The Microsoft logo on top of a wireless board. representing the new microsoft metaverse

The Microsoft metaverse is coming.

The Microsoft metaverse is coming to Microsoft Teams in early 2022. With the announcement of Mesh moving to Microsoft Teams, we can expect to see; avatars, virtual reality spaces, and new ways to communicate in mixed reality. 

How will the latest way of working collaboratively benefit your remote and hybrid workforce? Microsoft’s announcement is a small step compared to Meta’s October announcement but it’s enough to establish Microsoft as an early leader of the new virtual metaverse platform concept.

What is the Microsoft Metaverse, and what will it look like?

The Metaverse has become an overnight buzzword, but what does it mean? Metaverse refers to the virtual world where users can share experiences and interact in simulated scenarios in real-time. 

Whilst Facebook’s Metaverse is a space for play, accessed via VR headsets, Microsoft focuses on improving life within the 9-5. With the integration of Microsoft Mesh into Teams, Microsoft’s Metaverse will revolutionise the way that people hold virtual meetings, making them engaging and accessible everywhere.

What is Microsoft Mesh?

Microsoft Mesh is an existing product that will be the foundation of the metaverse. The application allows users in different physical locations to join shared holographic experiences. Once combined with Microsoft Teams productivity tools, people will share and communicate in more creative ways. 

Similar to many of its post-lockdown products, Mesh is built to encourage team collaboration and eliminate meeting fatigue through avatars and interactive virtual spaces. Instead of engaging with a static profile picture, you’ll be able to establish eye contact, read facial expressions and gestures with these new 3D avatars in Mesh.

How will it benefit remote teams?

As many businesses have agreed on a remote or hybrid working arrangement with their employees, the latest announcement will be fundamental to keeping these workers engaged with the company. The aim is to make employees will feel more comfortable communicating and collaborating in video meetings, and there’s also less pressure to keep cameras on throughout the meeting.

Microsoft hopes the new way of working will boost collaboration and help employees feel more connected with their co-workers.

The future of the 9-5

Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve seen articles, webinars, and seminars discussing techniques that will boost productivity in video meetings. Microsoft was one of the first to discuss the concept of “video meeting fatigue” and boost collaboration using tools that have become the crux of the Modern Workplace.

“We got hit by meeting fatigue in the virtual world,” explains Nicole Herskowitz, general manager for Microsoft Teams. “After 30 or 40 minutes max in a meeting, it was tough to stay engaged and focused.” That initial meeting fatigue led to Together Mode, and now Microsoft hopes Mesh will further help reduce the cognitive overload of having to be on video calls all day long.

The Microsoft metaverse arrives early 2022

The exact launch date is yet to be officially announced. Reports suggest we’ll be using virtual spaces and creating virtual versions of ourselves in the first half of 2022. 

If your business is looking to purchase a new Microsoft licence, they can expect these features to be a part of their Microsoft Teams in early 2022. Whilst Together Mode is already a part of Microsoft Teams, Mesh can not be purchased in your licence subscription before this date.

Are you ready to join the Microsoft metaverse?

If you’re looking to purchase or renew, we can help you procure your Microsoft 365 or Office 365 licences before the new “metaverse” updates come into place. With apps like Yammer, Teams, SharePoint, and Power BI already included, you’ll have plenty of time to learn to navigate your new business software before the big update.

Until March 2022, you can increase or decrease your licence subscriptions. Giving you plenty of wiggle room to work out your business needs.

Stay ahead of the curve with us, and you’ll get an additional 2% off your bill for as long as we’re your CSP.

Stay ahead of the curve with Microsoft

Modernise your business processes and excel as a team with a Microsoft suite of productivity apps to get ready for the new way of working within virtual spaces. Request a quick call back from our sales team, and we’ll provide a free licence consultancy review.