Hold onto your keyboards, folks, because Microsoft just pulled off a surprising move that has us all laughing in disbelief. They’ve decided to give the boot to their built-in Microsoft Teams client in Windows 11. Apparently, the integration was as awkward as trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Instead, Microsoft is waving their magic wand and conjuring up a standalone free version of Microsoft Teams, available as a separate app for Windows 10. Abracadabra!
In a blog post, Brandon LeBlanc, Microsoft’s senior program manager, said, “Sayonara Chat, and hello Microsoft Teams – Free! We’ve pinned it to your taskbar by default, but don’t worry, you can unpin it just like any other app. Ta-da!” We asked Microsoft for some hilarious insights into why Chat got the boot, but they haven’t responded yet. Maybe they’re too busy chuckling themselves.
The original Teams integration, called Chat, was a quirky little creature deeply embedded in the Windows 11 operating system. It was like that one cousin who insists on crashing family dinners uninvited. Enabled by default, the Chat app sat on the taskbar, and removing it required some serious Settings spelunking. It allowed consumers to use Microsoft Teams to reach out to friends and family, but let’s face it, it was about as useful as a snorkel in a desert—great for consumers, but not so much for the workaholics relying on the work version of Teams. As a result, Windows 11 users ended up with a double dose of Teams confusion, juggling personal and work calls like circus performers.
Microsoft Teams 2.0
But hold your laughter, there’s more! Microsoft had been sprucing up Chat in Windows 11, adding new features like better video calling (cue the applause) and even Discord-like communities and an AI art tool. Talk about a virtual rollercoaster ride! It turns out that the built-in Chat functionality in Windows 11 was based on the Microsoft Teams 2.0 client, which served as the foundation for the shiny new Microsoft Teams app that businesses are getting their hands on right now. They must have realized that two Teams are not always better than one.
This Teams-termination spree follows Microsoft’s recent decision to bid farewell to Cortana on Windows 11. It seems like Microsoft is sweeping out the old to make room for the new, like cleaning out your closet to make space for more AI-powered goodies. Panos Panay, the Windows chief, has been dropping hints left and right about the magic of AI, claiming it will revolutionize how we do everything on Windows. Watch out, world, the AI-powered Windows Copilot tool is coming for ya!
Oh, and just a few months ago, Microsoft also waved goodbye to bundling Teams with Office, much to the delight of EU regulators. Apparently, Slack was getting a little too jealous of Teams hogging the spotlight and filed a complaint. Well, no need to worry, dear regulators, because Microsoft is detangling the Teams-Office bundle faster than you can say “regulatory red tape.”
So, there you have it, folks. Microsoft is breaking up with Windows 11’s built-in Teams client and sending it packing. Now it’s up to the standalone Microsoft Teams app to fill the void and keep us all connected and entertained. Let’s hope this new solo act will have us rolling in the virtual aisles with laughter. Stay tuned for more comedic updates from the world of tech!