Microsoft Whiteboard in Microsoft 365 is a free-form, digital new canvas where people, content, and ideas come together. Whiteboard lets team members collaborate in real time, wherever you are. It also gives your ideas room to grow with an infinite canvas designed for pen, touch, and keyboard.
Here are just some of the things you can do in Whiteboard:
- Running effective meetings
- Learning and coaching
- Sprint planning
- Project management
- Problem solving
- Continuous improvement
- Incident management
Microsoft Whiteboard is available on the following platforms:
- In your web browser via https://whiteboard.office.com
- In Microsoft Teams meetings, chats, and channels: Whiteboard integration in Microsoft Teams meetings is powered by Whiteboard for the web, which lets participants of Teams meetings collaborate together on a shared digital canvas.
Here are some of the key benefits of using Whiteboard in Teams:
- Bring teams together in one inclusive space for co-creation: You can now create a new whiteboard or open up an existing one directly in a Teams meeting. There’s no need to switch between apps or share your screen.
- Real time collaboration across all devices: Everyone in the meeting can view and edit the board simultaneously across any device, allowing them to bring new ideas and co-create together.
- Re-use an existing Whiteboard across multiple meetings: Users can choose an existing whiteboard to share in a Teams meeting. This allows you to prepare a whiteboard ahead of time or continue working iteratively on a project.
- Download for Windows
- Download for iOS
- Download for Android
- Download for Surface Hub devices
After you’ve downloaded Whiteboard to your device or opened the web version in your browser, sign in with your Microsoft account.
When you launch the Whiteboard web experience or any of the standalone Whiteboard apps, you’ll start with the board picker:
Here, you can find all the whiteboards that you’ve previously created or accessed. To create a new board, select the New Whiteboard tile.
You will be presented to choose from different templates or start from scratch – Start with blank canvas.
As always Microsoft created a lot of useful templates and sort them out in different categories for easy navigation. If you choose to start from scratch and use the blank canvas here is how it looks like and the menu:
At the top left side: Here, you can select Home to go back to the board picker or change the name of your current board.
At the bottom center you can find:
- Select (Alt+S) option if the whiteboard is too big and you need to navigate to the right place.
- Inking (Alt+W) if you want to draw or write something you have the option to choose from different colorful pens
- Yellow highlighter (Alt+H) to highlight something, of course you can choose a different color and the thickness of the highlighter)
- Laser pointer (Alt+L) if you want to point the audience to right section
- Partial eraser (Alt+X) if you want to delete something
- Ruler (Alt+R) if you have to measure something
- Lasso select (Alt+Q) for selecting multiple objects
Next to Inking is Add note or note grid the little sticky note icon. You can add different colorful sticky notes or a grid of colorful notes:
The next option allows you to add reaction (the little heart icon) on the Whiteboard and express your feelings about a topic:
The next two icons (comments and text) allow you to add comments (Alt+C) and Text on the whiteboard and write what you want the other to see.
The next icon in the menu gives you the opportunity to add shape and/or line to your Whiteboard:
And the last option (the 3 dots) from the bottom center section allows you to add templates, images, documents, Loop components, videos and links:
On the top right side, you will find the following options:
- Timer – setup a time in which your team should collaborate or discuss a certain topic, so you can strictly follow your agenda and not go beyond the scheduled meeting.
- Follow me – Follow allows you to have participants on a whiteboard follow your point of view as you move around the canvas to discuss and make edits. It’s a great way to present material created on Whiteboard, as well as guide participants through activities and sessions.
- Who is interacting with you on your Whiteboard
- Share – to share a link or send an email with details for this Whiteboard to your team
- Settings menu – from here you can export the Whiteboard as an image or zip file and send it to the right team or people, use collaborative cursors or enhance inked shapes, enable or disable comments authors, format the background by choosing a different color and grid (solid, dot, square, graph, hybrid, diamond, wide rule, triangle, narrow rule), find help if you don’t know something about Whiteboard, send feedback to Microsoft about Whiteboard, details about the Whiteboard and manage the privacy and security.
Collaboration is the heart of Whiteboard, and here’s how to do it:
- In Microsoft Teams: While in a Teams meeting, you can share a whiteboard from the Share tray, or you can also prepare your board ahead of time and then present it. In a Teams channel or chat, you can add a whiteboard by selecting the + button at the top of the screen, and then searching for Whiteboard.
Here are some of the key benefits of using Whiteboard in Teams:
- Bring teams together in one inclusive space for co-creation – You can now create a new whiteboard or open up an existing one directly in a Teams meeting. There’s no need to switch between apps or share your screen.
- Real time collaboration across all devices – Everyone in the meeting can view and edit the board simultaneously across any device, allowing them to bring new ideas and co-create together.
- Re-use an existing Whiteboard across multiple meetings – Users can choose an existing whiteboard to share in a Teams meeting. This allows you to prepare a whiteboard ahead of time or continue working iteratively on a project.
- In standalone Whiteboard apps: Select the Share button at the top right, where you can generate a Share link. Send this link to your participants. You can collaborate outside of a meeting or share your screen during a meeting — the choice is yours!
You can use Whiteboard on almost every device whether you use a mouse and keyboard, screen reader, touchscreen, or a pen.
For example, you can use your Surface Pen to fully unlock drawing and erasing on your Surface device, a stylus or your finger to interact on a touchscreen, or your mouse and keyboard and let Whiteboard’s ink beautification feature make your lines and shapes look perfect.
Microsoft Whiteboard is constantly changing and evolving, and below are some of the latest features added to Whiteboard:
- Open existing whiteboards in Teams meetings – Users can now choose an existing whiteboard to share in a Teams meeting. This allows you to prepare a whiteboard ahead of time or continue working iteratively on a project.
- Add annotations in Microsoft Teams – Annotations allow you to collaborate on a design, template, or presentation while sharing your screen in a Teams meeting. Everyone in the meeting can begin annotating right away, and collaborative cursors make it easy to view changes made by all participants.
- Collaborate with external users in Teams meetings – With the transition to OneDrive for Business storage, you can now collaborate on a whiteboard with participants from other organizations in real time. Please note that your administrator will need to ensure the proper settings are enabled before you can use this functionality.
- Add links and online videos to a whiteboard – You can now add clickable links directly to a whiteboard. Depending on the link, it will show up as a link, preview the content, or if it’s a supported video it will display the video and allow you to play and pause it directly on the whiteboard.
- Lock and unlock objects – Whiteboard lets you lock any object to the canvas so that it cannot be moved around. It’s also easy to unlock all objects at once.
- Insert Bing images – The latest version makes it easy to add Bing images to a whiteboard.
Microsoft Whiteboard is very powerful, collaboration tool that will increase your team productivity and allows you to properly manage your projects, tasks or goals. If you need more clarification or assistance about Microsoft Whiteboard do not hesitate to contact Impactory GmbH. We have more than 10 years of experience with all Microsoft 365 services and apps and will help you to find the right solution for your company.
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