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Overhaul change of how Availability/Set a Status works in Webex app - make it similar to Jabber

The Status change/Availabiity in Webex app totally sucks right now and is too confusing for users..

Someone would set a Custom status to "Out for Lunch", but their Presence on their picture remains Green (which indicates they are still Active etc.) - is quite annoying

Can we bring back the ability to change availability similar to Jabber, and just add an option for user to add Custom message status?

MS Teams does it pretty perfectly and very straightforward and intuitive (attached)

  • Guest
  • Feb 18 2021
  • Future consideration
  • Guest commented
    10 Jan 10:04pm

    I agree with this completely. If I set my status to "In a meeting" then I want to set my availability to DND right there. Having to use two separate menu actions is frustrating.

  • Guest commented
    11 Mar, 2022 09:46pm

    tl;dr = separate availability and status are harder to use and less useful than Jabber's single combined status.

    • IMHO Jabber did this perfectly

      • With its one single status you easily and obviously indicate what your status is:

        • Green = available (duh :)

        • Orange = away or in a meeting

          • This indicates I'm probably not accessible

          • I like that my phone will still ring

          • I can choose to answer important calls if needed

        • Red = definitely not accessible, which is obvious to others

          • This is also a quick/easy way to stop my phone from ringing

          • I rarely use this mode because I almost always want to be able to screen my calls, but I can appreciate that some people may find it useful

      • With just three colors (statuses) even our most tech challenged uses can figure this out

      • Additionally, if you wanted to add a little more detail you could do that with custom status text. For example, if I see an orange status I know I can read the text to see if that person's on a call, out to lunch etc. However, reading the text is not required, just seeing the color is all you really need to make a basic judgement call on a person's availability.

    • Now in Webex there are two different things:

      • 1. Status = practically useless

        • Setting your availability means your available (working from home) or not available "out to lunch" or something in between.

        • It doesn't change your status color, so it's not obvious to anyone else what your availability is

          • Icons aren't clear/obvious

          • The person looking at your icon must notice all the text that goes along with your availability to determine what your availability is

          • This text (along with the icon) is not obvious, so no one will notice this and therefore I predict only a very small # of users will ever use availability

      • 2. Availability = good for letting people know you're not available and setting DND mode (sending all calls to voicemail)

        • Similar to Jabber's red mode, some people may find this useful

        • However, I think the majority of our users are like me and want an obvious "I'm not available" (orange) status while still being able to get calls

          • For example, maybe I'm not available because I'm waiting for an important call

    • Even worse, in Webex you can't manually override a meeting availability to make yourself available

      • This primarily affects Outlook meetings (if you leave a Webex meeting that is NOT in your calendar you become available immediately)

      • In both Webex and Jabber when you're in a meeting your availability (Jabber status) is updated to show you're in a meeting

      • But let's say your meeting scheduled for an hour ends early, after just 30 minutes

      • By default, you'll stay in meeting availability (Jabber status) for the entire hour

      • In Jabber you can set your status to available

      • In Webex you're stuck. You can force your availability to DND mode, but you can't set yourself as available (short of deleting the meeting off of your calendar).

    • Jabber's status is also easier to access

      • In both Webex and Jabber you can change your availability/status by clicking on your pic

      • However, Jabber (and MS Teams) also let you right click on their taskbar icon to change your status

    • In summary the Webex app's status function is useless, so you're really left with just its availability to use. Webex availability only has one state (red) that you can manually set. Jabber's three status states (red, orange, green) are obviously superior. The only improvement Webex has in this space is the ability to set a time to auto-revert your availability back to green.

    • This is one of those small things Jabber gets right and Webex gets wrong that will really annoy our users. It would be great if Webex could collapse the availability and status functions back into one status capability. That combined with the auto-revert timer would actually make this an improvement for our users. A single status/availability setting is the way every other common messaging app (MS Teams, Zoom, Jabber) works, being different with this function is NOT a good thing (it's a confusing thing). I don't look forward to trying to explain to my users how losing the ability to set an orange or green availability is a good thing…

    • Effectively and easily communicating your availability/status is a fairly important thing for a collaboration app to do. It's frustrating that Webex gets this basic feature wrong.

  • Jacques Pavlenyi commented
    29 Oct, 2021 03:37pm

    I echo this, and suggest even more. HCL Sametime (formerly IBM and Lotus) had the ability over a decade ago to identify your IP address and AUTOMATICALLY update your status and location based on your IP. You could then use it as is, save and customize it for re-use, and more. WebEx' current status update has zero IP intelligence, doesn't recognize where your computer is or if you're logged in from your computer, mobile device or a public device.

    Sametime, earlier versions of WebEx chat that Cisco acquired, and other chat services also have had the ability for a decade to automatically update when you were in an online meeting, or on the telephone (if integrated with your IP telephony system). This isn't hard. Why can't WebEx, a supposed leader in IP telephone and online collaboration, figure this out?

  • Dietmar Kuepper commented
    11 May, 2021 06:08am