Microsoft Azure Bot Services provide us a managed, highly scaled platform for developing intelligent, enterprise-grade chatbots. Microsoft Azure Health Chatbot abstracted out the complex part of data validation, regulation, data privacy from the platform. It provided an opportunity for the organization to build and deploy an AI-based healthcare bot rapidly. With the power of Azure Platform, you can expand the chatbot across several channels, including Web, Desktop, integrate with Whatsapp, Microsoft Team, or any other external interface using Directline APIs. This post let us learn how to integrate with an Azure Health Chatbot with Microsoft Team Apps and distribute it across the organization.
In the previous post, we have learned how to enable a channel for Microsoft Team and connect Health Bot using Bot Id. However, that has the limitation on sharing the Id across, and people need to search for the Id. We can make these experiences better and distribute the app across organizations using the Microsoft Teams App. Having a Team app makes it is easy to discover, manageable, and easy to distribute and control using different policies. However, before starting with this post, make sure you read one of the previous posts on – Create your first AI-powered, compliant Chatbot using Azure Health Bot.
Before you move further, make sure you read the following two posts so that you have the background on building Azure Health Chatbot and the basic way to integrate with Microsoft Teams
- Create your first AI-powered, compliant Chatbot using Azure Health Bot
- How to configure Azure Health Chatbot for Microsoft Teams?
Developing Microsoft Teams Apps
Microsoft Teams allows developers to build custom applications and deploy them using SDKs. There are three key types of apps Microsoft Teams allows developers to build.
- Messaging Extension
Microsoft Teams Apps SDK provides powerful integration with different connectors and Microsoft Graphs to build an enterprise application. To start developing Teams App, We can use the following three ways.
- Microsoft Teams Extension for Visual Studio Code
- Microsoft Teams SDK for Visual Studio
- App Studio for Microsoft Teams.
To start something really quick and move the app to end user hands App Studio would be the first preference in my opinion.
App Studio for Microsoft Teams Apps
If you want to develop Microsoft Teams App, you must get started with App Studio. It makes it very easy to start building an app and integrate with Team and distribute it.
So, as a first steps, install “App Studio” in your Team.
Integrate Azure Health Chatbot with Microsoft Teams App
Once you have the “App Studio” install, you can create a Teams Apps by following the steps
Firstly, Navigate to the Manifest Editor and click on “Create a new App“. You can choose “Bot Management” as well for the Bot. But, using App, you can add other capabilities like Tabs and Extension in the future if you want.
Secondly, all the basic information including App Name, App Id, Version, etc. Once all the required information is provided, you can move to the capabilities section and select “Bots“
Bots capabilities will allows us create a new Bot for the Teams App or add an existing Bot. Click on “Set up“
Once the bot Id is configured, Bot capabilities allow you to delete or edit the configured bot. Here you can also add additional commands for your bot.
Distribute Azure Health Chatbot using Microsoft Teams Apps
Once the configuration is done, our next step would but publish this application. Move to the Finish section of the Teams App creation Steps and select “Test and Distributes.” Here you will have multiple options to test and distribute the app.
You can click on the “Install” option to install the application within Microsoft Teams for your account and test the app. Make sure you have permission to install custom apps. This needs to be set up by your administrator in the Teams Admin portal. This will allows you to install the custom application within your teams and test it out.
If you don’t have permission to install the custom app, you will get permission issues while adding the bot to your teams.
Once you are done with validation and test the app in your local, you can download the package or publish the app to the Microsoft Teams store for your organization. Once your Teams administrator approves it, the app will be available for everyone under “Build for your org.” Anyone from your organization can now download the app and start using the bot,
This blog is part of Azure Week. Check it out for more great content!
About the Author:
Abhijit is a Technology Leader, Technical Strategist, Solution Architect, Development Consultant, and Trusted Technology Advisor with 14 years of experience in the IT industry with expertise in Development, Architecting, Engineering, Consulting, and Leadership. He is a former Microsoft MVP, Code Project MVP, mentor, speaker at various technology conferences. He is the founder of The Daily .NET Tips https://dailydotnettips.com, a popular community website helping millions of developers across the globe. He is an avid technology blogger and blogs at http://abhijitjana.net.He has authored the book “Kinect for Windows SDK Programming Guide” and co-authored the book on HoloLens Enterprise Application Development – HoloLens Blueprint. You can follow him @AbhijitJana
Jana, A. (2021). Distribute Azure Health Chatbot Using Microsoft Teams Apps. Available at: https://dailydotnettips.com/distribute-azure-health-chatbot-using-microsoft-teams-apps/ [Accessed: 7th July 2021].