Published On: Tue, Mar 14th, 2017

Teams, Microsoft’s Slack rival, opens to all Office 365 users


After unveiling a limited preview of Teams in Nov final year, Microsoft is now rolling out a partnership and communication platform, positioned as a opposition to Slack, some-more widely: Teams is now available, and free, for all 85 million monthly active users of Office 365, Microsoft’s apartment of cloud services and apps as a web app and local apps for Windows, iOS and Android.

Along with it, a association is announcing some 150 integrations with third-party services like Asana, Zendesk and Hootsuite, alongside a ability to discuss (with other humans or with bots), confidence services, customization options and more.

(No word on when and either Teams would enhance outward a Office 365 ecosystem: “We’ve had some discussions though right now sojourn focused on a outrageous user base,” remarkable Mira Lane, Microsoft Teams’ UX lead.)

The wider launch comes in a arise of some reasonable success so far. Microsoft said the Teams preview has had some 50,000 organizations pointer adult and try out a service.

That figure includes both companies that have attempted it as good as those who have stayed on to turn active users, and Microsoft would usually tell me that many stay on, with a series of people per association trimming from tiny groups to organizations with hundreds of users. (Notable patron wins, it said, include Accenture, Alaska Airlines, Conoco Phillips, Deloitte, Expedia, J.B. Hunt, J. Walter Thompson, Hendrick Motorsports, Trek Bicycle and Three UK.)

For a new app that is entrance to a marketplace after a duration arise of Slack, as good as other competing services like Workplace from Facebook and Hipchat from Atlassian, some competence disagree that Teams and Microsoft are late to a game.

In a favor, Microsoft is banking on a low-friction aspect of a service: Those being targeted are already regulating Microsoft apps like Excel, Word, PowerPoint, OneNote, SharePoint and Power BI, so there will be laxity and convenience. And it’s giveaway to try out.

As we remarkable when Microsoft debuted a use in November, Teams throws a lot during a user from a start. If you’ve ever used something like Word or Excel, we know that this is a really Microsoft approach.

The simple interface follows a lot of what we competence already know for workplace partnership products, that are mostly formed around a left rail that lists contention groups, and a categorical tide to a right that charts conversations.

Within that, Microsoft takes we into a flattering outrageous range of opposite options that daub into a many other products. These embody approach chats, a choice to reason audio and video calls, a ability to call in spreadsheets and other documents, run some analytics and more, along with spaces for “evergreen” calm as good as others for some-more fast changing data.

On tip of this, Microsoft has built a chatbot horizon that primarily is dedicated to assisting we use Teams better, though over time will embody integrations built by developers to move in a accumulation of other services too, identical to Slack, Messenger and a series of other discuss services.

This seems to be intentional, not random or a pointer of clutter during Microsoft.

“The change to modern operative styles that are open and pure by default are partial of a core truth of one distance does not fit all,” Lane pronounced in an interview. “Organizations are opposite in how they do business and collaborate. Some will use mixed tools, for instance Yammer for a CEO to pronounce to a whole organization, though for some-more parsimonious partnership they’ll use Microsoft Teams. We consider it’s fine to be fluid.”

The bizarre change that Microsoft is perplexing to strike here is between giving we too most to do, too many options; though also a slow doubt of either all this will be adequate to lean users to a service.

This is not only an emanate when deliberation Microsoft Teams compared to products from opposite companies, though when comparing it to Microsoft itself, that already has a series of applications where users can promulgate and combine with any other, including Yammer, Skype and more.

So far, a knowledge has been that while some services have really gained traction (Slack now has some-more than 5 million daily active users, and 1.5 million paid accounts), given that there are millions more businesses in a world, there is still a lot to play for, and a lot to win. “We’re saying people kicking a tires on all products and looking for something some-more craving grade,” Lane noted.

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