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Microsoft’s Teams platform is turning one this week and with more than 200,000 businesses using the software, it’s fair to say that it has been a successful first year for the product. But, more importantly for those that are using the software, the company is sharing a few features that are working their way down the pipeline.

When the company announced the general availability of Teams, there were 50,000 businesses who were using it at that time, and with 200,000 businesses now using the software, this shows a considerable amount of growth during the first full year of availability. That being said, Microsoft doesn’t detail how many users inside of the 200,000 businesses are using it or if companies are simply trialling the software or have limited deployments.

For those that are using the software, Microsoft has detailed some features that will be arriving this year that include:
– Cloud recording, providing one-click meeting recordings with automatic transcription and timecoding, enabling all team members the ability to read captions, search within the conversation, and playback all or part of the meeting

– In-line message translation, enabling people who speak different languages to fluidly communicate with one another by translating posts in channels and chat;

– Cortana voice interactions for Teams-enabled devices, including IP phones and conference room devices, enabling you to easily make a call, join a meeting or add other people to a meeting in Teams using spoken natural language

– Background blur on video, providing the ability to blur your background during video calls so other meeting attendees can focus on you, not what’s behind you

– Proximity detection for Teams Meetings, making it easy for you to discover and add a nearby and available Skype Room System to any meeting

– Mobile sharing in meetings, enabling attendees to share a live video stream, photos, or the screen from their mobile device.

Teams also now has an app ecosystem that continues to grow and includes the likes of Adobe, Trello and along with many others who are turning Teams from a simple collaboration tool to an entire productivity application.

Let us not forget why Microsoft decided to build out Teams, it was because of the success of Slack which makes you wonder if buying the competing software would have been a better move? Considering that during the first year, 150,000 businesses started using the software in some capacity, it would appear that the decision to build a product in-house as opposed to buying up Slack, was the correct move.

Microsoft is going all-in on Teams with the announcement that they will be moving away from Skype for Business in favour of Teams.

Having said all of the above we don’t think Slack will be too concerned just yet when you consider they are believed to have over 9 millions users.

Sources: Petri, Slack and Microsoft