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Microsoft delivers enterprise chat through Office 365 and Teams

Teams is Microsoft’s latest step to put Office 365 at the heart of collaboration, cementing Office as the business workspace

Teams, the Microsoft Office 365 collaboration platform, is now available for business customers in 181 markets and 19 languages.

“In a world where information is abundant and human time and attention remain scarce, we aspire to help people and groups of people be more productive, wherever they are,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

“Office 365 is the broadest platform and universal toolkit for creation, collaboration and communication. We are adding a tool to Office 365 with Microsoft Teams, a chat-based workspace designed to empower the art of teams.”

Teams is a work-focused chat tool, which offers what Microsoft describes as a hub for teamwork. The Office applications and services that teams use every day — Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, OneNote and PowerBI— are all built-in, so people have the information and tools they need, Microsoft said.

It offers email integration and video calling on Android, and Microsoft said it will be also be releasing video calling on iOS and Windows Phone.

The tool provides a platform for third-party add-ons. Software companies building tools for Microsoft Team include SAP, Trello, Hipmunk, Growbot and ModuleQ.

One customer, Trek Bicycle, has used Microsoft Teams to enable its staff to work more effectively. Laurie Koch, vice-president of global customer service at Trek Bicycle, said: “Across Trek’s global teams, the integrated collection of Office 365 apps serves up a common toolset to collaboratively drive the business forward.

“We see Microsoft Teams as the project hub of Office 365 where everybody knows where to find the latest documents, notes and tasks, all in line with team conversations for complete context. Teams is quickly becoming a key part of Trek’s get-things-done-fast culture.”

Other customers include Alaska Airlines, ConocoPhillips, Deloitte, Expedia, J.B. Hunt, J. Walter Thompson, Hendrick Motorsports, Sage, and Three UK.

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