Microsoft Teams: New features for GitHub users will make life easier for developers

GitHub refines its app for developer collaboration on Microsoft Teams.

The developer-focused GitHub app for Microsoft Teams is still in public preview, but it's gained new personalization features, scheduled reminders, subscriptions and comment threading. 

GitHub, the Microsoft-owned developer site for sharing code, released its app for Microsoft Teams collaboration in public preview in September. The GitHub app allows developers to continue working on collaboration projects without leaving Teams.     

Now Microsoft has announced a few new features for the GitHub app for Teams, which gave it an answer to the GitHub app for now Salesforce-owned Slack

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The GitHub app for Teams now lets developers personalize the experience by letting them subscribe to repositories and receive notifications for issues, pull requests (PRs), and new commits. The GitHub for Teams app has also gained scheduled reminders for pending pull requests. This allows for periodic reminders about upcoming pull requests within a channel or personal chat. 

"Scheduled reminders ensure your teammates are unblocking your workflows by providing reviews on your pull request. This will have an impact on business metrics like time-to-release for features or bug fixes," Microsoft notes. 

The new subscriptions features allows users to customize notifications for pull requests and issues. Developers can also use filters to create subscriptions and avoid irrelevant updates. 

Threading comments is also now available. The feature groups pull requests and issues under a primary card as replies within Teams.

"The parent card always shows the latest status of the pull request/issue along with other meta-data like description, assignees, reviewers, labels, and checks," Microsoft explains.  

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Finally, the GitHub app now allows users to create an issue, close an issue, reopen and issue, as well as comment on an issue and pull requests.  

GitHub also recently released new push notifications for its mobile apps for iOS and Android. With an eye on developers who are working from home during the pandemic, the new notifications aim to give them more control to "keep work separate from life."

The app delivers push notifications when the developer is directly mentioned, as well as when they've been asked to review a pull request, assigned a task, or request to approve new code for a protected environment. 

However, users won't get team mentions and team review requests in these new notifications. There are also settings available to let users choose to prioritize issues worthy of push notifications.