Quick Notes on Microsoft Teams After One Day of Use
Background: we have been using Slack (Standard paid plan) for the last 2+ years in a small team of 10–15 people. We have been an Office 365 customer for the last 3+ years. And we’ve been playing with Microsoft Teams for 1 day :)
- the product is very polished and well rounded for v.0.6 preview. Snappy (this was predicted to be otherwise by my skeptical colleagues :), looks good, has keyboard shortcuts (not sure if very well implemented though), etc.
- impressive list of integrations from the get go
- video/audio meetings are easy to start and seem to work great (very limited test). Screen sharing is limited to full monitors though (no window sharing, yet)
- tabs — you have access to files, notes, etc. associated with chat channel right away and you can add various other things (like Planner or Power BI report)
- deep O365 integration gives hope that we may finally start really collaborating on files online (right now many take an easy copout of emailing file attachments or dropping them in Slack)
- apps for all major platforms
- part of Office 365 business plans (aka free for O365 customers)
The odd and so-so
- threaded chats won’t work as far as I can tell right now. They are not very “flow friendly” — you have to click around, compose all of your thoughts in one post (otherwise your thoughts may end up out of original order) and, most importantly, one person replying out-of-thread creates a big mess.
- where are my GIFs? :) It’s not like I’m missing them much, but they were a big part of the demos and they are missing (at least for us):
- drag-n-drop’ing files doesn’t work yet (Windows app). I’m sure this will be fixed soon, but a noticeable annoyance for now. At least pasting images works.
- Web version seems to be picky about browser support (so much for “feature detection”)
- tabs vary in usefulness based on implementation —dependent on what embedded service can do in such context. Not sure if it’s possible to make “Teams-aware” tab add-ins
- no video/voice calls in mobile apps (at least on Windows Mobile and Android). I’m pretty sure it’s coming though.
The bad and potentially deal-breaking
- right now it’s impossible to add external guests to your teams. This is supposedly coming in time for general release in early 2017. However the terms are unclear right now. This is critical for us and, I presume, for majority of potential users. We often bring single channel guests into Slack while working on some project. Adding them as full O365 users would be a major overkill, imo.
- I can’t see a way to run Teams for more than one organization without constantly logging out and in. So if you are a member of multiple O365 orgs you are kinda screwed. I guess you can run the web version in different browsers, but that’s a limited and backwards workaround. If not resolved this could become especially painful once guest access is released (people being on multiple teams as guests).
That’s it for now. While it doesn’t look like we could comfortably switch from Slack right away, it definitely looks promising and attractive in not so distant future.
Have you tried Teams? What’s your experience?