Microsoft launches new chat-based workspace in Office 365

Sean Dudley
Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley on 03 November 2016
Microsoft launches new chat-based workspace in Office 365

Microsoft has unveiled a new chat-based workspace that will further enhance capabilities within the Office 365 platform.

Microsoft Teams has been released with the aim of bringing ‘together people, conversations, content and the tools teams need to collaborate’.

“At Microsoft we aim to empower every person and organisation with the technology to be more productive as individuals and in groups,” said Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft. “Office 365 is the broadest toolkit and platform for creation, communication and collaboration. Microsoft Teams adds a new experience to Office 365 as the chat-based workspace designed to empower the art of teams.”

Microsoft Teams provides threaded chats and allows all users to stay engaged with tea conversations. Chats can be carried out involving all team participants, while private chats can also be held.

The tool brings together the full capabilities of the Office 365 offering. Users can begin voice and video meetings within Microsoft Teams, and can work with Microsoft Office documents directly within the workspace.

Microsoft Teams is built on the Office 365 liGroups cross-application membership service, making it is easy for users to jump from one collaboration tool to another.

Team members can create channels to organise conversational topics and customise these using a feature called Tabs. This provides easy access to used documents and applications, and can be created for Office 365 services like OneNote, SharePoint and Planner, or third-party solutions.

A new Microsoft Teams Developer Preview has also been released. This allows developers to start building integrations with Microsoft teams straight away.

The new tool also benefits from the security and compliance capabilities provided by the Microsoft Cloud, as it forms part of Office 365. Data is encrypted at all time, and multifactor authentication provides enhanced identity protection.

“We’ve designed Office 365 to meet the unique needs of every group, with purpose-built applications — like Outlook, SharePoint and Yammer — that all naturally work together,” said Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president of Office. “And now with Microsoft Teams, Office 365 accommodates all workstyles.”

The preview of Microsoft Teams is now available to Office 365 commercial customers with Office 365 Enterprise or Business plans, and is available in 181 countries and 18 languages.

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