Microsoft Teams allows users to chat across personal, business accounts

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Microsoft is rolling out a new feature in its video collaboration platform Teams that will allow users to chat across personal and business Teams accounts.

Teams consumer and enterprise users will be able to chat between the two platforms by mid-January. The company made this capability available worldwide as a preview in November last year.

“With this update, Teams users in your organisation will be able to start a 1:1 or a group chat with Teams users who are using their personal accounts and vice-versa,” the company said in an update.

With this update, the users will be able to invite any Teams user to chat using an email address or phone number and remain within the security and compliance policies of their organization.

The feature is rolling out for Teams on the web, desktop, and mobile.

Admins will be able to enable or disable this capability at both the tenant and individual-user levels.

Up to now, any attempt to chat with a Teams enterprise user from Teams consumer results in an exchange of email, which is not quite the immediate connection delivered by chat.

“Unlike external federation with Skype consumer users, Teams consumer supports both 1:1 and group chats. Another interesting aspect is that Teams enterprise users can find Teams consumer users with their email address or phone number (obviously, this must be the phone number registered by the user when they signed up for Teams consumer),” according to the update.

You can add a Teams consumer user to a group chat, but you can’t share previous chats as a new chat starts to accommodate the external user.

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