Announced in October 2020, Microsoft Team Panels will provide a space and time management tool in a native Teams format. Offered on displays designed to be located just outside or within meeting spaces, these panels will nurture the new hybrid workspace as employees begin returning to the office. Microsoft recently announced that the panels are now generally available from partner Crestron and will be available in April from Yealink with more partners to be announced later in the year.
With bright LED indicators, the displays will indicate from a distance whether or not a meeting room is available. The panels also allow employees to immediately book an available room or to scan for another time slot and reserve it for a future meeting. An employee looking to verify they are in the right place need only glance at the panel to see the space and upcoming or in progress meeting information. Teams Panels utilize the Exchange calendar for bookings, so users can view the free or busy status of a room at any time.
Microsoft Panels can be paired with Microsoft Teams Rooms or Surface Hub devices for a connected device experience. Via the Microsoft Teams Admin Center, Teams Panels can also be centrally provisioned, updated, and monitored.
Additionally, Microsoft will be rolling out the following features in the coming months:
- Room Capacity Warningleverages select in-room cameras to detect when the maximum people allowed per room is reached.
- Nearby Roomslets employees view the building floor plan and book another room when a space is unavailable.
- Room Check-in Notificationsends a message to the in-room display that people in the next meeting are waiting outside.
- Remove Unused Scheduled Roomidentifies and allows for the removal of ‘ghost’ meetings to free up unused meeting space time slots.