Microsoft to rebrand Planner app in Teams as 'Tasks'

Tasks in Teams -- the new branding for the Planner app in Teams -- is coming this summer and will consolidate tasks across To Do, Teams Channels, Planner and Outlook Tasks.

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Credit: Microsoft

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In yet another potentially confusing rebrand, Microsoft is renaming its Planner app for Teams as "Tasks." The Teams Tasks app will allow users to see their individual tasks and team tasks in a single app, according to a notification Microsoft is sending out to Office 365 commercial users. The change will begin in May or June and is expected to be completed by mid-July, officials said.

The move seems similar to what Microsoft announced recently around Yammer in Teams. The Yammer Teams app is being rechristened as "Communities." But outside of Teams, the Yammer app will continue to be known as Yammer. And I believe outside of Teams, the Planner app will remain "Planner," but I am asking Microsoft just to be sure.

There is more going on than just a rebranding in the case of Planner in Teams, however. The Microsoft 365 roadmap, which now includes an item called "Tasks in Teams," describes the coming Tasks app as providing users with a consolidation of tasks across Microsoft To Do, Teams channels, Planner, and Outlook Tasks. 

Microsoft announced plans to consolidate To Do and Planner last Fall but didn't provide specifics around timing for the new Tasks in Teams experience at that time. Officials said a new Tasks app and Tasks tab would be coming to Teams and that Outlook endpoints would be coming, as well in 2020.

The coming Tasks in Teams will include a variety of views: List, Boards, Charts, and Schedules. In addition, according to the M365 Roadmap explanation:

"With the new Tasks experience in Teams, we are delivering several capabilities that will support new levels of team collaboration. Tasks targeting, publishing, and reporting in Teams allows corporate and regional leadership to send task lists targeted to the relevant locations, such as specific retail stores, and track their progress through automatic real-time reports. Managers have tools to easily direct activities within their stores, and Firstline Workers have a simple prioritized list available via their personal or company-issued mobile device showing them exactly what to do next."

In related news, just a reminder that next week, May 6, is when Microsoft will be shutting down Wunderlist and replacing it with Microsoft To Do.