Apr 21, 2018 | Updated: 09:54 AM EDT

Microsoft Teams: Rolling Out Free For Microsoft's Commercial Office 365 Customers

Mar 16, 2017 12:10 PM EDT

This week, Microsoft announced the global availability of the new chat-based workspace in Office 365, Microsoft Teams. It is company's powerful answer for Slack for the large enterprises and small businesses.

According to MSPowerUser, Microsoft Teams supports threaded and persistent chats to keep everyone engaged. Also, Skype is deeply integrated, so that teams can participate in voice and video conferences. It also supports emojis, stickers, GIFs and custom memes.

Microsoft already announced the preview in November 2016 and more than 50,000 organizations have started using Microsoft Teams, including Alaska Airlines, Cerner Corporation, ConocoPhillips, Deloitte, Expedia, J.B. Hunt, J. Walter Thompson, Hendrick Motorsports, Sage, Trek Bicycle and Three UK.

There is no extra cost for Microsoft's commercial Office 365 customer to turn on Microsoft Teams. It competes with Slack where members of an organization can create or join channels of different projects or divisions within the company. Last week, Google split Hangouts into two services, one is a video chat service that called Hangouts Meet and another is a team-oriented messaging service that called Hangouts Chat. Amazon also launched Amazon Chime, a managed service where organizations can conduct frustration-free online meetings.

As written in USA Today, Microsoft claims more than 85 million monthly Office 365 users. Microsoft Teams is being made available in 181 markets and 19 languages. Since the preview launch of Teams, more than 100 new features have been added.

The key features of Microsoft Teams are as follow. All user's content, tools, people, and conversations are available in the team workspace. There is a built-in access to SharePoint, OneNote, and Skype for Business. The user can work on documents right in the app and can add tabs to provide quick access to frequently used documents and cloud services.

Microsoft Teams lets user pull in Connectors for updates from third-party tools and services and provides support for Broad compliance standards. There is an email integration and bot support and Microsoft also improved security. Teams is an intelligent, free and the kind of software that puts pressure on its competitors.

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