Overview of optional connected experiences in Microsoft Teams

If you have a work or school account, your organization's admin may have provided you with the ability to use one or more cloud-backed services (also referred to as optional connected experiences) while using Microsoft Teams, like GIPHY and/or URL Preview service. These cloud-backed services are optional. Whether you use them is up to you. They're offered to you under terms that differ from the Microsoft Online Service Terms, as described separately for each optional service. This article lists our Teams cloud-backed services.

If your admin has given you the ability to use optional connected experiences in Teams, you can go to Settings > Privacy in Teams and choose whether you want to use optional connected experiences.


If you're an admin, you can give or restrict your users' ability to use optional connected experiences. You can do this by using the Office cloud policy service and configuring the Allow the use of additional optional connected experiences in Office policy setting. This is the same policy setting that controls whether optional connected experiences are available to your users in the Office apps (such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) that come with Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise.


GIPHY is a cloud-backed service that lets you use GIFs in your Teams chats. If you're in Teams > GIF > Search, the search terms are sent to GIPHY. These experiences, if allowed by your admin and after you choose to use them, are subject to the GIPHY Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

This is a menu showing the Giphy selection button and textbox for typing information in to retrieve a Giphy image or images.

URL Preview service

The URL Preview service automatically generates a preview snippet and attaches under the snippet the URL when a user sends a URL string. This service will make a request to the service URL as the user is typing the message. If the service URL doesn't have any schema.org data, it'll send a request to Bing search to get the data it needs to generate the preview snippet. Experiences that rely on Bing are licensed to you under the terms of the Microsoft Services Agreement and covered by the privacy statement. Any URLs you provide to the Microsoft Teams while using these services can be sent to Microsoft Bing. They are not linked to you by the Bing organization.

A screen showing a sample of a URL preview for the Microsoft home page in a text box.

The Teams app link previews service generates a preview snippet of the app's adaptive card and attaches it under the URL when a user sends a URL string that maps to the app in the Teams store. If the URLP setting is turned on, this service will make a request to the service URL as the user is typing the message to unfurl a card preview. Tenant admin and user settings for apps would be honored.

Teams device store checkout

Teams device store is in the Teams admin center and it enables discovery and purchase of Teams certified devices. To enable checkout, the Teams device store shares basic user and company information, including user email address, user GUIDs and tenant GUIDs, with UnifiedCommunications.com. This experience, if allowed by the Allow the use of additional optional connected experiences in Office policy setting, is subject to the terms of service and privacy statement of UnifiedCommunications.com.

A screenshot of a portion of the Teams device store page with Checkout options provided by UnifiedCommunications.com, a third-party company that enables device purchasing from the Teams admin center.

To learn more about Teams device store, check out: Purchase devices in the Teams device store