How to reduce noise in video calls with Teams

Video calls with other members of the faculty or to teach online classes have become popular due to periods of confinement or the hybrid class system. A communicative method with many advantages, but which also has some disadvantages, such as noise. And it is that the sounds coming from the street or from the members of the family themselves can pose a problem to achieve fluent, effective and fast communication during work or study hours.

So how do you prevent vacuum cleaner noise from creeping in during a meeting? Or that while a part of the syllabus is taught to the students, the children are not heard running around the room? Microsoft Teams has a solution to reduce noise in meetings (available in the platform’s desktop application) through a noise suppression system in two different ways: through the main Teams window or the meeting window. Next, we show you the steps to follow to activate them.

Reduce noise in Teams: levels and windows

First of all, keep in mind that Teams allows you to reduce background noise on three levels: automatic, high or low.

  • Automatic level: the platform decides the best level of noise suppression based on the local noise.
  • High level: All background sound other than voice is suppressed. In this case, keep in mind that this option is not available if the meeting is being recorded or if the subtitles are activated. It also consumes more computer resources.
  • Low level: Suppresses background noises that are not annoying, such as a computer fan or an air conditioner, for example.
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After knowing the different levels, you have to activate the desired one. This can be done from two places: the main Teams window or the meeting window.

  • From the main Teams window. Select the profile image (in the upper right part of the screen) and then click on ‘settings’. Within this category, you have to go to ‘devices’ and within it under ‘noise suppression’. In this last tab one of the mentioned levels is selected.
  • From the meeting window. It is also possible to do it at the time of the meeting. In this case, you have to select the more options icon (***), go to settings and under noise suppression mark the desired level.

Microsoft Teams meeting window

And how do you do it?

Noise suppression in Microsoft Teams has been achieved through Artificial Intelligence, which is based on automated learning (‘machine learning’) to differentiate ‘clean’ speech from noise. In this way, through different algorithms it is able to suppress noises that at first glance can even be considered as ‘little annoying’, such as typing or opening a package of cookies, but which can cloud an important meeting. This video shows some of those situations in which noise can be suppressed, while you are scrubbing in the kitchen or vacuuming, among others.

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