Is Microsoft Teams Ready to Support 3D and VR Meetings?

Microsoft Teams Ready to Support 3D
Image: Microsoft

Yes, Microsoft Teams meetings will look quite different now that Microsoft Mesh is out beyond preview.

Today, Microsoft Teams will introduce its immersive 3D meetings. With the integration of Microsoft Mesh, the company’s mixed reality platform, into Teams, users will be able to convene in virtual environments with or without a virtual reality headset.

Mesh feels a lot like a corporate version of AltspaceVR, the social VR platform that Microsoft purchased in 2017 and shut down a year ago. I had the opportunity to test it out within Microsoft Teams at the end of last year. The 3D Mesh meetings in Teams function best with a VR headset, with Microsoft only supporting Meta’s Quest devices presently.

You may take part in 3D virtual meetings, and the amazing spatial audio function allows you to move away from other employees in a virtual environment to simulate having private chats much as you would in an office. With activities like bean bag throwing and icebreaker questions for distant coworkers you might not have met before, the 3D surroundings are also customizable.

Every basic Mesh feature, including Teams’ immersive areas, will be accessible to Microsoft Teams subscribers. It takes a Teams Premium license to set up a personalized immersive environment.

When I initially started using Microsoft Mesh about three years ago, I compared it to “the virtual future of Microsoft Teams meetings.” The integration of Microsoft Mesh with Teams seems like a logical next step, even though it still serves as a platform for developers to access VR and AR experiences.

Concerns about corporate acceptance of these kinds of virtual meetings still exist. Though it’s a small subset of the businesses that regularly use Teams, Microsoft claims that Accenture, BP, Takeda, and Mercy Ships are among the enterprises that are now utilizing Mesh. Although the Teams integration will be beneficial, Mesh already seems to be moving toward becoming a feature of Teams rather than a stand-alone application.

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