Microsoft Teams: noise suppression is now for everyone

Noise suppression via artificial intelligence is now available on all Microsoft Teams apps, but you need a premium account.

Among the new features related to the latest Microsoft Teams update, there's one that was particularly expected. It's about noise suppression, which is now active for everyone, including users with Apple devices who were left out of the first round of the implementation dedicated exclusively to Windows systems last December.

Noise suppression is an extremely useful feature for those who usually use videoconferencing systems such as those provided by Microsoft Teams. In fact, especially in a period like the current one where many people do their work from home or, in any case, out of the canonical working environment usually more controlled and quiet, eliminating the possible diffusion and perception (for those who are on the other side of the device) of extraneous noises allows to make the conversation clearer, limiting at most the presence of disturbances from outside.

Microsoft Teams, how noise cancellation works

Teams' noise cancellation technology uses a sophisticated artificial intelligence-based system to actively act when a sound is perceived in the surrounding environment as extraneous to the conversation. Among these sounds there can be ambient noises, the barking of a dog, background voices and the like.

Because of the particularity of this system, Microsoft has chosen to make the functionality available only to those who subscribe to the premium version of Teams, enabling the preview of the client. Another important fact, only for Mac users, is the processor: in fact, the noise cancellation is not yet supported by the new laptops with M1 processor (so not even on the new iMac and iPad Pro) but only on those equipped with Intel chips.

Those who are part of organizations that take advantage of the Office 365 subscription can enable the noise cancellation through the settings, accessing their personal profile from the avatar in the upper right corner of the interface. In the Devices item of the settings, you can choose between Auto, High, Low, Off modes.

These settings change the action of the technology on noises. In particular, the highest one requires a processor capable of supporting the AVX2 instruction set, excluding a priori video conferencing during recording or where automatic subtitles have been enabled. The low level, on the other hand, targets background sounds such as those of the computer fan or the air conditioning engine, annoying background presences that in the long run weigh down the listening.

Microsoft Teams, the other updates

Emoji are also part of the recent update. With the addition of 85 new images, availability also increases thanks to the implementation of new selectors that include a choice by category, skin color and a shortcode that simplifies searching and entering. Specifically, this implementation is available in the Teams client version for Windows 10, macOS, Linux and the browser version on Chrome, Firefox, Edge and Safari.

Among other new features present in the Teams update for Window 10 and macOS, also that of screen sharing through PowerPoint Live that becomes faster and with a different interface, more intuitive than before. Among the available options is one that involves using sound in a window, as well as a whiteboard for sharing ideas.