Microsoft creates new standalone Teams Essentials edition for SMBs

Microsoft is adding a new standalone Teams SKU for small-and-midsize businesses to its lineup, which will cost $48 per user per year.

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Credit: Microsoft

Today Microsoft released a new standalone edition of Teams called Teams Essentials. Microsoft aimed the new SKU, which costs $4 per person each month, or $48 per year, at small and mid-size businesses (SMBs).

Teams Essentials will give users unlimited group meetings for up to 30 hours, meetings with up to 300 people, and 10 GB of cloud storage per user. In addition, Teams Essentials includes the same capabilities available in the free version of Teams. Among the new and existing capabilities in free Teams, Microsoft highlighted the following:

  • Invitations that require only an email address and no need to sign up, sign in or install Teams to participate in a meeting.
  • Google Calendar integration (coming "soon") in addition to Outlook Calendar integration
  • Meeting tools like meeting lobby, virtual backgrounds, Together mode, live closed captions, and live reactions
  • New small-business group-chat template (coming "soon") to desktop and web

Microsoft is making Teams Essentials available for purchase directly from Microsoft and also through several of the company's cloud partners.

In other Teams news today, Microsoft has begun rolling out the promised Loop integration with Teams to Microsoft 365 commercial customers. Microsoft Loop is both a rebrand of many parts of the Microsoft Fluid Framework and a standalone collaboration and project management tool in its own right.

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