There’s A Major Change Coming For Microsoft Office 365

The suite will soon be more customizable and, according to critics, fairer. There’s A Major Change Coming For Microsoft Office 365 Shutterstock

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If you’ve ever been frustrated by the inability to install Microsoft Office 365 without the Teams component, you’re not alone. And the European Union has been leading an effort to compel the tech titan to separate the business-focused chat program from the rest of the software suite.

And now, it appears that Microsoft has read the writing on the wall.

The company’s statement

According to a blog post published this week, Microsoft is launching a new stripped-down version of Office 365 in the EU and Switzerland. It does not include Teams, which was initially added to the program in 2016 and has grown to include more than 320 million users.

Over that time, however, its compulsory inclusion in the Office 365 suite has drawn backlash from users, regulators, and competitors alike.

For its part, Microsoft broadly addressed the change without specifically acknowledging the criticism it has received in recent years.

“Globally consistent licensing helps ensure clarity for customers and streamline decision making and negotiations,” the blog post asserted.

For those who do want Teams, it will still be available as a standalone product.

One rival claims victory

Not only has Office 365’s decision to include Teams rubbed some users the wrong way, but the decision was described by chief rival Slack as an “illegal” display of Microsoft’s massive influence.

Specifically, the Salesforce-owned Slack asserted that Microsoft had subtly included the cost of Teams within each Office 365 license, essentially compelling companies and individuals to use its chat software instead of Slack.

It’s worth noting, though, that the cost reduction for Office 365 is just $2.25 per month while the monthly cost of Teams alone is $5.25, which means a subscription to both will now be higher than it was when the programs were bundled together.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee April 8th, 2024
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