Microsoft Debuts 'Teams' Chat-Based Workspace and Slack Competitor

by

Microsoft today debuted its latest product, Microsoft Teams, which is a chat-based workspace designed for Office 365 users.

Designed to compete with chat platforms like Slack and HipChat, Microsoft Teams provides a chat interface that integrates with Office 365 apps and services and other third-party services like Zendesk, Asana, Hootsuite, and Intercom.

microsoftteams
According to Microsoft, Teams is designed to provide a "modern conversation experience" in the workplace. It supports both persistent and threaded chats, along with public and private conversations. Skype integration allows teams to quickly initiate voice and video conferences, and each digital workspace can be highly customized with emoji, stickers, GIFs, extensions, open APIs, and more.

At Microsoft, we are deeply committed to the mission of helping people and organizations achieve more--and reinventing productivity for the cloud and mobile world is core to our ambition. We built Microsoft Teams because we see both tremendous opportunity and tremendous change in how people and teams get work done.

Teams are now more agile and organizational structures more flat to keep communications and information flowing. With Microsoft Teams, we aspire to create a more open, digital environment that makes work visible, integrated and accessible--across the team--so everyone can stay in the know.

Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, OneNote, Planner, Power BI, and Delve are built into Microsoft Teams, and it supports Microsoft's cross-application membership program, Office 365 Groups, so people can easily move from conversations to collaborating on documents.

Microsoft Teams is designed for Microsoft's enterprise customers, and it includes enterprise-level security with two-factor authentication, single sign on through Active Directory, and data encryption. Teams is available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and the web.

Ahead of Microsoft's announcement, competing chat platform Slack took out a full page ad in the New York Times welcoming Microsoft to the chat space, offering some "friendly advice," and signaling that it's worried about competition from Microsoft.

In the piece that ends with a warning that "Slack is here to stay," Slack says an open platform, love, and thoughtfulness and craftsmanship are essential to a successful communication product.

One final point: Slack is here to stay. We are where work happens for millions of people around the world.

So welcome, Microsoft, to the revolution. We're glad you're going to be helping us define this new product category. We admire many of your achievements and know you'll be a worthy competitor. We're sure you're going to come up with a couple of new ideas on your own too. And we'll be right there, ready.

A preview of Microsoft Teams is available in 181 countries and 18 languages starting today for Office 365 enterprise customers (Business Essentials, Business Premium, El, E3, and E5). It will officially launch early next year.

Top Rated Comments

David_Howard Avatar
53 months ago

Source?

What Soupcan said is a crock (see what I did there?).

It is all encrypted and Microsoft cannot read it.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pat500000 Avatar
53 months ago
Meanwhile, other companies have similar features without requiring subscription.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
samden Avatar
53 months ago

Microsoft has so much money it doesn't make sense to buy out the better product so they just keep making multiple versions of Skype. +1 idiots

Was thinking this myself. Awesome, a new chat platform that Micro$oft will forget about and leave to rot just like Skype for Business and Yammer.

What really sucks is nothing integrates with AD as well as M$ products and this prevents a lot of IT departments from using anything else.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macduke Avatar
53 months ago
Anything is better than Lync.

ANYTHING.

Please send help. We still use Lync at work!
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AFPoster Avatar
53 months ago
Microsoft has so much money it doesn't make sense to buy out the better product so they just keep making multiple versions of Skype. +1 idiots
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sudo1996 Avatar
53 months ago

What Soupcan said is a crock (see what I did there?).

It is all encrypted and Microsoft cannot read it.

Maybe they won't read it, but there's no guarantee that they can't. Same with Slack.
[doublepost=1478118073][/doublepost]I use Slack for work, and I don't like it. You'd think a simple messaging application inspired by IRC would be 100% problem-free by now, but it still has so many performance issues and user interface quirks. The worst one is that the iOS app (maybe others too) can't receive message notifications from more than one team at once, so I basically can only use Slack with one team. WTF.

Also, I'd really prefer that something with an open protocol be the standard, even if the server is run by one company. I think XMPP was great until everyone made a mess of it.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

0 Deals Hero

Black Friday 2020: Best Apple Deals to Plan For

Saturday November 21, 2020 10:00 am PST by
In the lead-up to Black Friday next week, we've been putting a spotlight on the best deals coming from various retailers like Best Buy and Walmart. In an effort to further prepare our readers for the best Black Friday deals, we're breaking down what we think should be on your radar for Black Friday in 2020. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a...
m1 mac mini vignette

Apple Lists M1-Based Mac Mini Logic Boards With 10 Gigabit Ethernet in Internal Parts Ordering System

Friday November 20, 2020 9:32 am PST by
While the new Mac mini with the M1 chip is only available with Gigabit Ethernet, Apple has listed multiple M1-based Mac mini logic boards with 10 Gigabit Ethernet in an internal parts list for Apple Authorized Service Providers. For every Mac mini logic board with Gigabit Ethernet in the parts list, obtained by MacRumors, there is a corresponding logic board with 10 Gigabit Ethernet:...
new m1 chip

Craig Federighi: Native Windows on M1 Macs is 'Really up to Microsoft'

Friday November 20, 2020 11:57 am PST by
Following the release of the M1 Macs Apple executives have been doing interviews with a range of publications, and today, Ars Technica published another interview with software engineering chief Craig Federighi, hardware technologies lead Johny Srouji, and marketing VP Greg Joswiak. Much of the interview focuses on topics that the three have already covered in prior discussions, but there is ...
14

Apple Releases iOS 14.2.1 With Fix for Text Message Bug and iPhone 12 Mini Lock Screen Issues

Thursday November 19, 2020 10:16 am PST by
Apple today released iOS 14.2.1, a bug fix update that comes two weeks after the launch of iOS 14.2 and is available for Apple's new iPhone 12 models. The iOS 14.2.1 update can be downloaded for free and it is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to Settings > General > Software Update. According to Apple's release notes, iOS...
Walmart November Deals Hero

Black Friday Spotlight: Walmart Will Have AirPods Pro Down to Lowest Price of $169, and More Apple Deals

Thursday November 19, 2020 8:05 am PST by
We've been tracking early Black Friday deals in our dedicated Black Friday Roundup, and in an effort to prepare our readers for the big shopping event we're highlighting sales store-by-store in the lead-up to November 27. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Walmart. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. Next ...
apple leather sleeve

Leather Sleeve for iPhone 12 Models Now Available From Apple

Friday November 20, 2020 12:16 pm PST by
Apple today began selling the Leather Sleeve for the new iPhone 12 models, with the accessory having first been announced alongside the updated iPhones in October. Priced at $129, the Leather Sleeve is not a case and is designed to be removed when the iPhone is in use. It features a cutout at the front that displays the time, and it comes with a matching leather strap. According to Apple, it ...
iOS14AntitrackFacebookSadfeature

Apple Confirms Commitment to App Tracking Transparency in Letter Condemning Facebook's Data Collection [Updated]

Thursday November 19, 2020 11:58 am PST by
Apple in iOS 14 is planning to introduce a new App Tracking Transparency feature that will let users know when companies want to track them across apps and website. Following outcry from developers like Facebook and ad networks unprepared for the change, Apple delayed the implementation of the anti-tracking functionality until early 2021. Eight civil society organizations recently sent a...
maxresdefault

CrossOver Allows x86 Windows Apps to Run on Apple M1 Macs

Wednesday November 18, 2020 6:07 pm PST by
Codeweavers posted a blog post and video tonight showing off CrossOver running on an Apple M1 MacBook Air. This video shows Team Fortress 2 running on a new M1 MacBook Air: CrossOver is software (based on Wine Project) that runs Microsoft Windows apps on the Mac by translating Windows APIs into their Mac equivalents. The Codeweavers team was able to run the current version of CrossOver on...
macbookpro13large

Apple Offers Instructions on What to Do if macOS Big Sur Causes Installation Errors on 2013 and 2014 MacBook Pro

Thursday November 19, 2020 6:12 pm PST by
Following the release of macOS Big Sur last week, a number of 2013 and 2014 MacBook Pro owners found that the update bricked their machines. Affected users saw their Macs get stuck displaying a black screen after attempting to install the new software. Apple has now addressed this issue in a new support document that provides instructions on what to do if macOS Big Sur can't be installed on...
128gb m1 macbook air education cropped

$799 M1 MacBook Air With 128GB Storage for Education Institutions Spotted Online

Friday November 20, 2020 5:15 am PST by
A new configuration of the M1 MacBook Air with 128GB of storage and a lower $799 price has today been spotted on Apple's U.S. Education Institution Hardware and Software Price List. The M1 MacBook Air is only available with 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, or 2TB of storage. There is currently no 128GB configuration on the Apple Store. However, Reddit user "u/dduci97" noticed that Apple has listed...