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Microsoft Teams' Walkie Talkie feature now widely available

Microsoft Teams' Walkie Talkie feature now widely available

Microsoft is making its walkie talkie feature of Microsoft Teams generally available to all users of its communications app today. Walkie Talkie lets Microsoft Teams users turn a smartphone or tablet into a walkie-talkie that works over cellular data or Wi-Fi. It was originally announced two years ago and has been available mostly in preview since then. The feature was widely launched on Android in September 2020, but now Microsoft says it is available for Zebra mobile devices as well as iPhone and iPad.

Microsoft has primarily placed it for frontline workers, customer facing employees, and day-to-day operations inside companies. The software maker's collaboration with Zebra Technologies outfits it with a dedicated push-to-talk button for quick and secure communication. These tools are widely used by frontline workers, activists who have helped steer the world through the ongoing pandemic.

Walkie-talkie features are still a rarity in communication apps. WhatsApp lets you record snippets of audio instead of sending and receiving it, and Slack introduced its Discord-like Huddles feature last year so people can easily drop in and out of calls. Apple launched its walkie-talkie feature on the Apple Watch in 2018 using push-to-talk over FaceTime audio calls.

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