Microsoft is moving a number of features from the preview phase to the general availability phase for mainstream users of the platform, and is also adding "Together mode" backgrounds for personal use.
Microsoft is making a number of the "personal" features promised for Teams available to everyone. These features will be available for Teams in desktop, web and mobile versions. Microsoft is also adding new backgrounds to together mode for home users of Teams on web and desktop, starting Monday.
Last year, Microsoft announced new features to its Teams home product, across all platforms. Note that there are no separate Teams consumer app. Microsoft hopes users will find Teams a useful productivity tool for managing group events and calendars, texting and video chats to friends, and assigning and following chats.
Among the new features moving into general availability today is the ability to participate in group chats via SMS, for those who don't use Teams. Two-way texting is available today in the United States, Canada and Mexico, and partially in the United Kingdom, India, Brazil and Colombia. Microsoft specifies that it is taking a "phased" approach to the availability of this feature.
A survey option available soon
Microsoft has also indicated that it plans to add a poll feature for general public users of Teams, which will be available "in the coming weeks."
Teams personal features are available free of charge. Anyone with a Professional Teams account can add a personal account directly to it. Those who do not yet have a Teams account can download the iOS, Android, and / or desktop apps and register or use Teams in any web browser.
Through Mainstream Teams, Microsoft allows people to meet one-on-one and talk for up to 24 hours for free. For group calls, users can meet with up to 100 participants for 60 minutes for free. For now, Microsoft is giving up its limits due to the pandemic, and is allowing group chats with 300 participants, for up to 24 hours, free of charge.