At its What’s Next for Windows event today, Microsoft announced Windows 11. While arguably an unimpressive introduction if you want sweeping changes, Microsoft says Windows 11 is about spurring creation and productivity. Microsoft Teams fits nicely into that equation and there were some announcements during the event.
We have already discussed how Microsoft Teams is now more deeply integrated into Windows, but there was a more important reveal.
Specifically, Windows 11 will ship with a preinstalled app known as “Chat”, while taps directly into Microsoft Teams. It allows users to easily contact family, friends, and work colleagues on Windows 11 without opening the Teams app.
It is worth noting the consumer version of Teams powers the Chat app and not the enterprise build. Either way, it gives you the full range of interactions you get in chats, such as document sharing, texts, images, and video calls or voice conversations. This works from within the Taskbar for a more seamless experience.
You will also see a Meet Now option in the Chat window, which means you can use that Windows feature to contact anyone, whether they have a Microsoft Account or not. SMS to iOS and Android is also supported through this service.
This is Microsoft way of replacing Skype, which is no longer available as a preinstalled app on Windows 11.
Microsoft is rolling out Windows 11 to Insiders in preview next week, with a wide general release this fall. All Windows 10 users can upgrade to the new platform for free.
Tip of the day: Though many VPN providers have their own apps, you can in many cases connect to a VPN in Windows 10 without any third-party software. This is ideal if you have a self-hosted VPN or if you’re using a PC with restricted permissions. In our tutorial, we’re showing you how to connect to a VPN in Windows 10.