Use a screen reader to search for a conversation, person, or file in Microsoft Teams

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This article is for people who use a screen reader program with the Office products and is part of the Office Accessibility content set. For more general help, see Office Support home.

Use a keyboard and JAWS screen reader, to search for conversations, persons, and files in the Microsoft Teams team collaboration app for Windows. In Microsoft Teams, the whole team can work together in real time using team channels for conversations, file sharing, and more.

Notes: 

Search for a conversation, person, or file

You can quickly search for a message, contact, or file. The search results (if available) are displayed in separate main tabs and sub-tabs:

  • Messages

    • All

    • This team

    • This channel

  • People

  • Files

    • All

    • This team

  1. To go to the Search box, press Alt+E.

  2. Type your search words and press Enter. You hear the number of matches and which results tab or sub-tab is selected.

    • To navigate between tabs or sub-tabs, press the Left or Right arrow keys.

    • To select a tab or sub-tab, press Enter.

    • To navigate from a sub-tab or results list to a main tab, press Shift+Tab.

  3. To navigate to the search results list, press Tab until you hear the first result.

  4. To move in the search results list, press the Up or Down arrow key. JAWS announces the message, person, or file details.

  5. To explore a search result further, do the following:

    • On a Messages tab search result, press Enter. The message thread in which you can find the search result appears in the main view.

    • On a People tab search result, press Enter. The person's page appears in the main view.

    • On a Files tab search result, press Enter. The file opens differently depending on the file type. For example, an Office file opens in the Microsoft Teams File Viewer and a PNG graphic file opens in the default browser.

Tip: To filter the search results, press Tab until you hear "Filter button, not checked," and then press Enter. To navigate the Filter dialog, press Tab or Shift+Tab. To expand an options list, press Spacebar. To select, press Enter, and then press Tab until you hear: "Filter button."

See also

Use a screen reader to privately message or chat in Microsoft Teams

Use a screen reader to find and reply to alerts in Microsoft Teams

Keyboard shortcuts for Microsoft Teams

Basic tasks when using a screen reader with Microsoft Teams

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Office 365

Learn how to navigate Microsoft Teams using accessibility features

Use your keyboard and VoiceOver, the built-in Mac OS screen reader, to search for messages, persons, and files in the Microsoft Teams on Mac team collaboration app. The search results are distributed onto the Messages, People, and Files tabs and sub-tabs, if applicable.

Notes: 

Use a screen reader to search for a conversation, person, or file

  1. To go to the Search box, press Option+E.

  2. Type your search words and press Enter.

    You hear the number of matches, and the name of the currently selected tab or sub-tab.

  3. To navigate between the tabs or sub-tabs, press the Left or Right arrow keys. To select a tab, press Enter.

    To navigate back up to a main tab from a sub-tab, press Shift+Tab.

  4. To navigate to the list of search results, press Tab until you hear the first result.

  5. To move in the search results list, press the Right or Left arrow key. VoiceOver announces the message, person, or file details as you reach them.

    Tip: To filter the search results, press Tab until you hear: "Filter, button," and then press Enter. To navigate the fields in the dialog that opens, press Tab or Shift+Tab. To expand a list for selecting an option, press Spacebar. To select an option, press Enter. When you're done, press Tab until VoiceOver announces: "Filter button." Press Control+Option+Spacebar to select the button and apply the filtering criteria.

  6. To further explore an individual search result:

    • On the Messages tab, press Enter on a search result to open the conversation containing the search result in the main view.

    • On the People tab, press Enter on a search result to open the person's page in the main view.

    • On the Files tab, press Enter to open the file. Depending on the file, it can open, for example, in the Microsoft Teams File Viewer or in the default browser.

See also

Use a screen reader to privately message or chat in Microsoft Teams

Use a screen reader to find and reply to alerts in Microsoft Teams

Keyboard shortcuts for Microsoft Teams

Basic tasks when using a screen reader with Microsoft Teams

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Office 365

Learn how to navigate Microsoft Teams using accessibility features

Use VoiceOver, the built-in iOS screen reader, to search for conversations, persons, and files in the Microsoft Teams for iOS team collaboration app. In Microsoft Teams for iOS, the whole team can work together in real time using team channels for conversations, file sharing, and more.

Notes: 

  • New Office 365 features are released gradually to Office 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you could get new features faster, visit When do I get the newest features in Office 2016 for Office 365?.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in iOS screen reader, VoiceOver. To learn more about using VoiceOver, visit Apple accessibility.

  • This topic assumes that you are using an iPhone. Some navigation and gestures might be different for an iPad.

Use a screen reader to search for a conversation, person, or file

  1. Swipe left until you hear "Search button," and then double-tap the screen. You hear: "Search field, is editing."

  2. Swipe right until you hear the first character on the on-screen keyboard.

  3. To type your search words, slide one finger on the keyboard until you hear the character you want, and then double-tap the screen. The character is added in the Search field.

    Note: To search for files, type the word "file" in the Search field.

  4. The search starts automatically as you type. Search results are displayed on two tabs: Messages and People.

  5. To check the search results on the Messages tab, which is displayed at the top, swipe right until you hear the first result. VoiceOver reads the contents and details of the message. To open the whole conversation, double-tap the screen.

    The Messages tab lists the search results for files as well.

  6. To check the search results on the People tab, swipe left or right until you hear "People, unselected," and then double-tap the screen. You hear: People, selected." Swipe right until you hear the first result.

    VoiceOver reads the contact name, availability status, and email address. To go to the contact details, double-tap the screen.

See also

Use a screen reader to privately message or chat in Microsoft Teams

Basic tasks when using a screen reader with Microsoft Teams

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Office 365

Learn how to navigate Microsoft Teams using accessible features

Use TalkBack, the built-in Android screen reader, to search for conversations, persons, and files in the Microsoft Teams for Android team collaboration app. In Microsoft Teams for Android, the whole team can work together in real time using team channels for conversations, file sharing, and more.

Notes: 

  • New Office 365 features are released gradually to Office 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you could get new features faster, visit When do I get the newest features in Office 2016 for Office 365?.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in Android screen reader, TalkBack. To learn more about using TalkBack, go to Android accessibility.

  • This topic assumes you are using this app with an Android phone. Some navigation and gestures might be different for an Android tablet.

Search for a conversation, person, or file

  1. Swipe right until you hear "Search button," and then double-tap the screen. You hear: "Search open, enter your query."

  2. Use the on-screen keyboard to type your search word.

    Note: To search for files, type the word "file" in the Search field.

  3. The search starts automatically as you type. Search results are displayed on two tabs: Messages and People.

  4. To check the search results on the Messages tab, swipe right until you hear the first result. If the first result is not the one you seek, keep swiping right. To open the whole conversation, double-tap the screen.

    Note: The Messages tab also lists the search results for files.

  5. To check the search results on the People tab, after typing your search word, swipe right until you hear "People tab, 2 of 2, not selected," and then double-tap the screen. You hear: "People tab, 2 of 2, selected."

  6. Swipe right until you hear the first result. If the first result is not the one you seek, keep swiping right. To go to the contact details, double-tap the screen.

  7. To close the search and return to the view you were in, swipe down-then-left twice.

See also

Use a screen reader to privately message or chat in Microsoft Teams

Basic tasks when using a screen reader with Microsoft Teams

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Office 365

Learn how to navigate Microsoft Teams using accessible features

Use your keyboard and Narrator, the built-in Windows OS screen reader, to search for conversations, persons, and files in the Microsoft Teams on the web team collaboration app for Windows. In Microsoft Teams on the web, the whole team can work together in real time using team channels for conversations, file sharing, and more.

Notes: 

  • New Office 365 features are released gradually to Office 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you could get new features faster, visit When do I get the newest features in Office 2016 for Office 365?.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in Windows screen reader, Narrator. To learn more about using Narrator, go to Get started with Narrator.

  • This topic assumes you are using this app with a PC. Some navigation and gestures might be different for a Windows phone or tablet.

  • When you use Microsoft Teams on the web, we recommend that you use Microsoft Edge as your web browser. Because Microsoft Teams on the web runs in your web browser, the keyboard shortcuts are different from those in the desktop program. For example, you’ll use Ctrl+F6 instead of F6 for jumping in and out of the commands. Also, common shortcuts like F1 (Help) and Ctrl+O (Open) apply to the web browser – not Microsoft Teams on the web.

Search for a conversation, person, or file

You can quickly search for a message, contact, or file. The search results (if available) are displayed in separate tabs:

  • Messages

  • People

  • Files

Note: Sometimes the search result tabs are further organized into sub-tabs. These include All, This team, and This channel.

  1. To go to the Search box, press Alt+E.

  2. Type your search words and press Enter. Narrator tells you what kind of results were found, or if no results were found. If there were results, the focus moves to the first results tab or sub-tab.

    • To navigate between tabs or sub-tabs, press the Left or Right arrow keys.

    • To select a tab or sub-tab, press Enter.

    • To navigate from a sub-tab or results list to a main tab, press Shift+Tab.

  3. To navigate to the search results list, press Tab until you hear the first result.

  4. To move in the search results list, press the Up or Down arrow key. Narrator announces the message, person, or file details.

  5. To explore a search result further, do the following:

    • On a Messages tab search result, press Enter. The message thread in which you can find the search result appears in the main view.

    • On a People tab search result, press Enter. The person's page appears in the main view.

    • On a Files tab search result, press Enter. The file opens differently depending on the file type.

Tip: To filter the search results, press Tab until you hear "Filter button," and then press Enter. To navigate the Filter dialog, press Tab or Shift+Tab. To expand an options list, press Spacebar. To select, press Enter, and then press Tab until you hear: "Filter button."

See more

Use a screen reader to privately message or chat in Microsoft Teams

Use a screen reader to find and reply to alerts in Microsoft Teams

Basic tasks when using a screen reader with Microsoft Teams

Learn how to navigate Microsoft Teams using accessible features

Technical support for customers with disabilities

Microsoft wants to provide the best possible experience for all our customers. If you have a disability or questions related to accessibility, please contact the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk for technical assistance. The Disability Answer Desk support team is trained in using many popular assistive technologies and can offer assistance in English, Spanish, French, and American Sign Language. Please go to the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk site to find out the contact details for your region.

If you are a government, commercial, or enterprise user, please contact the enterprise Disability Answer Desk.

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