Microsoft Teams can now cut out background noise with AI

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With more people working and studying from home than ever, background noise can be a serious issue on calls and within meetings. Microsoft Teams has a new AI-based noise suppression feature that can cut out background noise. Because the feature uses AI, it can remove more complicated background noise than traditional noise suppression algorithms. Microsoft explains the new feature in a recent techcommunity post.

At the moment, the noise suppression feature is only available on the desktop client of Teams. To use it, you select “High” in the “Noise suppression” drop-down menu before you enter a call or meeting.

The feature analyzes people’s individual audio feeds and uses neural networks to filter out noise. Microsoft highlights that traditional noise suppression algorithms can only remove simple stationary noise like fans. The Teams AI noise suppression feature can remove non-stationary noises, like keyboards and food wrappers.

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“The AI-based noise suppression relies on machine learning (ML) to learn the difference between clean speech and noise,” Microsoft explains in its blog post.

Microsoft created a dataset with approximately 760 hours of clean speech data and 180 hours of noise data to help create this feature. The company also used more than 3,000 real room environments and more than 115,000 synthetically created rooms.

The AI noise suppression feature works in real time, so you shouldn’t experience any lag when using it in normal conversation.

While the feature is currently limited to PCs using the desktop client, Microsoft is working on bringing the feature to Mac and mobile platforms.

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