Microsoft Teams will let you attend meetings as a 3D avatar
If your boss lets you, you can start using these 3D avatars as soon as May
Microsoft Teams is finally bringing a new feature that could change how we look at our coworkers in virtual meetings.
Starting in May, Teams will introduce 3D avatars that you can customize to your liking. This new feature aims to give users a camera break while allowing them to collaborate effectively with colleagues.
According to Microsoft, the Mesh avatars have been in development and testing for a while now, and they’ve received some positive feedback from beta users.
With hundreds of combinations of physical attributes and wardrobe options, you can make your avatar look like the real you, or something entirely different if you prefer.
But that’s not all. The avatars have various expressions and reactions, so you can show your emotions and enthusiasm during a meeting.
You can adjust the camera angle and even possibly use them in VR meetings with Meta Quest headsets, but Microsoft hasn’t confirmed if that’s a possibility yet.
“We want you to be able to express yourself via your Mesh avatar, so we created avatar reactions, a mood toggle, and options to adjust the camera angle,” Product Marketing Manager Avery Salumbides, wrote in a blog post last year. “Join your meeting with a smile on your face and show enthusiasm with just the right reaction—whether your coworker makes a point you agree with, says something surprising, or shares a funny story from the weekend.”
While it’s not a necessarily game-changing feature, it could prove useful to users who are tired of being on camera during meetings.
While some argue that video calls are more personal, having an avatar can provide more privacy.
Let’s face it; we’ve all been there. You’re in a virtual meeting, trying to look professional and composed, but your messy bed in the background is screaming for attention. It’s a distraction and a source of embarrassment.
There’s no word on the exact date when the feature will be available in May, but I’m sure we’ll get more information soon. For the impatient ones out there, you can learn more about Mesh Avatars here.
For now, it’s exciting to see Microsoft pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in virtual collaboration.
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- Microsoft Teams adds new Discord-like communities feature
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