There is only so much we can do these days to change up our workstations. Some of us had to clear off the kitchen table, some of us are stuck in a basement, some of us might be on the couch……regardless of where your new office is located, you are probably sick of staring at the same four walls. There isn’t too much we can do to fix that; however, Microsoft Teams offers two ways for users to transform their backgrounds.

You can go the simple blur method, effectively smudging your background into gray mass. Or, you can choose from a series of custom backgrounds to replace your real-life office. What could be better than having your week-end meeting sitting on a beach? Well at least pretending to be sitting on a beach.

When you’re setting up your video and audio for your next meeting, click on the tab that says Background effects. The option is located to the right-hand side of the microphone. Your background options will show up on the right of the screen. If you just want to blur your background, then click on Blur. If you want to change your entire background, click on one of the images provided.

If you want to alter your background after having already joined a meeting, click on your meeting controls, and tap More Actions > Show background effects. Once again, you’ll have the option to blur your background or choose an image to replace your office entirely.

If you are a former Zoom user, you know that backgrounds is the area they are superior to Teams, at least for now. The number of images Teams provides as backgrounds is limited, but don’t worry, there is a work around. You will need to be running the latest version of Microsoft Teams to use this workaround option.

To implement your own custom background, navigate through the file system by using the following pathway on Windows: %APPDATA%\Microsoft\Teams\Backgrounds\Uploads – you can just copy and paste that into your search bar in Windows. On a Mac, your backgrounds will appear within the client folder for Microsoft Teams, search for: /Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Teams/Backgrounds.

Hold down the option key if you are having a hard time finding the right library here. Once you have access to the right folders on Windows or Mac, then you can add your own backgrounds in a couple of clicks. Copy-paste the file that you want from your pictures or documents into the folder that you have within Microsoft Teams. Alternatively, drag and drop your images into place. Simple as that.

Although we can’t change the four walls you are staring at, we are here to help brighten up your workday any way we can. 2W Tech is a technology service provider specializing in solutions for the manufacturing industry. We are a Microsoft Gold Partner and have IT Consultants on staff that specialize in the Microsoft 365 solutions. Give us a call today if you need help with Microsoft Teams, or any of their other applications.

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