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Microsoft Teams Review

By Chad Brooks, business.com Writer | Updated Apr 23, 2020

Microsoft Teams provides full video conferencing services as well as other tools to foster collaboration among your employees. What truly makes this service appealing is its integration with other Microsoft Office applications. If you already use Word, Excel and Outlook, integrating Teams into your workflow is a simple process. Considering everything you get access to, this is one of the most affordable video conferencing services we found in our research. Among the key features are meeting notes, webinar recordings, polls and surveys, screen sharing, and whiteboards.   

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams

The Best Video Conferencing Service Reviews of 2020

The Verdict

Microsoft Teams is a quality video conference solution that integrates with other popular Microsoft programs, including Word, Excel and Outlook. It has a number of valuable features, including desktop sharing and chat messaging.

To see all of our recommendations for video conferencing services, visit our best picks page

Microsoft Teams Pricing 

Microsoft Teams is an affordable video conference solution – and unlike with stand-alone services, you aren't just paying for a video conferencing platform. You purchase a Microsoft Office 365 subscription that includes Microsoft Teams as well as other Microsoft programs. 

Both Office 365 plans allow you to host meeting with up to 250 attendees and include 1TB of cloud storage. Here are how the plans stack up against each other. 

Office 365 Business Essentials

  • Cost: $5 per user per month with an annual commitment; $6 per user per month with a monthly commitment
  • Features: Screen sharing, guest access, scheduled meetings, meeting recording, team chat, custom email domain address, the ability to host webinars, audio conferencing, scheduling assistance, note taking, desktop sharing, uploading files and chat messaging
  • Microsoft programs:Exchange, OneDrive, SharePoint, and web versions of Word, Excel and PowerPoint   

Office 365 Business Premium

  • Cost:$12.50 per user per month with an annual commitment; $15 per user per month with a monthly commitment
  • Features: Everything in the Essentials plan plus the ability to plan schedules and daily tasks, and access to Microsoft Bookings and MileIQ
  • Microsoft programs:Exchange, OneDrive, SharePoint, Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher and Access  

Microsoft Teams is also available in a free plan. However, with the free version, you can't host video conferences with multiple people. You can have one-on-one video calls, but if you need to host video meetings with multiple attendees, you will need one of the paid plans. 

Larger organizations can choose from several Microsoft Office 365 enterprise plans. One of the biggest differences is that these plans support an unlimited number of users. The enterprise plans cost $8 to $35 per user per month. You can examine these plans here.  

Features  

While it might not have all the features as other video conferencing services, Microsoft Teams provides many of the most valuable ones.   

You can, for instance, host calls with up to 250 participants – and webinars for thousands of people at one time. The host can share their screen and record the meeting for those who can't attend. Meeting hosts can also mute others, turn cameras on and off, remove other participants, and customize the specific features an attendee can access.   

Microsoft Teams allows you to create polls and surveys during a meeting to gather feedback, and team members can use whiteboards to foster collaboration and jot down important points with the built-in note-taking tool. 

Microsoft Teams is compatible with cameras, microphones, displays and speakers to add video functionality to a conference room or other rooms in an office.  

Microsoft Teams Pros 

One of the biggest benefits of Microsoft Teams is its integration with other Microsoft programs. Access to Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint and Teams for one low cost can be a huge plus for businesses. If you already use these programs, you don't have to pay extra for a video conferencing service. On the other hand, if all you want is a program that lets you chat and have one-on-one video calls, the Microsoft Teams free plan is a nice option. 

We found Microsoft Teams relatively simple to use. You can sign up for the service using just an email address. Once you are logged in, you invite others to join your team. Anyone inside or outside of your organization can be on your team for video meetings and group chats. This is an excellent communication tool that lets you collaborate in real time with your colleagues, clients or any stakeholders.  

The software is easy to understand. There are buttons on the bottom of the screen that allow you to turn your audio and video on and off or share your screen.  

Microsoft Teams Cons 

One downside to Microsoft Teams is that you can't conduct video conferences from a web browser. There is a web app, but to host or join a video meeting, you need to be on either the desktop or mobile app. 

Another potential negative is that reaching someone at Microsoft for support, especially by phone, can be difficult. Since Microsoft supports so many programs, finding a representative who can provide help specifically for Microsoft Teams can be trying. Our call was transferred several times before we spoke with someone who helped us. 

Customer Support  

The best way to reach Microsoft is online. You fill out an online form to get help from various self-help resources. In addition, your company's Office 365 administrator can contact Microsoft directly for help.   

Microsoft's website offers valuable support materials specifically related to Microsoft Teams, such as training videos, articles and tips on all of the system's features, so you can usually find an answer to your question that way.  

Editor's note: Looking for information on video conferencing software? Use the questionnaire below, and our vendor partners will contact you with the information you need: 

 

 

Image Credit: EvgeniyShkolenko / Getty Images
Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams

The Best Video Conferencing Service Reviews of 2020

The Verdict

Microsoft Teams is a quality video conference solution that integrates with other popular Microsoft programs, including Word, Excel and Outlook. It has a number of valuable features, including desktop sharing and chat messaging.

Chad Brooks: Writer
Chad Brooks,
business.com Writer
Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer with more than 20 years of media experience. A graduate of Indiana University, Chad began his career with Business News Daily in 2011 as a freelance writer. In 2014, he joined the staff as a senior writer. Currently, Chad covers a wide range of B2B products and services, including business phone systems, time and attendance systems, payroll services, and conference call services. Before joining Business News Daily and business.com, Chad spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago. Chad's first book, "How to Start a Home-Based App Development Business," was published in 2014. He lives with his wife and daughter in the Chicago suburbs.