Six things to know about chat in Microsoft Teams

Applies to: Microsoft Teams.

Chat is central to anything you do in Teams. Whether it be individual chats with only one other person or group chats and conversations in channels—chat handles everything. 

Listed are the six key aspects to know about chat:

1. Chats can be one-on-one or in a group.

Often, you’ll want to talk one-on-one with someone. For other cases, you’ll prefer to have a small group chat. In Chat, you can do either.

You begin one-on-one and group chats the same way: by choosing New chat Chat icon in Teams. at the top of your chat list. While in a chat, you can then send messages that embody files, links, emojis, stickers, and GIFs—anything you require to express yourself the way you seek to!

To start a chat, select New chat at the top of Teams.

Here are some further details about each kind of chat.

One-on-one chat

When you’ve picked New chat Chat icon in Teams. and entered the person’s name, compose your message in the box and press Send Send a message icon. . This commences the chat.

Send a message to someone in Teams

Group chat

Utilise a group chat anytime you want to talk to a small group of people. Begin one the same way you start a one-on-one chat: pick New chat New chat button in Teams at the top of your chat list. Click the down arrow to the far right of the To field and enter a name for the chat in the Group name field. Next, write the names of the people you’d like to add in the To field.

Name a group chat in Teams.

After the chat has begun (whether group or one-on-one), just select it in the chat list to dive back into it and send more messages.

Name your group chat so you can find it.

2. Press Shift+Enter to start a new line.

If you keep pressing Enter to start a new line, which proceeds with sending the message before you’re ready, test this tip:

Anytime you want to start a new paragraph, press Shift+Enter to add the line break, and you’re done. FYI—If you’ve opened-up all your formatting options (see step 3 for details), you can press Enter to begin a new line of text.

Start a new line of text in a message

3. Select Format to see all your formatting options.

There are multiple formatting options for messages.

To open your formatting options, press Format Format button in Teams below the box where you input your message. In this expanded view, choose your desired text to format, then select an option like B, I, or U to bold, italicise, or underline the text.

Format a message in Teams.

There are even options for highlighting, font size, lists, and more. Explore More options Format icon in Teams. for extra formatting options, and the buttons under the box for embedding a file or adding fun stuff like emoji.

4. Chat happens in channels, too.

Once you visit any channel in Teams, the very first tab is Posts. Picture this as one big group chat. Everyone with this channel access can view the messages on the Posts tab.

Send a message to a channel conversation.

You’ll have to decide according to your organisation and culture what messages are appropriate for the Posts tab in a particular channel.

The other vital thing to know about messages in a channel is that replies to a channel message stay attached to the original message. This way, the entire thread of the conversation can be easily followed by anyone reading it. This is the excellence of threaded conversations!

To reply to a channel message, ensure to use the little Reply link beneath the message.

Reply to a channel conversation.

5. There are a few ways to search for and find messages.

Based on what you remember about the sender of the message or the characteristics of the message, an alternative way of finding it may be most practical.

Find a chat based on a person’s name

Enter the person’s name in the command box at the top of the app. You’ll notice their name and any group chats they’re active in with you listed. Choose their name to find your one-on-one chat with them, or a group chat to continue that one.

Search by name in Teams.

Find a message that has a keyword that you remember

Begin writing a keyword into the command box at the top of the app and press Enter. You’ll observe a list of results that contain the keyword.

Filter to show certain types of messages

From the Activity feed, choose Filter Filter button in Teams to display specific types of messages such as unread messages, @mentions, replies, and likes. For a deeply refined search, select the Feed menu and click My Activity.

Find your saved messages

To save a message, press Save message Save message icon in Teams by the right of the text.

Message options in Teams

To check a list of your saved messages, click your profile picture at the top of the app, then select Saved. Or simply enter /saved in the command box at the top of the app.

Saved messages in Teams

6. Hide or mute chats to keep them out of your way.

Although you can’t delete a complete chat conversation in Teams, you can conceal the chat from the chat list, or mute it so you cease receiving notifications. For details, see Hide, mute, or pin a chat in Teams

(You are able to delete individual messages that you’ve sent.)

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