Microsoft has come up with free all-day video calling on the web for its Teams application. It is a big push from the software giant to attract users of other services like Zoom and Google Meet.
It will not require a Microsoft account or even the Microsoft Teams application to join calls.
After launching the Microsoft Teams on mobile earlier this year, it has now brought forth Teams’ friends and family features to the desktop and web. It will allow a meeting of up to 300 friends and family members, which can run free of charge all day long.
It is a big decision especially during the festival season when friends and family can not be together because of the coronavirus pandemic.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner in the United States, Microsoft has positioned Teams as a way for families to connect virtually. It becomes more relevant as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended people not to travel for Thanksgiving.
The Together Mode feature of the Teams will support seeing 49 friends and family members in a gallery view that puts users side by side in a virtual environment.
Its all-day free video calling is the most attractive feature, as it tries to woo customers away from Zoom and other applications, which have time limits. Zoom has a 40-minute limit, which it is lifting temporarily for Thanksgiving. Similarly, Google Meet has a 60-minute limit.
Zoom became popular earlier this year as officegoers, college students, and families started using it to connect to each other in the wake of the pandemic and lockdowns. Microsoft tried to push Skype Meet Now, which did not succeed.
The free video calling feature will give Microsoft Teams an edge over its competitors for now.
To host a meeting on Microsoft Teams, you can visit the Teams website and sign in through a Microsoft account. A video meeting can be created and the link shared with friends and family. Anyone can join the meeting on the web free of charge and without a Microsoft account.