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Microsoft Teams vs Skype: Preparing for your Skype for Business Upgrade and Migration

By Amanda Daly | Thursday, March 18th, 2021

If your company is still utilizing Skype For Business Online to communicate remotely, beginning August 1, 2021, you will lose the ability to hold socially distanced meetings, instant messaging, and video calls as Skype for Business is reaching it's end of life July 31, 2021. In this article, we will talk about why you should make the switch to Teams and things you need to know. 

What is Skype for Business?

Skype for Business is an enterprise software application for instant messaging and videotelephony developed by Microsoft as part of the Microsoft Office suite. It is designed for use with the on-premises Skype for Business Server software, and a software as a service version offered as part of Office 365.

What is Teams?

Microsoft describes Teams as a collaboration tool that allows you to work remotely without feeling remote. Chat, meetings, calling, collaborations- Microsoft Teams is a unified communication and collaboration platform.

Skype and Teams have a lot of overlap, which is the reason Microsoft is phasing out the former and recommending users switch to the latter. Both offer audio and video conferencing functionality with enterprise-level security, but Teams also allows you to chat and/or share files with other users. As technology evolves, we are seeing more clients utilize Microsoft Teams and wanted to share some key differences between Skype and Teams as you should make the transition before Skype reaches end of life. 

  • Persistent Chat: In Skype for Business when a chat is closed or timed out the chat is virtually lost (logs are kept). Teams provides Persistent Chat so the chat history remains and resumes with the next message.

  • Team Messaging: “Teams” (i.e. by department, project, client) can be created for an ongoing stream of information including chats, document sharing and meetings.

  • Meetings: The features are similar to Skype for Business but brings new features including customized backgrounds, whiteboard masking, live captions and live events with access available to users outside of Microsoft Teams.

A seamless and secure communication process is a must-have for organizations of all sizes and industries. One of the best ways to ensure that your business can collaborate optimally is by using a platform that utilizes the best tools and solutions, enabling your team members to work frequently and easily, whenever and wherever they are.

For more on Teams, we published a video with tips on using Teams to power remote collaboration. You can view it below. 

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