Office 365 Updates: December 2019

december office 365 updates

AMT’s Monthly Office 365 Updates keep you up to date with new features and important announcements from Microsoft. Office 365 has a continuous roll-out of changes. We filter out the announcements that we think will be most relevant to our customers and send them out in an easily digestible form. Here are the Office 365 December updates.

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Previous Updates – November 2019.


New Feature: Outlook on the web as a progressive web app (PWA)

PWAs are websites that that provide native app-like features on supporting platforms and browser engines. When Outlook is installed as a PWA, users can launch it from the Start menu, pin it to the Taskbar, or run it in a standalone browser window that removes standard browser interface elements. Microsoft will continue to update Outlook on the web with additional app-like capabilities.

Each Chromium-based browser has a unique set of steps that users need to follow to enable PWAs.


Updated Feature: SharePoint Team Sites ‘Next steps’ panel 

SharePoint will help your users build new sites by providing contextual help. To see the tips, click on the megaphone in the Office 365 suite header above the team site. 

Currently there are four tips your users might see: upload files, add members, post news, and add additional Office 365 Group apps. 

These tips help your users customise and improve their team sites. Tips are useful for anyone learning more about SharePoint or setting up a new team site for the first time. 

Retirement of SharePoint classic and Delve blogs 

SharePoint classic blogs and Delve blogs are being retired. Existing SharePoint classic blogs will continue to work as expected. This includes the ability to create new posts. However, you will not be able to create new blog sites after a period of time. 

Delve blogs will no longer be available for creation. Existing blogs will also eventually be removed, after an extended period of read only access. 


New Feature: Meeting chat notifications

By default, meeting chats will be muted until a user either sends a message (in chat)/ joins online meeting. 

  • Users who have joined a meeting, whether or not they have sent a message in the meeting chat, will receive notifications of chat messages for that meeting unless they have modified their settings. 

  • Users who send a message in a meeting chat will receive notifications for chat messages. These messages will be for that meeting unless they have modified their settings. 

The Users can change the default setting: 

  • In the web browser or desktop client, users should tap their profile picture at the top right of the app, select Settings > Notifications. 

  • In the mobile client, users should access the “Hamburger” menu and choose Settings > Notifications. 

  • Then navigate to the meetings section and open the menu for Meeting chat notifications.

New Feature: Add participants to Teams Meeting chat 

Currently, users cannot easily add participants to a private meeting chat thread. 

This feature adds an option, Add participants, to the meeting chat header. Users who are already part of the chat thread will be able to add more users using this feature. The process works like it does in group chat.  

Users added to via chat will be able to join the meeting. After selecting the Join button in the meeting chat header, these users will be able to send/view messages as well as view recordings and other meeting artefacts.

New Feature: Live captions in English-US available in Teams meetings

This user option should be enabled for your tenant by default via the DisabledUserOverride policy. However, Microsoft recommend that any tenant who wants to enable live captions, run this command in PowerShell: “Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity PolicyName -LiveCaptionsEnabledType DisabledUserOverride” 

  • If you want to disable the option of live captions for Teams meeting attendees, run this command in PowerShell: “Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity PolicyName -LiveCaptionsEnabledType Disabled” 

  • If you want to re-enable the option of live captions for Teams meeting attendees, run this command in PowerShell: “Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity PolicyName -LiveCaptionsEnabledType DisabledUserOverride” 

  • Where PolicyName is any custom policy you may have created. Global would refer to tenant-wide global policy. 

Microsoft will be treating the EnabledUserOverride value for the setting in the same way as DisabledUserOverride (if set in existing Policies). Admins are encouraged to modify policies with EnabledUserOverride set for the LiveCaptionsEnabledType setting to DisabledUserOverride to avoid confusion. 

New Feature: Teams-Outlook Email Integrations 

These integrations enable users to seamlessly get information and move conversations to where they belong. Whether a customer request begins through email and needs to move to a project team in Teams, or a big announcement in a channel needs to be shared with a broader audience via email, you now have the tools to easily make it happen. 

Teams missed activity emails now show the latest missed messages and provide the ability to respond directly from within Outlook, letting you respond to conversations that need your attention faster, even when focusing on your inbox. 

More Details 

  • Share to Teams is an Outlook add-in. 
  • Share to Teams does not allow sharing IRM/DRM protected emails. 
  • All content is fully e-discoverable and GDPR compliant. 
  • Reply to missed activity emails uses Outlook Actionable Messages. 

Additional information


Updated Feature: New Account Management experience 

When end users select the “View account” link in the upper right corner of the Office portal header, they will be redirected to a new account management experience. 

This new account management site has the same functionality as the current site but with a different look-and-feel. The new site is also combined with the Azure Active Directory account experience. It provides a user access to their security info, password reset, devices, and more. 

Additional information

New Feature:  Retetention labels, proof of disposal for records 

If you are using retention labels to declare items as records, you will be able to see the list of record labels under the “Disposition” tab of Records management solution within the Microsoft 365 Compliance Center. 

Under these labels, you will see the complete list of disposed items corresponding to that label, both those disposed of automatically as well as through a disposition review. 

Additional information


New Feature: Advanced Threat Protection campaign views public preview

The preview feature will be available for Office365 ATP P2 (and E5) customers. In Security and Compliance Portal, existing Threat Intelligence -> Explore views for Phish and All email will include a Top Campaigns tab. The feature is new addition and a much better way to look at the big picture of attacks and distil their important aspects (timeline, targets, filtering and configurations verdicts, who clicked on what phish link and when). 


Microsoft Flow is becoming Power Automate

As announced at Microsoft Ignite 2019, Microsoft Flow is being renamed to Microsoft Power Automate to better align with the Microsoft Power Platform. Microsoft have also released additional updates to the Microsoft Power Platform that unlock new possibilities. To read about all of the exciting changes that have been made to the Microsoft Power Platform, read this blog.


Updated Feature: Handling repeated phishers in Forms

The Microsoft Forms automated machine review will block users who have two or more confirmed phishing forms from distributing forms and collecting responses. 

Microsoft will send global and security admins daily notifications of any form created within your tenant that has been blocked for potential phishing; you can unblock restricted users via the Restricted User Portal.

New Feature: Introducing file upload for Forms

This new feature allows form designers to choose a new question type, File Upload, which enables respondents to attach files as part of their response. 

  • Files can be accessed in either SharePoint or OneDrive for Business, depending on the form type. Group forms are stored in SharePoint, while personal forms are stored in OneDrive for Business. 

  • Form creators can limit the number and size of files as well as specify file types.  

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