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Microsoft decides to separate Teams from Office 365 & Microsoft 365, amid antitrust investigation

Microsoft is providing users of Microsoft Teams and Office with a choice to switch to alternative offerings devoid of Teams. Furthermore, the company will unveil updated commercial suites of Microsoft 365 and Office 365, sans the Teams application.

Edited By: Saumya Nigam @snigam04 New Delhi Published on: April 01, 2024 17:21 IST
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Image Source : FILE Microsoft

Microsoft has announced plans to unbundle Teams from its Office 365 and Microsoft 365 suites, amid an antitrust investigation by the European Union (EU). The decision comes as a response to the EU's scrutiny over potential anticompetitive behaviour.

Starting today itself (April 1), users of Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Office will have the option to transition to new offerings which exclude Teams. Furthermore, Microsoft will introduce a fresh lineup of commercial Microsoft 365 and Office 365 suites that do not include the Teams application.

The move follows Microsoft's decision to unbundle Teams from its products in Europe, a decision made in response to the ongoing antitrust investigation. However, the ruling of the investigation has yet to be formally announced.

A Microsoft spokesperson stated, "To ensure clarity for our customers, we are extending the steps we took last year to unbundle Teams from M365 and O365 in the European Economic Area and Switzerland to customers globally." This decision aims to address feedback from the European Commission and provide multinational companies with more flexibility in their purchasing decisions across different regions.

Microsoft Teams, a communication and collaboration platform has boasted approximately 320 million monthly active users (MAUs) across the world, making it a significant component of Microsoft's suite of productivity tools.

The European Commission's investigation into Microsoft's practices centers on concerns regarding potential market abuse and competition restrictions in the productivity software sector within the European Economic Area (EEA). Specifically, the Commission is examining Microsoft's actions concerning communication and collaboration products, including Teams.

By unbundling Teams from its Office suites, Microsoft aims to demonstrate its commitment to addressing regulatory concerns and fostering a competitive landscape in the productivity software market. The decision to unbundle Teams globally reflects Microsoft's efforts to comply with regulatory requirements and provide customers with greater flexibility in selecting their preferred software solutions.

As the investigation unfolds and regulatory scrutiny continues, Microsoft's decision to unbundle Teams from its Office offerings underscores the company's dedication to transparency and compliance with antitrust regulations in the European market and beyond.

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Inputs from IANS

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