At MessageOps, we are constantly getting questions about Microsoft Teams. Especially with more and more companies adopting this chat and meeting tool, we came up with this handy list based on the top questions we receive from our community. Also check out our Useful Teams Tips & Tricks blog.

Microsoft Teams FAQs.

Microsoft has created an FAQ site that will help answer many of the frequently asked questions. Click here to access the FAQ page

What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is a chat and collaboration platform where all conversations, meetings, files, and notes can be accessed by team members in one place. This is an evergreen service that is continually evolving and developing.

How do I get Microsoft Teams?

Teams is included with Office 365 business and enterprise plans.

For mobile devices, go into the Apple App Store (for iOS devices) or the Google Play or Samsung App Store (for Android), and search for Microsoft Teams.

For more detailed instructions, follow the instructions specific to your device below:

How do I enable new features in Microsoft Teams?

You need to make sure your Teams client is using the latest version to see new enhancements. See step-by-step instructions here:

Where can I get information on how to use Microsoft Teams?

MessageOps provides extensive on-demand training videos at

Need Microsoft Teams Usage Metrics? We have a ton of utilization data for Microsoft Teams. Start a trial today!

What is a Team?

Teams are collections of people, content, and tools that center around different projects and jobs within an organization. In Microsoft Teams, team members can have conversations and share files, notes, and more.

What is a channel?

Channels are dedicated sections within a team to keep conversations organized by specific topics, projects, disciplines–whatever works for your team!

Which browsers are supported?

The Microsoft Teams app works in the following desktop browsers:

  • Internet Explorer 11
  • Microsoft Edge
  • The latest version of Chrome
  • The latest version of Firefox
  • Safari (was having issues)

What’s the difference between Team channels and private chats?

Team channels are places where everyone on the team can have open conversations. Private chats are only visible to those people in the chat.

What’s the difference between public and private Teams? 

You can choose to set the privacy setting for your team as either “public” or “private”. In public teams, any user in the organization can join. With private teams, only team owners can add people to the teams.

Can I collaborate with people outside of my organization into my Team?

Yes!  A team owner in Microsoft Teams can add and manage guests in their teams via the web or desktop. Anyone with a business or consumer email accounts, such as Outlook, Gmail, or others, can participate as a guest in Teams with full access to team chats, meetings, and files. Only people who are outside of your organization, such as partners or consultants, can be added as guests. People from within your organization can join as regular team members.

This does also require Guest Access to be enabled at the organization level. Best practices are to invite external guests into teams which are meant for them. There are security implications with inviting outside users into your internal company teams which companies should consider before enabling this.

Can the team members or guests leave the Team on their own?

Yes. Any member or guest can leave the team at any time via Teams web or desktop clients.

How do I make sure people in a Team or channel see my message?

The best way is to @mention them. Type @ before someone’s name and they will get a notification.

To get the attention of an entire channel, type @channel before your message and the channel will receive notifications.

To get the attention of the entire team, type @team before your message and all your teammates will receive notifications.

What are the tabs in Microsoft Teams? 

Tabs allow team members to access services on a dedicated section within a channel or in a chat. Tabs acts as shortcuts for team members to work directly with tools and data and have conversations about them in the context of the channel or chat. Tabs can be added to help users easily access and manage the data they need or interact with the most.

Are my files and conversations in Microsoft Teams secure?

Microsoft Teams is built on the Office 365 hyper-scale, enterprise-grade cloud, delivering the advanced security and compliance capabilities. Data is encrypted in transit and at rest.

Files are stored in SharePoint and are backed by SharePoint encryption. Notes are stored in OneNote and are backed by OneNote encryption.

What’s the difference between Microsoft Teams and Team Sites? 

Team Sites are internal SharePoint websites that can be used to collaborate with your colleagues in Office 365. Microsoft Teams is a collaboration tool that provides instant messaging and video conferencing capabilities.

Can I rename a Team? 

Microsoft Teams are named starting with the prefix O365_. This prefix is required to prevent the creation of teams that duplicate existing names in the organization’s namespace. A team name cannot be renamed after it has been created; however, you can change its display name.

I deleted a Team. Can I restore it? 

A deleted team can be restored by an Office 365 administrator up to thirty days after the team was deleted.

Teams and team content can also be recovered using SkyKick Cloud Backup – our preferred backup for Office 365.

Do I still need Skype for Business?  

Both Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business provide instant messaging, videoconferencing, and audio-conferencing features. Microsoft has stated that they plan on retiring Skype for Business and fully replacing it with Microsoft Teams in the future. However, Skype for Business will remain available to users for the time being, and the solution you choose is up to you and your department.

Skype will reach end of life on July 31st, 2021. All companies must transition to Teams by that date, but the sooner the better. Teams has already far surpassed Skype’s capability.

How do I have a dial in number show up when I create and send out a meeting?

When you are setting up audio conferencing for a Teams meeting, Dial in numbers are automatically assigned to your organization. To see the numbers associated to your audio conference bridge in the Teams admin center, go to Meetings> conference bridges. An extra license is required

What are the differences between desktop and mobile Teams apps? (Special emphasis on questions around iPad, seems like less functionality for many such as not being able to share screen, audio issues, inability to record meetings, difficulty sharing control etc.)

Tabbed browsing makes it much easier to navigate throughout the client. Guest tenant usage is much better in Teams in a browser, as you can have your desktop client remain in your “home” tenant for calls/chats/meetings as normal. Visually the only difference is the web client gives you access to the Office365 waffle menu. Other than that, I cannot tell a huge productivity difference.

Every client has some advantages and disadvantages. On mobile, joining and leaving meetings is very simple, meant for easy mobility on the road. Things like screen sharing aren’t as robust as the desktop.

One other major disadvantage of the mobile client is needing multiple apps installed. For example, in the desktop version you can open Word, Excel, Planner etc in a tab inside of Teams. You don’t need those apps installed on the desktop, Teams serves them directly. On the mobile app, clicking on Planner will prompt you to install or open the Planner app, it cannot open in Teams.

 How do I set it up so meeting attendees can bypass the lobby?

Select meeting options.  Once selected, you will be taken to a web page in the O365 environment to change the meeting options. You can select “everyone” in the “who can bypass the lobby” drop down menu. This ensures no one is sent to the lobby of the meeting.

The Meeting Options link is at the top of the Details tab in your Teams calendar:

How can I set it so all attendees must go through the lobby? Can I send people out of and back into the lobby?

Select meeting options at the bottom of the meetings window. Once selected, you will be taken to a web page in the O365 environment to change the meeting options. You can select “everyone” in the “who can bypass the lobby” drop down menu. This ensures no one is sent to the lobby of the meeting or keeps them in the lobby until you admit them.

This can also be set in the Teams Admin Center under Meetings -> Meeting Policies -> Participants and Guests.

What is the maximum number of attendees in a Teams meeting?

250 (right now)

Can I pop out a single chat into its own window from Teams?

No, but Teams creates a “viewer” window inside the app. – Old Version? (You can pop-out a chat window several ways. First, find someone you want to chat with in your chat list and either double-click a chat or select the Pop-out chat option from the […] menu or the fly-out icon).  A new Teams windowed mode is coming starting in June.

How do I change the view of attendees to see more or less people on my screen?

The number of people on the screen is set, you cannot change it. It was 4 but has just recently increased to 9. Any companies that don’t have the 9-person view will have it within the next week.

Can I use my phone as a document camera in conjunction with a Teams meeting?

Absolutely. You can share your phones camera or camera roll to stream or view and share a photo. Access the […] more options then select “share”.

How can I set up configurations for different meetings where some I need all attendees muted and in others I have the ability to mute/unmute people as needed?

Currently, you can’t. While Microsoft has made improvements such as joining the meeting muted, and being able to mute someone, Members of Teams meetings can unmute at any time. Policing is therefore needed. There are multiple user voices for it including this.

I would recommend voting to push it up the agenda. Microsoft are very aware of this requirement, and with the development of muting whilst joining I would imagine you may see it on the roadmap relatively soon in the future. Microsoft is also working on other classroom style virtual functionality such as raise hand. Vote it up here.

You could look at potentially using Live Events in Teams to do this, which are like Ted talks where one person talks and the attendees do Q&A.

Is there a list of all possible shortcuts for Teams?

Yes, there is a list in the Teams client under the user’s profile picture (or initials) where they can select the “keyboard shortcuts” option and it will display all available shortcuts.

You can also easily access the keyboard shortcut keys by pressing Ctl+E to go to the search field, type /keys, and then press enter.

Can you add a tile that acts as a counter for a due date for a common team on Teams?

You can use activity reports in the Microsoft 365 admin center to see how users in your organization are using Microsoft Teams.

1.     In the Microsoft 365 admin center, select Reports > Usage.

2.     On the Usage page, choose Select a report, and then under Microsoft Teams in the list of reports, choose the report you want to view.

Can you share via Bluetooth on Teams as you can on Zoom?

Assuming they are asking about audio devices such as headphones.  Yes, you can connect your device to the proper Bluetooth device and at the bottom click on the speaker icon. This will allow you to select your audio output.


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