How can we make Microsoft Teams better?

Better visual delineation between `Reply` and `Start a new conversation`

It's very confusing to new users that there is a difference between replying to an existing conversation and starting a new one within a channel. This is a visual thing as much as anything else. The 'reply' buttons are not naturally attractive if you just want to start typing a message. There should be a logical gap between the bottom of a conversation and 'start a new conversation'. 'Start a new conversation' needs to be separated visually, as if it's a second order command rather than a first order...reply.

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Stephen Ellis shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

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  • Graham Helliwell commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    "New thread" and "New topic" would both be better than the options listed. I think the button being on the right hand side in the mobile app is also a useful separation that could be copied.

  • Martina Oefelein commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Neither option addresses the problem that "start a new conversation" is much more prominent than "Reply" and thus users start a new conversation when they actually want to reply. If at all, they new colored buttons are even more prominent than the old text box, so will make the problem worse.

  • Tom commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Personally I'm not a fan of the button - I preferred the actual text entry field at the bottom of the feed.

  • Mark Owen commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I'll echo a couple of other comments. You'd be better off having a greyed out edit box at the bottom of a thread or other reply, when clicked will swap to an actual editing box and side load any code to allow the user to start typing. Same as present but not with a virtually hidden reply button, something more obvious. That's already used elsewhere.

    Also the option, would it not be better to steal the new tweet button from Twitter. Using a pencil icon as common iconography that then is language independent, also at the bottom.

    Basically please use conventions elsewhere that people are familiar with and stop trying to reinvent everything. Some problems have already been solved.

  • Christoph commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It's great to see that things are happening and I appreciate that you are asking users for feedback. I was a bit surprised, though, when I saw the three options to are considering in the survey. Given those alternatives, I dare say that the result is quite predictable: most people will obviously prefer "New conversation". ("New chat" will be the second option, but most will probably reject it as too informal and/or potentially confusing as the term is already used elsewhere in Teams. And "New Post", frankly, should not have been in the survey in the first place because it contradicts the very purpose of distinguishing replies from new conversations, which is what this "feature request" is about.)

    So I'm left wondering what the purpose of this survey is, after all. There are other terms that could meaningfully have competed with "New Conversation", such as "New Topic", or "New Thread". The fact that it they were omitted suggest that someone at Microsoft is fighting trying to explain to their colleagues that "New Conversation" is the best option and needs some backing for that from the users. Fair enough. I also think that is the best option, but it's sad to see that some people at microsoft don't see this as already evident from what has been said here over the past 1.5 years.

  • Chris commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The Teams mobile client works really well with this distinction. The desktop/web version needs to be more like the mobile version.

  • L. Günther commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Looks like your snapshots are to small:
    What you see when enlarging them is a reply input box and a button to create a new conversation. There is no "Reply button". And this is how it should be.
    The name must be same as the object, so if in conversation it should be "new conversation". I also would agree with "new thread" to introduce this group-element into Teams.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I submitted the answer to the survey. It shall be called either New topic, New thread or New conversation. It's not a New chat for sure - this one will be confusing and misleading.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I have filled in the survey, but I have another feedback about those screenshots.
    Would it not be better if the reply link is changed to an editbox, so a user can reply immidiate, without first clicking the reply link.

    This is what I as a user would expect: an editbox for answering an existing thread. A button for creating a new one.

  • Mika Berglund commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It is not the text that is problematic. If the tab is called "Conversations", then the only option you have is "New Conversation". Anything else is confusing.

    The biggest problem though is the placement of the button. The layouts in your survey suggest that the "New Conversation" button is aligned below the "Reply" button for each conversation. When you scroll the contents, you will eventually end up with a situation where the "Reply" button is out of sight, but right there where we've learned to find the "Reply" button is the "New Conversation" button, so whatever that button says, we click it to reply. I do it by mistake sometimes, even though I know the difference between these two.

    You have this figured out in the mobile client, where the "New Conversation" button is a round button floating to the right, indicating that it is a completely different thing from the "Reply" button, which is on the other side of the screen.

    I suggest that you do a similar solution in the desktop client too.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I have filled in the survey, but I have another feedback about those screenshots.
    Would it not be better if the reply link is changed to an editbox, so a user can reply immidiate, without first clicking the reply link.

    This is what I as a user would expect: an editbox for answering an existing thread. A button for creating a new one.

  • Andreas commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Will this be an optional change? Preferably on a channel basis, it could possibly be done by allowing us to choose if a channel should have threads or not.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    You could use the same name for this button as the tabs name. For example in dutch, the tab is called GESPREKKEN, so the button should me called NIEUW GESPREK.

  • John Egleston commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Thanks for hearing our rants, Suphatra et al. I'm with the make-it-more-like-mobile crew, and changing the Conversations tab to Chat doesn't seem to fix much. Had my hopes up for a holiday delivery, but I'll be glad when it's done well. 8{)

  • Mark Szili commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    A real time persistent chat room application which is what Teams was promised to be, needs to look like IRC, Discord and Skype group chat ect. Having a reply button just make it look like a non realtime forum, so as a result everyone in my org just continues to use yammer and S4b. Rather than have a reply button the … could have an option to take the message to a new top tab as a secondary channel that could be dumped into an archive chat tab. Also dark mode, please make dark mode black / not grey. and please allow us to change windows colours to match desktop theme colours, that purple is horrible in dark mode.

  • Aaron commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Honestly, all three options are terrible. 'new chat' ??? it's not a chat at all!? Does the UI designer even use Teams?

    Get rid of the button entirely - it's not the right UI design. It's not the answer and i hope such a big problem isn't going to be 'fixed' by just renaming the button control, it needs a smarter answer.
    This is an appalling response to a 18 month old (plus)? problem..

  • Debbie Hilton commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I have completed the survey, however wanted to provide some additional feedback. The way Chat and Team conversations work is different at the moment, in that when you use "Chat" it posts straight away, the person is notified and you chat away. In Teams, there are conversations or threads, which an individual or group isn't notified of unless they are mentioned or follow the channel. In the screen shots in the survey you have renamed the Conversation tab in Teams to Chat, which I think is the confusing part. If the Chat part of Teams and the Teams conversations part (currently called Conversations on my version) are going to operating differently, it would be better if they had different names and the "New" button in the Teams area matchs the name of the tab.

  • Steven Waterman commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Take that button, and get rid of it!

    Seriously though, make it a choice on the top toolbar. Don't put a ton of emphasis on it. People will look for it when they need to. It doesn't matter what the wording is, it's a visual problem.

    Make this a toggle!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I hope @suphatra realizes there is a bug in the desktop version display of reply/new that doesn't exist on mobile...

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    @Suphatra - Thanks for this, but Wait... is the "conversations" tab getting renamed to "Chat" like you have in your screenshots? This is important because it will affect my vote. Also, I was hoping for "New Chat/Convo/Post" to be a big plus sign on the far right, like it appears in the Android app. Too late for this sort of feedback?

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