Microsoft is finally releasing Teams to the general public. Since November 2020, users have been able to test a preview build, but it is only now that Microsoft has made the app available to the general public, providing them with yet another way to communicate with family and friends. However, with the official release of Teams for personal use, what will become of Skype?
Microsoft launched a preview of Teams for personal use last year to further assist people in communicating with their family & loved ones. Seven months later, Microsoft is finally ready to make it available to the general public.
Microsoft Teams Personal Features
Microsoft Teams’ latest update includes a slew of new features designed to make calls more enjoyable, convenient, and engaging.
- ‘Together mode,’ which enables participants to select a virtual environment such as a coffee shop, a living room, or a resort.
- Unlimited video and voice calling were included in this preview build.
- Addition of live emoji reactions and GIFs
- Ability to invite people to a chat room via email and phone number, SMS messaging.
- Personal dashboards.
- Shared task lists
- Group polls
- Teams users can make free one-on-one calls lasting up to 24 hours.
- Groups of up to 100 participants are permitted to make free calls, but only for up to 60 minutes.
- Support 24-hour calls with up to 300 participants for a limited time.
How to access Microsoft Team for Personal Use and switch between professional and Personal use
Teams users who wish to use it as a personal communication app will have their accounts segregated, preventing users from mixing personal and professional matters. Each account maintains files, contacts, chats, and other account information.
To switch between accounts, users simply click the profile icon at the top of the app and select the desired account.
What will happen to Skype?
Microsoft acquired Skype in 2011 for $8.5 billion. Skype had over 100 million active users at the time, with 8 million paying to use the service to make and receive voice over internet protocol calls (VoIP). Skype was the primary method for consumers to communicate with one another over the internet in 2011, with video calls accounting for 40% of all Skype usage.
Teams has essentially become another Skype in Microsoft’s software portfolio as a result of the update. While we already know that Skype for Business will be discontinued in a few months, there is no word on the future of the original consumer app. While merging the two is a likely option, Microsoft can always take a different path.
If you’d like to access Teams without installation of any Application go straight to the web application, the Teams webpage. If you want to Download Microsoft Teams Application you can download from here for a variety of operating systems, including Android, iOS, and Windows.