Skype for Business is becoming Teams

SfB is now Teams 2

Yesterday screenshots of a login announcement and Office 365 message were circulated suggesting Microsoft will move forward with re-branding Skype for Business as Teams.  Many have expected this since the Teams release due to the feature overlap.  When will this happen and what will it look like?

SfB is now Teams 1

We’re upgrading Skype Business to Microsoft Teams. This will take us some time to complete. For now, this is an opt-in
experience as we continue to work on enhancing the Microsoft Teams experience.
We encourage you to take control of your upgrade to Microsoft Teams. Start yourself getting familiar with the Microsoft Teams experience. If you are ready to upgrade your users to Microsoft Teams, click Additional Information to learn more.
If you are not ready upgrade your users, there is nothing more you need to do. We will provide the next notification at
least 30 days before we start your upgrade. If there are any actions you need to take, we let you know.
Please click Additional Information to learn more.
Additional information

I expect an announcement later this month at Microsoft Ignite.  I expect that there will be a push to move users from the legacy Skype for Business/Lync client and into the new Teams client.  I do not expect a simple re-branding of the existing Skype for Business Client.

The reasons for this are the Teams platform is brand new, cloud based, taking advantage of the latest codecs and where the development innovation seems targeted.  More simply, looking at the login announcement message suggests the start using Teams button will redirect to that client.

The reasons not to do this are further confusion and missing features.  With regards to confusion, how do we migrate users into this new client that looks, feels and operates entirely differently without utter confusion?  Even with ample training, there are still some missing features.

Teams doesn’t have federation support (*edit* guest access has been added), PSTN Calling or PSTN Conferencing.  Will these continue to be provided in the legacy Skype for Business client for now?  Also, teams is an online only product.  What about those still on premises?

Even though some features are still missing, the ones that are there shine already, and further reinforce the redirection to the new client.  Teams has one on one and group chat covered, and it’s persistent and has additional features.  These beat Skype for Business handily.  The Teams version of PC to PC and group calling are using the latest generation codecs.

It seems like all Skype for Business functionality will eventually migration to Teams and there may be a confusing period of time for early adopters.

What is your prediction?

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3 thoughts on “Skype for Business is becoming Teams

    1. Thanks for the reply.

      I don’t think on premises will be abandoned. Skype for Business Server 2015 has mainstream support through 2020 and extended support through 2025. https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/lifecycle/search?alpha=Skype%20for%20Business%20Server%202015

      I think there will be less innovation on premises. The Skype for Business Server vNext session at Ignite will be very interesting. https://myignite.microsoft.com/sessions/53241

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