Microsoft is all set to add the collaboration capabilities of Teams to the Outlook email client by the end of the year. The new feature will help Outlook users directly access the Teams collaboration platform from the email client to streamline business communications when using either product.
The update is likely to minimise the requirement for employees to click between programs to do their work. Irwin Lazar, an analyst at research firm Metrigy, said Microsoft could merge Outlook and Teams further in the future. "It probably makes sense for [Microsoft], longer-term, to consolidate those apps," Lazar said. However, Microsoft will have to first consolidate the capabilities of both products without making the user interface overly complicated.
According to a study by email marketing company Litmus Labs, Outlook is the fourth-most-popular email client in the market, but Teams has grown sixfold during the last two years to 270 million users. Combining both will merge the key communication technologies of Microsoft as Teams draws users from Outlook.
Users could avoid clicking away to Outlook if Microsoft brought email into Teams. It will help users people move information from an email into a group chat.
Lazar further added that email clients will not disappear anytime soon while collaboration platforms have reduced email usage. It was further added that they still remain the best way of reaching people outside of an organisation.