Microsoft to unbundle Teams from Office in response to EU antitrust probe

Microsoft announced it would offer its Teams independently from its Office product internationally six months after unbundling the two products in Europe to avoid EU antitrust penalties.

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Microsoft plans to separate its chat and video app, Teams, from its Office suite on a global scale in response to antitrust scrutiny. This decision comes after the European Commission triggered a similar separation in Europe in 2023, following a complaint by rival Salesforce-owned Slack.

In a blog post, Microsoft confirmed it is launching a new line of commercial Microsoft 365 and Office 365 suites without Teams in areas outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland, and a new standalone Teams option is available for Enterprise customers in those markets.

Why does it matter?

The European Commission has been investigating Microsoft’s bundling of Office and Teams since a 2020 complaint by messaging app Slack, claiming that Microsoft’s coupling of Teams with Office gave it an unfair market advantage. Last October, the tech giant began selling the two products separately in the EU and Switzerland. Despite the announced changes, Microsoft may still face EU antitrust fines in the coming months, with rivals continuously challenging the pricing and interoperability of their services with Office Web applications.