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Microsoft will no longer offer Teams as a standard solution inside Office 365 and Microsoft 365. This had been the case within the European Union since October, but now the change to the 365 suite applies globally.

Microsoft stepped away from its Teams bundling starting in October in an effort to address concerns from European competition authorities. The inclusion within the 365 suite allegedly put Microsoft’s video conferencing solution at an unfair advantage over its competitors.

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan felt the same way in September, after which he expressed hope that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission would also have a critical look at the Teams bundling. That now seems unnecessary.

‘Realigning’ global licenses

Microsoft has now announced that the unbundling of Teams will work the same way globally as it already does within Europe. This means that users can opt for a Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite without Teams, while there is also a stand-alone option to purchase Teams as an Enterprise customer.

Although the EU has directly affected Microsoft’s policy, the tech company told partners that the change did not necessarily benefit users and served as a compromise solution. Over 320 million individuals worldwide use Teams and can be considered the go-to video conferencing option for Windows users.

The Teams offering itself continues to expand. For example, the application is intended to become simpler, more consistent and more AI-driven this year. New integrations with other 365 apps remain absent for now, but Copilot could change that. An AI feature like Intelligent Recap could potentially create a Word file to summarize a meeting. It’s unclear how far Microsoft will go to push Teams in this way.

Reading tip: What can we expect from Microsoft Teams in 2024?