The wait is finally over as Microsoft has announced that its walkie-talkie feature in Microsoft Teams is now generally available. The feature, which was first announced two years ago and has been in preview ever since lets users of the software giant’s video conferencing software use their smartphone or tablet as a walkie-talkie that can work over both cellular or wireless connection.
It is different from a traditional call. With Microsoft Teams’ Walkie-Talkie feature, one doesn’t need to open the phone dial app on their phone, search for a contact, call that person and wait for them to pick up. If you are using the Walkie-Talkie feature, then you simply need to hold a button to speak on the Teams Walkie Talkie and release the button for everyone to listen.
How to Access Walkie Talkie Feature?
The application is available in Microsoft Teams but is not installed by default, it must be added for users by the Administrator doing the following:
- Open Microsoft Teams admin center by accessing the following URL: https://admin.teams.microsoft.com/
- In the left menu, expand the Teams apps tab
- Click on Setup policies and then select the policy where you want to add the Walkie Talkie application
- Click on the Add apps button to install new applications
- Search for the Walkie Talkie and select it
- Click Add to make it available to all the users. This process can take up to 48 hours to be applied.
- Once the policy takes effect, users with iOS and Android devices will see it in the personal app bar in the mobile application. It will either be visible in the five pinned applications or in the extra menu when the user taps More.
The number of frontline workers using Teams has grown 400 percent from March to November last year. Bringing Walkie Talkie for Teams to mobile devices seeks to address challenges frontline workers face due to labor shortages and supply chain issues by providing “technology that saves them time, helps them communicate more seamlessly, and maximizes their efficiency when completing repetitive tasks,” Williams wrote.
The software maker’s collaboration with Zebra Technologies makes it work with a dedicated push-to-talk button for quick and secure communications. These devices are used widely by frontline workers, the employees that have helped them in the ongoing pandemic.
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