Microsoft’s AI-powered Designer tool comes to Teams

Designer, Microsoft’s AI-powered art-creation tool, is now available in Teams’ free edition. Starting today, Microsoft Teams users on Windows 11 may utilize Designer, a Canva-like tool, to create graphics for presentations, posters, digital postcards, and more to share on social media and other channels. The Designer takes written prompts or uploaded photos and uses OpenAI’s text-to-image AI, DALL-E 2, to generate designs — with drop-downs and text fields for more customization and personalization.

Designer, accessible over the web and via the sidebar in Microsoft’s Edge browser, was first revealed in October. New capabilities, such as caption creation and animated graphics, were introduced in April, and Microsoft indicated that more, such as sophisticated editing tools, are on the way.

Microsoft’s long-term plan is to monetize Designer via Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscriptions, but the firm hasn’t said how much it would cost. However, it has been said that part of the tool’s features would stay free. Which functionality is unknown?

Microsoft Integrates AI-Powered Designer Tool into Teams
(Image Credits: Microsoft)

Other changes to Teams mentioned today have nothing to do with Microsoft’s AI.

Now, people who use Microsoft’s free group texting app GroupMe can start Teams calls from any new or current group chat.

And starting this week, Windows 11 will support Teams’ communities feature, which lets users meet, share, and work together in groups like Discord. macOS and Windows 10 support will come later. Users of Windows 11 can build communities, host events, control content, and find out about future activities and events, just like users of other platforms can do with Teams communities.

Teams users will soon be able to join communities about parenting, games, gardening, technology, and online work thanks to a new feature called “communities discovery.” This feature will be available on Windows 11, iOS, and Android in the next few days. Microsoft says it’s up to the people who run groups on iOS and Android to ensure they can be found on Teams. Owners can accept or refuse requests to join their communities. They can also give ownership rights to other group members, make polls using MSForms, and send posts as emails if they want to.

In a similar change, users of the Teams group can now record movies from their mobile devices using a new capture experience with updated filters and marking tools. And on iOS, community owners can use the camera on their phone to scan and add email addresses or phone numbers from a web document, paper book, or other list.

Teams keep growing, largely helped by the rise of remote and mixed work. This means that a lot of new features are being added. From 2021 to 2022, the number of people who used Teams daily went from 145 million to 270 million, almost double.

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