A big update in functionality, you can now route/assign your own PSTN Carrier numbers to Cloud Auto Attendant and Call Queues. Previously you would need to assign new service numbers from Microsoft or port your numbers into Microsoft as service numbers on their cloud service.
Direct Routing can be used to assign a PSTN number via SBC to Auto Attendant and Call Queues (as of today Direct Routing with AA/CQ support Teams users only). In public preview, you can assign OPCH and CCE number to Cloud Auto Attendant and Call Queues.
This update involved moving to a new CQ and AA model where each call queue or auto attendant is required to have an associated resource account. A resource account is also known as a disabled user object in Azure Active Directory and can be used to represent resources in general. Right now, routing your own numbers means you have an Enterprise E1 or E3 licenses and Phone System license assigned to the resource account.
Microsoft is working on an appropriate licensing model for applications such as Cloud auto attendants and call queues, for now, you need to use the user-licensing model. So be aware of those costs and ensure you have enough licences. We have been assured this is not a plan from Microsoft to monetize the applications. Due to the high demand for supporting hybrid numbers, multi-numbers, and all the benefits of the service upgrade Microsoft had made the decision to not block these capabilities behind the app cost-free license model.
Existing AA & CQ’s created under the old model will be migrated to the new version without a need to license them. You can no longer use the legacy portal to create new auto attendants and call queues. They will now be created and managed through the Teams admin center.
Other recent improvements:
- You can assign Multiple numbers to an auto attendant or call queue
- Round Robin routing option in call queues
- You can now create auto attendants and call queues in Teams Admin Portal
- Transfer out to PSTN from auto attendant and call queues
- Extension dialing from auto attendant
- Voicemail shared mailbox for auto attendant and call queues
Randy Chapman has done a couple of great deep dive blogs on this here: