What are Teams live events?

This is a preview or early release feature.

Overview

Live events in Microsoft 365 enable users to broadcast video and content to large online audiences. Microsoft 365 live events bring live video streaming to a new level, encouraging connection throughout the entire engagement lifecycle with attendees before, during, and after live events. You can create a live event wherever your audience, team, or community resides, using Microsoft Stream, Microsoft Teams, or Yammer.

Microsoft Teams delivers chat-based collaboration, calling, meetings, and with live events, so you can expand the audience of your meetings. Microsoft Teams live events is an extension of Teams meetings, enabling users to broadcast video and meeting content to a large online audience. These are meant for one-to-many communications where the host of the event is leading the interactions and the audience participation is primarily to view the content shared by host. The attendees can watch the live or recorded event in Yammer, Teams, and/or Microsoft Stream, and can interact with the presenters using moderated Q & A or a Yammer conversation.

Teams live events are considered the next version of Skype Meeting Broadcast and will eventually replace the capabilities provided in Skype Meeting Broadcast. During the public preview release of Teams live events, we will continue to support Skype Meeting Broadcast, with no disruption in service for new or future events. However, we encourage you to try out Teams live events to leverage all of the new and exciting features including screen sharing, attendee count, and support for external hardware/software encoders.

So, let's get started. First, take a look at the following diagram that shows high level components involved in Microsoft 365 live events and how they are connected.

Teams live events

Key components

So, you can see from the picture above, there are four key components that are used with Live events in Microsoft Teams.

Scheduling

Teams provides the ability for the organizers to create an event with the appropriate attendee permissions, designate event team members, select production method, and invite attendees. If the live event was created from within a Yammer group, the live event attendees will be able to use Yammer conversation for interacting with people in the event.

Production

The live events in Microsoft 365 support a spectrum of production scenarios, include a quick start event using web cams or an external encoder event using studio quality equipment. The video input is the foundation of the Live events and it can vary from a single webcam to a multi-camera professional video production. You can choose these options depending on their project requirements and budget. There are two ways to produce events:

  • Quick start production: The quick start production method allows users to produce their live events using Teams meetings. This option is best and quickest option if you want to use the audio and video devices connected to the PC or are inviting remote presenters for participating in the event. This option allows users to easily use their web cams and share their screen as input into the event.

  • External encoder production: External encoders allow users to produce their live events directly from an external hardware or a software-based encoder with Microsoft Stream. This option is best if you already have studio quality equipment (for example, media mixers) which support streaming to an Real-time Messaging Protocol (RTMP) service. This type of production is typically used in large scale events such as executive town halls – where a single stream from a media mixer is broadcasted to the audience.

Streaming platform

The live event streaming platform is made up of the following four pieces:

  • Azure Media Services Azure Media Services gives you broadcast-quality video streaming services to reach larger audiences on today’s most popular mobile devices. Media Services enhances accessibility, distribution, and scalability, and makes it easy and cost-effective to stream content to your local or worldwide audiences — all while protecting your content.
  • Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN) Once your stream goes live, it is delivered through the Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN). Azure Media Services provides integrated CDN for streaming endpoints. This allows for the streams to be viewed worldwide with no buffering.
  • Enterprise Content Delivery Network (eCDN) The goal of eCDN is to take the video content from the internet and distribute the content throughout your enterprise without impacting the network performance. You can use one of the following certified eCDN partners to optimize your network for Live events held within your organization:
    • Hive
    • Kollective
    • Ramp
  • Attendee experience The attendee experience is the most important aspect of live events and it is critical that the attendees can participate in the live event without having any issues. The attendee experience uses Azure Media Player and works across desktop, browser, and mobile (iOS, Android). Office 365 provides Yammer and Teams as two collaboration hubs and the live attendee experience is integrated into these collaboration tools. The external encoder based live events can also be accessed by attendees in the Administrative tools.

Planning for live events

When you are planning Teams live events to hold large meetings in your organizaiton, there are several factors that you need to consider before starting to set it all up.

Who can create and schedule live events?

The following prerequisites are required for the user to schedule a Teams live event.

Here are the licenses that must be assigned:

  • An Office 365 Enterprise E3 or E5 license.
  • A Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, and Microsoft Stream license.

It's important to know that an Office 365 license is required to participate in a live event as an authenticated user but this depends on the production method used:

  • For Quick start production The user must be assigned a Microsoft Teams license.
  • For External encoder production The user must be assigned a Microsoft Stream license.

For more information on licensing, see Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams add-on licensing.

The user must have:

  • Private meeting scheduling in Teams enabled (The TeamsMeetingPolicy -AllowPrivateMeetingScheduling parameter = True).
  • Live event scheduling in Teams enabled (The TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -AllowBroadcastScheduling parameter = True).
  • Permissions to create live events in Microsoft Stream (for external encoder production).

Important

Office 365 guests, federated, and anonymous users can't be invited as producers or presenters in Teams live events. However, guest and federated users can join as anonymous Live event attendees.

Who can watch live events?

Attendee visibility Quick start External encoder
Public (anonymous users) Yes No
Guest users No No
Everyone in federated company No No
Everyone in company Yes Yes
Specific groups / people Yes Yes

Teams live events and Skype Meeting Broadcast

The following table highlights core capabilities and features offered in live events and how they differ from Skype Meeting Broadcast.

Capability Skype Meeting Broadcast Teams live events (Quick start) Teams live events (External encoder)
Maximum audience size 10,000 attendees 10,000 attendees* 10,000 attendees*
Live event creation Skype Meeting Broadcast Portal Teams, Yammer via Teams Teams, Yammer via Teams, Stream
Audience engagement – Yammer ✔ (integrated experience) ✔ (integrated experience)
Audience engagement – Moderated Q & A
Producer client on Windows ✔ (Skype for Business) ✔ (Teams) ✔ (Stream, Teams via Stream Embed)
Producer client on Mac X ✔ (Teams) ✔ (Stream, Teams via Stream Embed)
Attendee count in Producer UI X ✔ (Teams) ✔ (Stream, Teams via Stream Embed)
Allows multiple presenters ✔ (Skype for Business) ✔ (Teams) N/A
Invite a presenter during the meeting ✔ (Skype for Business) X N/A
Presenter join on Web and Mobile ✔ (Skype for Business) X N/A
Presenter – PSTN access X ✔ (Teams) N/A
Present a screen X ✔ (Teams) N/A
Present a PowerPoint (PPT Sharing) X (mitigated via screen sharing) N/A
Cloud based meeting recording
Auto Publish Recording to Microsoft Stream X X
Real Time Captions and Translation ✔ (coming soon) X
Captions in live event recordings ✔ (coming soon)
Attendee DVR controls (pause, rewind)
Partner eCDN Support ✔ (Hive, Kollective, Ramp) ✔ (coming soon) ✔ (Hive, Kollective, Ramp)
Post-broadcast attendance report for Producers ✔ (feature release) X
Audience Sentiment Analysis – Live voting & polls ✔ (Microsoft Pulse) X X

Important

The limits that are set might be changed.

Regional availability

You can use Teams live events in multiple regions across the world. The following information shows availability for event team members and attendees.

Important

The region for the event is automatically selected depending on the organizer and the Office 365 organization.

Available in these regions

  • Americas
  • Europe/Africa
  • Asia Pacific

Exclusions and considerations

  • Go Locals: Unitied Kingdom (U.K.), India, and other Microsoft Teams Go Locals are not currently supported.
  • Go Local - Canada: During this preview offering you can create events but their data will be homed in North America region.
  • China: Event team members and attendees will not be able to use Teams live events because Azure CDN is not accessible in China. A workaround is to use a company VPN connection, which gets the client connected to CDN via the customer's corporate network.

Setting up for live events

When you are setting up for live events, there are several steps that you must take:

Step 1: Set up your network for live events in Microsoft Teams

The quick start live events require you to prepare your organization's network for Microsoft Teams.

Step 2: Get and assign licenses

Ensure you have correct license assignments for Who can create and schedule live events? and Who can watch live events?.

Step 3: Enable live event scheduling for users

Live event scheduling is enabled by default for Teams users but if you are wanting users to schedule external encoder events there are additional steps that you must do.

For quick start events

Use the setting AllowBroadcastScheduling in TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy in Teams PowerShell to control whether the user can create live events in Teams or not. You can learn more about managing TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy here.

If you haven't assigned a custom policy assigned to the users, the users will get the Global policy, which has recording enabled by default.

Verify that AllowBroadcastScheduling parameter is set to True:

Get-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity Global

Then assign the user to the Global policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName $null -Verbose
User scenarios

You want all users in your company to be able to create live events.

If users are assigned the Glocal policy, run and verify that AllowBroadcastScheduling is set to *True:

Get-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity Global

If the users are assigned a policy other than the Global policy, run the following and verify that -AllowBroadcastScheduling is set to True:

Get-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity {policy name}

You want live event scheduling to be 100% disabled across your organization.

Disable broadcast scheduling, run:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity Global -AllowBroadcastScheduling $false

Assign all users in your organization to the Global policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName $null -Verbose

You want a large number of users to be able to create live events, but want to prevent a set of users from creating them.

Assign the Global policy using the Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy for some of the users (that you want enabled) but first run the following and verify that AllowBroadcastScheduling is set to True:

Get-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity Global

Then assign a user or users to the Global policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName $null -Verbose

Create and assign a policy for disabling scheduling using the Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy cmdlet to the other users (you want disabled).

Create the new policy with it disabled, run:

New-CSTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity DisabledBroadcastSchedulingpolicy

Disable scheduling, run:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity DisabledBroadcastSchedulingpolicy -AllowBroadcastScheduling $false

Then assign users to this policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName DisabledBroadcastSchedulingpolicy -Verbose

You want live events to be disabled for a large number of the users, but want to allow a set of users to create them.

Disable broadcast scheduling, run:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity Global -AllowBroadcastScheduling $false

Then assign those users to the Global policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName $null -Verbose

Create and assign a policy for enabling scheduling, run:

New-CSTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity EnableBroadcastSchedulingpolicy

Enable scheduling, run:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -identity EnableBroadcastSchedulingpolicy -AllowBroadcastScheduling $true

Then assign users to this policy, run:

Grant-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity {user} -PolicyName EnableBroadcastSchedulingpolicy -Verbose

For external encoder events

You must do the following to enable Live event scheduling for those users.

Step 1: Enable Microsoft Stream for users in your organization**

Microsoft Stream is available as part of eligible Office 365 subscriptions or as a standalone service. See Stream licensing overview for more details.

![Note] Microsoft Stream is not included in Business Essentials or Business Premium plans.

Learn more about how you can assign licenses to users in Office 365 so that users can access Microsoft Stream. Ensure Microsoft Stream is not blocked for the users as defined in this article.

Step 2: Ensure users have live event creation permission in Microsoft Stream**

By default, everyone in the company can create content in Stream, once Stream is enabled and a license is assigned to the user. Microsoft Stream administrator can restrict employees for creating content in Stream. The users who are in this restricted list will not be able to record meetings.

Step 3: Ensure live event organizers have consented to the company policy set by Stream admin**

If a Microsoft Stream administrator has set up a company guidelines policy and requires employees to accept this policy before saving content, then users must do so before creating a live event (with External Encoder production) in Microsoft Teams. Before you rollout the live events feature in the organization, make sure users who will be creating these live events have consented to the policy.

Step 4: Set up eCDN provider for live events in Microsoft Teams

Playback of live event videos uses adaptive bitrate streaming (ABR) but it is a unicast stream, meaning every viewer is getting their own video stream from the internet. For live events or videos sent out to large portions of your organization, there could be a significant amount of internet bandwidth consumed by viewers. For organizations that want to reduce this internet traffic for live events, live events solutions are integrated with Microsoft's trusted video delivery partners offering software defined networks (SDNs) or enterprise content delivery networks (eCDNs). These SDN / eCDN platforms enable organizations to optimize network bandwidth without sacrificing end user viewing experiences. Our partners can help enable a more scalable and efficient video distribution across your enterprise network.

Purchase & setup your solution outside of Microsoft Teams Get expert help with scaling video delivery by leveraging Microsoft’s trusted video delivery partners. Before you can enable a video delivery provider to be used with Microsoft Teams you must purchase and setup the SDN/eCDN solution outside and separate from Microsoft Teams.

The following SDN/eCDN solutions are pre-integrated and can be setup to be used with Microsoft Stream.

  • Hive Streaming provides a simple and powerful solution for live and on-demand enterprise video distribution. Hive is a software-based solution that requires no additional hardware or bandwidth and provides a secure way to enable thousands of simultaneous video viewers without impact to your network. For customers looking to understand the impact video is having on their network prior to purchasing an SDN/eCDN solution, Hive Streaming also provides a browser-based analytics solution for Microsoft customers. Learn more

  • Kollective is a cloud-based, smart peering distribution platform that leverages your existing network infrastructure to deliver content, in many forms, (live streaming video, on-demand video, software updates, security patches, etc.) faster, more reliably and with less bandwidth. Our secure platform is trusted by the world’s largest financial institutions and with no additional hardware, setup and maintenance are easy. Learn more

  • Ramp OmniCache provides next-generation network distribution and ensures seamless delivery of video content across global WANs, helping event producers optimize network bandwidth and support successful live event broadcasts and on-demand streaming. The support for Ramp OmniCache for quick start live events is coming soon. Learn more

Note

Your chosen eCDN solution is subject to the selected 3rd party provider’s terms of service and privacy policy, which will governs your use of the eCDN provider’s solution. Your use of the eCDN provider’s solution will not be subject to the Microsoft volume licensing terms or Online Services Terms. If you do not agree to the 3rd party provider’s terms, then don't enable the eCDN solution in Microsoft Teams.

Set up an eCDN for "Quick start" live events You can configure eCDN provider for live events in Microsoft Teams using PowerShell.

Note

A single eCDN provider can be configured for your organization.

Set up a Hive eCDN provider You can use Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastConfiguration PowerShell cmdlet to configure eCDN provider. First obtain the license ID and API template URL from your Hive contact then run the following:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastConfiguration -AllowSdnProviderForBroadcastMeeting $True -SdnProviderName hive -SdnLicenseId {license ID GUID provided by Hive} -SdnApiTemplateUrl “{API template URL provided by Hive}”

Set up a Kollective eCDN provider You can use Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastConfiguration PowerShell cmdlet to configure eCDN provider. First obtain the API token and the API template URL from your Kollective contact, then run the following:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastConfiguration -AllowSdnProviderForBroadcastMeeting $True -SdnProviderName kollective -SdnApiTemplateUrl "{API template URL provided by Kollective}" -SdnApiToken {API token GUID provided by Kollective}

Set up an eCDN for "External encoder" live events

If you plan to create live events that use external encoders, you will need to configure your eCDN provider with Microsoft Stream as well.

Configure live events

This is the link that will be shown to the live event attendees.

In Windows PowerShell, run the following:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastConfiguration -SupportURL “{your URL}” 

Configure attendee visibility options

This allows live event organizers to create events with appropriate attendee visibility.

Values Behavior
Everyone The user has an option to create live events with the following attendee visibility: Public, Everyone in company, and Specific people.
EveryoneInCompany The user has an option to create live events with the following attendee visibility: Everyone in company and Specific people. The user cannot create live events that can be attended by anonymous users.
InvitedUsers The user can only create live events that are limited to specific people as entered by the event organizer. The user cannot create live events with Public and Everyone in company authentication.

Use the setting BroadcastAttendeeVisibility in TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy in PowerShell to control whether the users can schedule broadcast events that can be watched by anonymous attendees.

Unless you have assigned a custom policy to the users, the users get Global policy, which has default set to EveryoneInCompany.

In Windows PowerShell, run the following to allow users to create anonymous events in the global policy:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity Global -BroadcastAttendeeVisibility Everyone  

Configure recording options

Note

This option is applicable to events that use the Quick start production method only.

This allows admins to control whether the live events are always recorded, never recorded, or whether the event organizer can decide to record the event or not.

Values Behavior
Always enabled The live events organized by this user are always recorded. The user doesn’t have an option to override. If the live event is recorded, the event team members are able to download the recording after the event, and the attendees can watch the event after the event is over.
AlwaysDisabled The live events organized by this user are never recorded. The user doesn’t have an option to override. If the live event is recorded, no recording is created for the event team members, and the attendees cannot watch the event after it is over.
UserOverride User can decide whether the live event is recorded so that a recording file can be created for the event team members, and attendees can watch the event after the event is over.

Use the setting BroadcastRecordingMode in TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy in PowerShell to control recording options of the live events created by the live event organizer.

In Windows PowerShell, run the following cmdlet to update recording mode in the global policy:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity Global -BroadcastRecordingMode AlwaysDisabled 

Configure real-time transcription and translation in Teams live events (coming soon)

Note

This option is applicable to events that use the Quick start production method only.

This allows live event organizers to turn on real-time captions and translation for the live event attendees.

Use the setting AllowBroadcastTranscription in TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy in PowerShell to control whether the live event attendees will be able to see transcription and translation. You can learn more about managing TeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy with Office 365 PowerShell here.

Unless you have assigned a custom policy to the users, the users get Global policy, which has transcription and translation disabled by default.

In Windows PowerShell, run the following cmdlet to turn transcription and translation on for event attendees in the global policy:

Set-CsTeamsMeetingBroadcastPolicy -Identity Global -AllowBroadcastTranscription $true 

Administrative tools

Although Microsoft directly controls all Office 365 Online data centers and is responsible for overall system performance, it can control only a portion of the elements that combine to provide the total experience for Office 365 users. Organizations themselves are responsible for the network connections to the data centers, the customer’s wide area network (WAN), and the customer's local area networks (LANs). Additionally, they are in charge of user devices and their configuration. They are also responsible for maintaining the required licensing per user for any desired feature, including, but not limited to, the ability to manage these features, for as long as the user needs access to the feature.

Customers can use the following tools to manage a variety of Teams live events related tasks.

Want to know more about Windows PowerShell?

When it comes to Windows PowerShell, it's all about managing users and what users are allowed or not allowed to do. With Windows PowerShell, you can manage Office 365 and Skype for Business Online using a single point of administration that can simplify your daily work when you have multiple tasks to do. To get started with Windows PowerShell, see these topics:

Windows PowerShell has many advantages in speed, simplicity, and productivity over only using the Office 365 admin center such as when you are making setting changes for many users at one time. Learn about these advantages in the following topics: