Microsoft unveils O365 bundles, sunsets Skype for Business client

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Microsoft accidentally leaked word of its plans to migrate its Skype for Business customers to its Teams chat-based collaboration service a couple weeks ago. The company is already allowing Office 365 users to upgrade Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft says it has been building a new Skype infrastructure that has been "evolving rapidly", and it will serve as the enterprise-grade service for voice, video, and meetings in Microsoft Teams.

"By replacing the desktop Skype for Business Online client with Teams, Microsoft is exposing the Teams experience to a significantly broader audience", Cannell said.

In related news, Microsoft also plans to release a new version of Skype for Business Server in the second half of 2018 for customers who are not yet ready to move their PBX and advanced calling capabilities to the cloud. Microsoft will soon be introducing an improved set of calling and meeting features for Microsoft Teams which support inbound and outbound calls to PSTN numbers, hold, call transfer and voicemail.

Teams will also lean on artificial intelligence, machine learning and speech recognition for features such as finding the relevant documents and files ahead of meetings, and setting reminders for follow-ups on action items.

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But, knowing that Microsoft is moving its preferred communication tool to be nested inside of Teams, you can expect that new features will arrive for that platform first going forward.

Microsoft is bolstering Microsoft Teams to better challenge Slack in the battle of the collaborative, chatty workplace apps. Microsoft Teams will become the core communications client in Office 365, eventually replacing the current Skype for Business client, though the company didn't give a specific timeframe.

Its latest effort in the area includes a new, yet to be named programming language that works with its Visual Studio integrated development environment.

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