to customize their background by uploading their own images.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 63666 and 63670.

When will this happen?

  • We will roll out your ability to manage policy settings from early May to late May
  • We will roll out user ability to upload images from mid-May to late May

How this affects your organization

We are introducing the following user-level policy options:

  • Offer no filters
  • Offer background blur only
  • Offer background blur and default-provided images
  • All, which includes the ability for users to upload custom images

What you need to do to prepare

If you wish to disable this feature, you can run a cmdlet:

Import-Module SkypeOnlineConnector
$Cred = Get-Credential
$CSSession = New-CsOnlineSession -Credential $Cred
Import-PSSession -Session $CSSession -AllowClobber
Grant-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity “email address” -PolicyName “BlurOnly”

Current VideoFiltersMode options available are –
‘Bl urAndDefaultBackgrounds’ | ‘BlurOnly’ | ‘AllFilters’ | ‘NoFilters’;


View Calls and Meetings in separate windows

This is a big win from a usability standpoint in our opinion. It’s not terribly difficult to get back to the meeting interface in MS Teams but it is one of the things that we often see folks struggle with in user training.


We are pleased to announce that we will be enabling users to be able to view meetings and calls in separate windows along with the other recently announced features.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 57294

When this will happen

We will be rolling this out in June.

How this will affect your organization

Once available, users will be able to view meetings and calls in separate windows from the main Microsoft Teams client. Additionally, meeting and call controls such as mute, video, chat, leave and others will now be located at the top of the meeting window so that they are always available and never block the underlying content. This new experience will also include recently announced features such as 3×3 video, raise hands, and custom backgrounds.

This will roll-out OFF by default and users will have the ability to turn on the new experience via the user setting: General > Turn on new meetings and calling experiences.

Note: In the future we will enable this functionality by default, but we want to provide users extra time to become familiar with having meetings open in their own sperate window. As we move forward we will provide more details via Message center.

New meeting experience:

Neww Meeting Experience

New meeting/calls control location:

New Call Controls Location

Steps for Users to turn on the new experience:

Step 1: Click on Avatar on top right of Teams and click Settings.

Click Avatar

Step 2: Check the Turn on new calling an meetings experiences check box and then restart the Teams client.

Turn on New Experience

Note: To provide additional transparency we expect the new experiences to be enabled with the following timeline. This is subject to change and we will provide appropriate notice for each phase through Message Center as we approach July and August.

  • June – New experiences are available and users can enable through settings.
  • July – Experiences are enabled by default and users can disable through settings.
  • August – Experiences are enabled by default and user controls are no longer available.

Know limitations:

  • Meeting notes will launch to the main Teams client
  • Support for full screen content viewing will be coming in the future
  • Support for Invision Freehand Whiteboard will be coming in the future

What you need to do to prepare

Educate your users on how they can enable the new meeting and calling experience. Additionally, you may consider updating any training or documentation as appropriate.


Invite a group or distribution list to a meeting

Should preface the “group” aspect a bit as this refers to Modern Groups (or Microsoft 365 Groups nee Office 365 Groups) however it’s still a welcome feature.  Like anything that enables mass emailing though, use wisely.


MC213330, Stay Informed, Published date: May 15, 2020

Your users will soon be able to invite a group (Teams and Microsoft 365 groups) or distribution list to a scheduled Teams meeting. This feature is available with the Teams web app as well as the desktop app (Windows and Mac).

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 63987.

When this will happen

We will be rolling out this feature in mid-May 2020.

How this will affect your organization

When scheduling a meeting in Teams, you will be able to invite both distribution lists and modern groups as well as individuals.

After adding a list or group, Teams will

  • Deliver the meeting invitation to all members of list and
  • Send the invitation to group members based on their subscription to group events.

Both distribution lists and modern groups will be discoverable within the people picker when scheduling Teams meetings.

Invite Group or DL

What you need to do to prepare

You might consider updating your user training and documentation.

Learn more about adding groups as an attendee while scheduling meetings


Contextual Search in Teams

With all the awesomeness around search in SharePoint and OneDrive it is about time that search gets some love in Teams.  The experience is decent but could certainly be improved and this is a step in the right direction in our opinion, but just a step.


MC213822, Stay Informed, Published date: May 20, 2020

Teams users will soon be able to search within a specific chat or channel in both the desktop and web Teams clients.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 64017.

When this will happen

We will begin rolling this out in late June, and the rollout will be complete in mid-July.

How this will affect your organization:

Currently, Teams users are unable to search within a particular chat or channel. With this new Contextual search experience, users will be able to search within a specific chat or a channel by pressing Ctrl+F (Windows) or Cmd+F (Mac).

Once initiated, the search query and results will be limited to the focused chat or channel.

Contextual Search

What you need to do to prepare:

Once this is available in your tenant, you might consider informing your users of the new feature. You might also consider updating your end user training and documentation.


Team membership limit moving to 10,000

As of reading this you can have up to 10,000 members in a Microsoft Team.  Per the message center update potential use-cases include company-wide, department-wide and inter-departmental communications.  Again, isn’t this supposed to be the Year of Yammer…it’s really becoming hard to say “Yammer is for the Outer Loop” when we keep seeing Teams limitations being raised to these levels.


MC207957, Stay Informed, Published date: Mar 27, 2020

Major update: Announcement

Applies To: All

Updated May 22, 2020: We are pleased to announce that this feature is now available to all tenants. Additionally, please see the Additional Information for best practices on managing large teams.

We will soon be increasing Microsoft Teams team membership limit to 10 thousand members.

We will begin enabling this for all tenants at the end of April and will be complete at the end of May.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 62549

How does this affect me?

Once available, all new and existing teams can host up to 10 thousand members. Increase in team size will help you utilize teams for scenarios such as company wide, department wide and inter-departmental communications.

What do I need to do to prepare for this change?

No explicit action is needed from admins and both new and existing teams will be able to grow to 10,000 members.

Additional information


Teams meeting and meeting chat size increasing to 350

The interesting part on this one is that it will be available in mid-June and will “stay in effect” through September then be reassessed at that time.  I am curious to see how things play out regarding the work from home experience for folks after the COVID pandemic.  I’m betting many organizations continue to enable their employees to work from home if possible as they’ve been forced into a digital transformation of sorts…we shall see.


MC214350, Stay Informed, Published date: May 27, 2020

We’re increasing the maximum Teams meeting call and meeting chat size from 250 to 350 in response to customer requests.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 64225

When this will happen

  • We will begin rolling this out in late May.
  • The rollout will be complete in mid-June.
  • The feature will stay in effect until the end of September.
  • We will reassess this feature in September and communicate with you again at that time.

How this affects your organization

Team meetings will be able to accommodate up to 350 people.

What you need to do to prepare

You might want to update your user documentation and training.


SharePoint Features

SharePoint and OneDrive support for sensitivity labels with encryption

Short and sweet version of this one is that we can use collaborative features in Office files that have sensitivity labels with encryption.  Biggest win here is the ability to co-author on those items now!


MC212009, Stay Informed, Published date: May 5, 2020

In November 2019, we notified you that we were enabling SharePoint and OneDrive support for sensitivity labels as a public preview (MC194985).

This feature is now available in your tenant.

This change is related to Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 57311.

How this affects your organization

Previously, when users applied sensitivity labels that included encryption to Office files stored in SharePoint and OneDrive, the service couldn’t process the content of these files. Consequently, co-authoring, eDiscovery, Data Loss Prevention, search, Delve, and other collaborative features didn’t work.

When you enable this feature, SharePoint and OneDrive will be able to process the content of Office files that have sensitivity labels applied. This allows other features such as co-authoring in web, eDiscovery, Data Loss Prevention, full-text search, to work.

What you need to do to prepare

This is an opt-in feature.

For full feature details and limitation, please review our online documentation


New layout for site footer

This one has been on the “requested list” for quite some time and will be a welcome improvement to the current experience. Important to note that the footer styling and experience still “boxed in” quite a bit and only applies to Communication sites so if you want full control from a content and visualization standpoint you are still looking at the custom solution route though.


MC212096, Stay Informed, Published date: May 5, 2020

There is a new site footer layout for SharePoint communication sites. The new Extended layout features an enhanced experience for viewers and provides more navigational control for site authors. Footer layouts hold two levels of navigation and can be edited in the Change the look panel without losing formerly saved links and labels at any time.

Improved Footer

When this will happen

The Extended layout for site footer will roll out to Targeted Release (entire organization) starting in May 2020 and will be completely rolled out to all customers by the end of July 2020.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID: 61063

How this will affect your organization

Communication site owners will see a new layout option in the footer section of the Change the look panel. They will also see the ability to set the background color of the footer. Once the new layout is chosen, site editors can add two level of links and labels in the footer by selecting Edit to the left side of the footer columns.

Change the look panel:

Improved Footer Change the Look

Edit footer links and labels:

Improved Footer Edit Option

What you need to do to prepare

You do not have to do anything to prepare for this change. There will be no changes to your current sites. We recommend that you update any internal documentation informing site authors about the new Extended footer layout option for communication sites.

Additional information


SharePoint home sites

This one is kind of “take 2” on the idea of having a Communication site labeled as the landing site of your SharePoint environment.  Microsoft gave us an option last year to have a hub-enabled Communication sites hub site navigation show on the SharePoint landing page, but it wasn’t widely used/adopted so they are taking another swing at it with this feature.  We like this idea and think it will land better than its earlier incarnation but only time will time.


MC212106, Stay Informed, Published date: May 6, 2020

SharePoint home sites is a new Microsoft 365 feature to help you configure and launch the top landing page for your organization.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 26842.

When this will happen

  • This feature is currently available to all Targeted Release (entire organization) customers.
  • We’ll be gradually rolling this out to all customers starting early May 2020 and will complete the roll out by the end of month.

How this will affect your organization

A home site is the top landing page for your organization’s intranet. You can designate any communication site to be the home site with a simple PowerShell cmdlet.

By making a communication site the home site, that site will have a highly visible and unique entry point in the landing experience of the SharePoint mobile app. In addition, your home site will be automatically setup to be an organizational news site and have organization-wide search configured.

SharePoint Home Sites Mobile View
What you need to do to prepare

If you would like to enable a home site on a new or existing SharePoint communication site, run this PowerShell command in the latest version of the SharePoint Online Management Shell:

Set-SPOHomeSite -HomeSiteUrl

Learn more about setting up a home site.


Schedule pages and news posts in SharePoint

This is one that I will likely be using all the time.  Do you ever think of something you want to share with your team or organization that would be of value but don’t have the time to get it all completed or worst yet know that it’s just the wrong time to push out information because it won’t be seen.  Finally, we can schedule the publishing of our news and pages in SharePoint out of the box.  We used a “workaround” with Approvals and Power Automate to accomplish this previously but the reality is the most manageable code you will ever have is the code you don’t write!


MC212265, Stay Informed, Published date: May 7, 2020

We’re introducing the ability for SharePoint page authors to schedule pages and news posts for publication at a future date and time.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 62892.

When this will happen

  • We will begin gradually rolling this out to Targeted Release customers in late-May; the rollout will be complete in early June.
  • We will update this post when we have information about the rollout for Standard Release customers.

How this will affect your organization

SharePoint site owners will have the option to enable scheduling on their sites; it is disabled by default.

Schedule Publishing of Pages

When scheduling is enabled, page authors will be able to set a date and time for their pages and news posts to publish.

What you need to do to prepare

You might want to notify site owners that they can enable scheduling on their sites and notify page authors that they may be able to schedule publication if the site owner has enabled the feature. You might also update your user training and documentation.

Learn more about scheduling a SharePoint page or news post to go live at a specific time.


Pre-publish overview in SharePoint

One of the more confusing aspects of Modern SharePoint has always been how images are chosen and rendered when we publish news and pages.  Microsoft and various MVPs have posted resources with details but it has always been challenging training content owners on this aspect of SharePoint so this is a welcome feature indeed.


MC212330, Stay Informed, Published date: May 7, 2020

We’re introducing a new pre-publish panel that gives page authors key information about their pages and news posts before they publish.

This feature is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 63257.

When this will happen

  • We will begin gradually rolling this out to Targeted Release customers in late-May; the rollout will be complete in early June.
  • We will update this post when we have information about the rollout for Standard Release customers.

How this will affect your organization

When page authors select an action, such as Publish, Republish, Post news, Update news, Schedule, or Submit for approval, the pre-publish panel appears to the right of the screen . The pre-publish panel gives authors an overview of their page or news post, including the site name, the thumbnail preview, and information about what happens when you publish. The pre-publish panel also has a link to the Page details pane so authors can make changes if needed.

Pre-Publish Preview

What you need to do to prepare

Notify individuals in your organization who author pages and news posts, and, if needed, update user training and documentation.


New hyperlink and date and time editors, improved column editing for SharePoint lists and document libraries

If you have ever tried to bulk edit a SharePoint list with hyperlink fields, you will understand why we are really hoping this is a win from a feature standpoint.  The way SharePoint handles hyperlinks is great in that we have a URL along with a friendly description.  The way SharePoint surfaces those hyperlinks in quick edit is atrocious and finicky at best. Really hoping to see this in our target release tenant soon to see if it’s the “real deal”.


MC213422, Stay Informed, Published date: May 15, 2020

We are improving the hyperlink and date and time field editors in SharePoint lists and document libraries. We are also making it possible to create all column types directly from Quick Edit. All the data in existing hyperlink and date and time fields will be retained and unchanged.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 63275 and 63277.

When this will happen

  • We will be rolling this out to Targeted Release customers in late May; the rollout will be complete in mid-June.
  • We will be rolling this out to Standard Release customers in mid-June; the rollout will be complete by the end of July.

How this affects your organization

For the hyperlink field type

  • We are replacing the legacy editor used in Quick Edit mode within SharePoint lists or document libraries.
  • The new hyperlink editor replaces the previous iframe experience with a modern experience.
Updated Hyperlink Control

For the date and time field type

  • We are replacing the legacy calendar control in SharePoint lists and libraries.
  • When filling or adjusting the date field in Quick Edit or a Form, users will see the latest Office Fabric calendar for Gregorian calendars, providing a coherent experience across all products.
  • Note: for non-Gregorian calendars, we will continue to provide full non-Gregorian calendar support.

Update to Sharing Links that block downloads

In another welcome update to non-Office related items stored in SharePoint/OneDrive we now can block the download of PDF files and other file types.  This was a long-standing request from the community and should be a nice update for quite a few folks.


MC213970, Stay Informed, Published date: May 21, 2020

We’re expanding the types of files that your users can share with downloads blocked (read-only).

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 64278.

When this will happen

We’ll be gradually rolling this out in late May, and the rollout will be completed by late June.

How does this affect me?

Users can currently create SharePoint and OneDrive sharing links that block the download of Office files. This sharing link allows recipients to read the file but not download it.

This update expands the list of supported file types to include PDF files, images, and audio files, for example. This update is in response to customer requests.

The experience of creating a read-only/download-blocked sharing link is unchanged. Users must uncheck “Allow editing” for the “Block download” toggle to be accessible.

Sharing Links Block Download Updates
What do I need to do to prepare for this change?

Administrators can control whether the “block download” setting appears only for Office files or whether it allows additional file types by editing the BlockDownloadLinksFileType setting in the Set-SPOTenant or Set-SPOSite PowerShell cmdlets. The options are “enable for only Office files” or “enable for all supported files” (default).

You might consider updating your user documentation and training materials.  Learn more about sharing files and folders.


Office.com home page layout and navigation

Technically this isn’t really SharePoint related however it’s a pretty impactful, visible change. I can see a lot of support calls coming in July/August of this year about the icons no longer being visible on the office.com site…start prepping your users now folks.


MC213423, Stay Informed, Published date: May 15, 2020

We are updating the layout and application navigation for the Office.com home page and the Office app in Windows 10 based on customer feedback.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 64019.

When this will happen

  • We will roll out this new experience to Targeted Release customers in early June.
  • We will roll out this new experience to Standard Release customers in mid-June.
  • The rollout will be complete mid-July 2020.

How this will affect your organization

Currently the top section of the Office.com home page is comprised of a ‘Start new’ option(for creating new documents) and a horizontal list of core applications.

This horizontal top bar is being moved into a vertical navigation bar on the leftside of the page to improve usability. This update has no impact on Office.com or Office app functionality.

The current Office.com home page layout

Current Office com layout

The new Office.com home page layout

New Office com layout

What you need to do to prepare

If your organization has training material that references the traditional Offiice.com layout, you may want to make adjustments to reflect the new layout.


Outlook on the web – Send later

This is selfish update to include because I’m sure this isn’t a heavily utilized feature, but I use it the Delay Delivery feature all the time in Outlook. The “IT Pro” in me hates leaving my machine on though so being able to delay delivery via Outlook on the web is a big win for me.


MC212344, Stay Informed, Published date: May 8, 2020

Outlook on the web is rolling out the ability to schedule emails to be sent at a later date and time.

This message is associated with Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 63665.

When this will happen

  • The feature will start rolling out Targeted Release customers in early May.
  • The rollout will be completed worldwide by the end of June

How this affects your organization

Users will be able to delay the delivery of an individual message or use rules to delay the delivery of all messages using Outlook on the web. This feature is already available in Outlook for Windows and Outlook for Mac.

Outlook on the web - Send later

What you need to do to prepare

You might consider updating your user documentation and training.


There have been lots of great updates and new features over the past couple months!!! As always, there are more coming , so be sure to check out the Tech Community Blogs and the Microsoft 365 Roadmap for more of what’s new.

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