If you planned on heading to an event in the coming months, the chances are your plans have been changed. The coronavirus outbreak has resulted in numerous major conferences and events being cancelled. From Mobile World Congress and the Geneva Motor Show to the postponement of the Italian Serie A.
To help people stay connected and productive during the outbreak. Microsoft is offering a free six-month trial to the premium version of Microsoft Teams. Now available globally, the tier will help organizations manage their workforces and remain connected. When signing up for the tier, customers will work with a Microsoft sales team member to help the set-up process.
Microsoft also says it will update the free Microsoft Teams on March 10th to remove restrictions on how many people can be part of a team. Elsewhere, the service will also now allow users to schedule conferences and video calls.
For Microsoft, we have seen how coronavirus (COVID 19) has had a widespread affect on the company. For example, Redmond confirmed it is dropping its own Ignite the Tour events in Hong Kong and Zurich.
Microsoft said it would move its MWC-planned mixed reality announcements to a Dev Days event before Build 2020. However, the Seattle area is the epicenter of the outbreak in the US and Microsoft may have to cancel the Build event. The company's Melbourne IoT Action event was also cancelled.
In other words, there are a lot of Microsoft partners, customers, and developers who won't get direct access to the company this year.
Microsoft knows customers could be cut off from each other as isolation becomes increasingly necessary to combat coronavirus. Indeed, the company has already said Microsoft Teams adoption is soaring following the outbreak.
Google is taking a similar path as Microsoft. The company has announced its advanced features for Hangouts Meet will be available for all G Suite users globally. This allowance is currently in place until July 1.
These premium features usually cost $13 per month and allow users to host streams of up to 100,000 viewers. Meetings of up to 250 participants are also available through this tier.