Microsoft has introduced “sign language view”, a new meeting experience in Teams that will assist signers – people who are deaf/hard of hearing, interpreters, and others who use sign language.
Sign language view will provide a more predictable, static meeting experience that will allow users to prioritise up to two other signers’ video streams for placement on centre stage.
“When sign language view is enabled, the prioritised video streams appear at the right aspect ratio and at the highest available quality. You can enable sign language view either on the fly during a meeting or as a setting that persists across all your calls,” Microsoft said in a blogpost.
When sign language view is enabled, designated signers remain visible on the centre stage as long as their video is activated.
Other participants can also be pinned or highlighted without encroaching on the signers’ space, according to the blogpost.
The company also made preferences “sticky”, which means there will be no more fiddling with features and views when a user joins a meeting.
The sign language view and accessibility pane are currently available only through a Public Preview available on a user-by-user basis, the blogpost added.
The tech giant will roll out to all commercial and government customers in the “coming weeks”.
To enable sign language view across meetings by default, in Microsoft Teams, go to Settings and more, then select Settings > Accessibility and then turn on Sign Language.