Free kick for Teams as Microsoft tries to reduce Slack

Ruben Fields
July 13, 2018

Integrated, real-time content creation with Office Online apps, including built-in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. In a clear attempt to one-up Slack, Microsoft's Teams is actually surprisingly robust.

The free version of Teams also includes unlimited chat messages, built-in audio and video calling for individuals and groups as well as 10GB of team file storage plus 2GB of personal storage per user.

Unlimited app integrations with 140+ business apps to choose from-including Adobe, Evernote, and Trello.

Point is, Microsoft's offering looks like something a small business could use for much longer before needing to upgrade to a paid plan.

Ability to communicate and collaborate with anyone inside or outside your organization, backed by Microsoft's secure, global infrastructure. You can only search the last 10,000 messages, which could be insufficient after a few years or with a larger team.

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By comparison, the free version of Slack is limited to 10 app integrations, 5GB of file storage and doesn't permit guest access. "Teams in Microsoft 365 includes everything in the free version plus additional storage, enterprise security, and compliance, and it can be used for your whole organization, regardless of size", Markezich emphasized. The habit-changing tips are powered by MyAnalytics, which has the capability to suggest that users take some time to themselves, or flag that someone is emailing a coworker after hours, in hopes of improving work/life balance, according to the release. Office 365 will use facial detection to automatically detect when particular people are talking, allowing you to jump straight to their portions of the event.

Microsoft also is announcing officially today that its Microsoft Whiteboard app is now generally available for Windows 10.

Closed captions to make the event more accessible to all.

Offering a free version will be an easier way for companies interested in the service to try it out, and could serve as a gateway for more businesses to sign up for the full 365 suite.

What's not included in the free version of Microsoft Teams, but is part of the paid version? Slack has offered a free version since it first arrived on the scene, and looking at Slack's dominance today, it seems like it was a good move.

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