One week after the start of Microsoft's rollout of its Teams service to Office 365 business users, Microsoft has started delivering Teams to Office 365 Education customers.
Microsoft Teams will be a free add-on to Office 365 Education users if they have an Education, Education Plus, Education E3 and/or an Education E5 suite plan. Microsoft is not making Microsoft Teams available as a standalone offering.
As of last week, Teams is available in 181 Office 365 markets in 19 languages.
According to Microsoft's March 21 Tech Community blog post:
"Starting March 20, 2017, Teams will be off by default and available to IT admins to turn on for their institutions. We recommend that IT admins enable Microsoft Teams and begin using it now within their IT organizations; and for targeted groups of faculty, staff, teachers, and higher-education students."
Microsoft Teams runs on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and web platforms. Teams supports the web client on Microsoft Edge 12+, Internet Explorer 11+, Firefox 47.0+, and Chrome 51.0+. Safari users currently are directed to download the desktop client.
Microsoft officials declined to say last week when Microsoft Teams would be available to Office 365 Education users.
Microsoft Teams is Redmond's competitor to Slack. But unlike Slack, Microsoft isn't trying to eliminate the need for email with Teams, company execs emphasized. Microsoft is working to simplify moving conversations from email into Teams, and is providing the ability to email a Teams channel with formatting, flags, and attachments all supported. And Microsoft Outlook-Teams integration will continue to get deeper, officials said.