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Microsoft Teams to let users make free 24-hour calls, add personal accounts on desktop to sync chats

Microsoft Teams will soon roll out 24-hour free video calls feature for all users. It is currently available in preview mode in the mobile app.

twitter-logoYasmin Ahmed | November 23, 2020 | Updated 16:06 IST

Highlights

  • Microsoft Teams is rolling out 24-hour free video calls for users. It is currently available in preview mode in the mobile app.
  • Users can receive calls without having a Microsoft account through a link from the host.
  • Microsoft Teams will allow customers to add their personal accounts in the Teams desktop or web application to sync all their chats to their computer.

Microsoft Teams users will now be able to make 24 hour free video calls. The company is soon going to roll out 24-hour video calls for all users at no additional cost. It is also going to allow users to add personal accounts in the Teams desktop or web application. The new feature supports up to 300 participants and has been rolled out in preview mode in the Teams mobile application and will be made available for all the users in the coming weeks.

"To help you stay connected in the coming months, you will be able to meet for 24 hours with up to 300 participants until further specified," the company said in a blog post.

Microsoft Teams will allow customers to add their account in the Teams desktop or web application to sync all their chats to their computer. The company's platform can also be accessed by users who do not have the application installed on their devices. The connection between the existing users of Teams and contacts who do not have the app installed on their devices will be established with the help of a link that can be accessed from any of the internet browsers.

However, to start a video call with Microsoft Teams, the host will need a Microsoft account. Once logged in, the host can simply share the meeting link to friends and family who can then join the meeting via the Web for free without even needing a Microsoft account.

Microsoft recently allowed its Team users to integrate other applications as well while using the video-conferencing application to make their experience more productive.

Over the past few months, Microsoft Teams has announced features to make the experience of video calling more interesting and to make work from home more productive. It also has features in the pipeline like virtual commutes. Microsoft noted that commute time helps employees with productivity as they get time to reflect. The virtual commute feature will be brought about in 2021. The feature will schedule a virtual commute at the start and end of users' day.

"What we're finding is that that commute experience it's good for it not to be too long, but it did play a role in helping us clear our heads," Microsoft 365 corporate vice president Jared Spataro had said in a press briefing. Microsoft has also partnered with Headspace to let employees schedule mindful meditation sessions. "You can either schedule a meditation as part of your virtual commute or as part of a mindfulness break throughout the day," Spataro noted. Microsoft found that starting with meditation before a long workday reduces stress and the rate of burnout.

Last month, Google extended Google Meet's 24-hour video calls policy in its free version till March 31, 2021. Zoom has a 40-minute call limit for its video meetings that it occasionally waves off like it recently did for Thanksgiving day. Microsoft has not stated until when it will give free calls to users.

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