Microsoft Teams recently gained the ability to let users set custom backgrounds for video calls. The feature apparently wasn’t persistent and required to be set every time users start a new meeting. Well, not anymore. Microsoft has now made the virtual background permanent and it will remain the same unless you manually change again.
“I’m happy to share that the default background feature is live. The background you choose will now persist in all of your meetings and calls, until you decide to change it,” wrote Microsoft’s Alex in a forum post on Microsoft Teams UserVoice.
In case you didn’t know already, you can change the background either before a meeting starts or during a meeting. To change the background beforehand, head to ‘Background effects’ and upload the image you prefer using the ‘Add new’ option. The supported image formats are .jpg, .png, and .bmp. On the other hand, you can change the background while you’re in a meeting from More Actions -> Show background effects -> Add new.
Microsoft mentions that custom backgrounds are not live for Linux users just yet. In addition, it is worth pointing out that background effects will not be available if you’re using Teams through optimized virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).
Microsoft Teams is not the only video conferencing platform that has added support for custom backgrounds. Almost all mainstream video calling platforms including Zoom and Cisco Webex support the feature, especially because of the increased adoption due to the pandemic. Also, Google Meet will add support for custom backgrounds this October.