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Difference between Microsoft Teams and Slack

With the world shifting its operations to the online space, the creation and development of online working tools is not only a convenience but a necessity. And with the COVID-19 pandemic, these online tools have taken over business operations. The transformation, convenience and functionality cannot be ignored. However, these tools offer different features. As such, users must pick their ideal tool of use based on the activities they intend to undertake. In this article, we will look at the difference between Microsoft Teams and Slack. 

Microsoft Teams

Developed by Microsoft, this is a business communication platform that has been in operation since 2017. The platform offers videoconferencing, application integration, workspace chat and file storage, primarily competing with Slack. 

Microsoft Teams is replacing other collaboration and messaging platforms developed by Microsoft including Microsoft Classroom and Skype for Business. 

Among features that users get to enjoy include:

  • Calling- Microsoft Teams provides calling via Voice over IP, video conferencing and instant messaging. Users can also call numbers from their clients. 
  • Teams live events- This can broadcast 10,000 participants. Teams live events replaced Skype Meeting Broadcast.
  • Chats- This is one of the most popular Microsoft Teams features. Users can get to communicate easily without the need to check the conversation history.
  • File sharing
  • Channels- These are conversations that enable communication without the use of group SMS or email.
  • Protocols
  • Education

Slack

Developed by Slack, this is a proprietary business communication platform that offers many features. It was launched in 2013 as an internal tool for Tiny Speck, Stewart Butterfield’s company. The platform has now grown over the years and is now Microsoft Teams’ biggest competitor. 

Here are some features that users get to enjoy. 

  • Messaging- Users can communicate without group SMS or email via public channels. And with private channels, smaller groups can hold private conversations. The platform also has direct messages which allow sharing of messages to specific users. 
  • Teams- Slack allows teams, groups, or communities to join a workspace via an invitation. 
  • Integrations- Slack integrations add-ons to the functionality of the platform. The platform supports integrations such as Trello, Google Drive, Heroku, GitHub, Zapier and Dropbox, just to mention a few. 
  • Platforms- Slack is available on Android, iOS as well as others. 
  • API- The Application Programming Interface allows users to automate processes and create applications. The feature is compatible with many types of services, frameworks and applications. 

Similarities between Microsoft Teams vs Slack

  • Both are collaborative software
  • Both have unlimited 1-on-1 audio and video calls 

Differences between Microsoft Teams vs Slack

Developers

Microsoft Teams was developed by Microsoft in 2017. On the other hand, Slack was developed by Slack Technologies in 2013. 

Pricing model

Microsoft Teams is slightly cheaper, with the pricing starting from $5 per month. On the other hand, the pricing for Slack starts at $6.67. 

Video/ Audio calls

Microsoft Teams has a video and voice call feature for up to 250 participants. On the other hand, Slack has an unlimited video and voice calls plan in the free plan and up to 15 participants in the paid plan. 

Screen sharing

Microsoft Teams has a screen sharing feature in all plans. On the other hand, screen sharing is unavailable in Slack for free versions but available in the plus and standard versions. 

Guest access

Microsoft Teams has limited guest access of up to 5 guests per account even for paid plans. On the other hand, Slack has an unlimited guest collaboration for paid plans. 

License

While Microsoft Teams has a proprietary commercial cloud software license, Slack has a proprietary license. 

Microsoft Teams vs Slack: Comparison Table

Summary of Microsoft Teams vs Slack

Microsoft Teams was developed by Microsoft in 2017. By offering videoconferencing, application integration, workspace chat and file storage, the platform is replacing other collaboration and messaging platforms developed by Microsoft including Microsoft Classroom and Skype for Business. On the other hand, Slack was developed by Slack Technologies in 2013. It has different collaborative tools such as messaging, calls and different integrations. Despite the differences, both remain vital business collaborative tools. 

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References :


[0]Balu N Ilag. Introducing Microsoft Teams: Understanding the New Chat-Based Workspace in Office 365. Apress, 2018. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=4ppiDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=microsoft+teams&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjdsvm8t9fvAhX1snEKHYIdBIoQ6AEwAHoECAMQAg#v=onepage&q=microsoft%20teams&f=false

[1]Phil Simon. Slack For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons, 2020. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=vLzhDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA310&dq=Microsoft+teams+vs+slack&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg68-ct9fvAhWiqHEKHVvBB-cQ6AEwAXoECAcQAg#v=onepage&q=Microsoft%20teams%20vs%20slack&f=false

[2]Rosemarie Withee. Microsoft Teams For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons, 2020.https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=q37WDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA17&dq=Microsoft+teams+vs+slack&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg68-ct9fvAhWiqHEKHVvBB-cQ6AEwAnoECAgQAg#v=onepage&q=Microsoft%20teams%20vs%20slack&f=false

[3]Image credit: https://live.staticflickr.com/7519/16116160538_b19b51f91a_b.jpg

[4]Image credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/50/Microsoft_Teams.png

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