Microsoft has announced that its Designer tool, which uses artificial intelligence to generate graphics and text for various purposes, is now available in the free version of Teams. Furthermore, the company says Microsoft Teams is getting a major update that will bring communities to Windows 11, similar to those on Discord.
Designer was previously only accessible through the web or Microsoft Edge. It allows Teams users to create presentations, posters, digital postcards and more with the help of generative AI technology.
In April, Microsoft 365 subscribers got access Designer without a waitlist. The app, which debuted in beta last year, uses artificial intelligence to help users create amazing visuals and graphics for different purposes.
Microsoft announced a major integration of DALL∙E 2 in Azure DevOps Service at Ignite 2022, leveraging its strong partnership with OpenAI. This tool later became Microsoft Designer. It brings DALL∙E 2 features to Windows 11 users, offering AI art capabilities. It works like an editor with drag-and-drop functionality. Microsoft competes with apps like Canva with this tool.
Users can create illustrative elements with Designer in Microsoft Office. It has text editing, templates, and stock images and videos. The AI excels at creating realistic images from art and adding natural language descriptions to them.
DALL-E 2 is an image-generating AI that Microsoft and OpenAI co-created. Microsoft provided an Azure-powered supercomputer to build the AI. This was the same computing system that created the GPT AI engine, which is now at GPT-4 and powering services such as Bing Chat and Microsoft 365 Copilot.
How to use Designer in Teams?
Designer is available in preview on Windows 11 for Teams users starting today. Users can access Designer by clicking on the “Create” button in the Teams app and choosing “Designer” from the options. Users can then enter a text prompt or upload an image to start generating designs. Users can also edit and refine their designs using the tools on the canvas.
Microsoft plans to add more features and functionality to Designer in the future, such as advanced editing features, integration with other Microsoft 365 apps and services, and monetization through Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscriptions. However, some of the tool's functionality will remain free for all users.
Microsoft Communities Take Inspiration from Discord
Communities are a way for people to connect and collaborate around shared interests, and they will be integrated into the Windows 11 taskbar. You may remember Microsoft initially introduced Communities in Teams back in December 2022, although the tool has been limited to mobile since then.
With communities, users will be able to create and join groups based on their interests, such as work, hobbies, or school. Within each community, users can chat, share files, and collaborate on projects. Communities will also have their own dedicated space in the Windows 11 taskbar, making it easy to access and stay connected with your community members.
Core Features of communities in Microsoft Teams include:
- Create and join communities: Users can create and join communities based on their interests, such as work, hobbies, or school.
- Chat, share files, and collaborate on projects: Within each community, users can chat, share files, and collaborate on projects.
- Dedicated space in the Windows 11 taskbar: Communities will have their own dedicated space in the Windows 11 taskbar, making it easy to access and stay connected with your community members.
- Custom backgrounds and themes: The designer will allow users to create custom backgrounds and themes for their Teams meetings.