Want to Run a Webinar in Teams? You will Need Teams Pro
When it comes to using Microsoft software, there are two universal truths: it will take time to figure out how to actually use the software and it will take even more time to understand how to license it effectively. This is why it’s no surprise to learn that Microsoft will be releasing a new service plan for Teams that will enable additional functionality for the communication hub.
Called ‘Teams Pro’, this new service plan will be available as part of your Microsoft 365 Office 365 and Microsoft 365 E5, E3, A5, A3, Business Standard, and Business Basic license. According to MC238782, look for this new service plan to roll out in mid-March 2021 at the tenant level.
So what does this new service plan include? According to the announcement, it will be tied to meeting intelligence and webinar capabilities.
I think it is the second part of that service plan statement that will be key as Teams is now starting to support webinar functionality. And with a new feature, especially since webinars are a popular tool in the marketing world, adding a new service plan that is linked directly to this, makes sense.
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Webinars are a sizeable market for Teams to expand into and there are many competing platforms in this space. If Microsoft approaches this correctly and undercuts popular alternatives like GoTo Webinar, they stand to entrench the collaboration hub even deeper into the corporate world while pushing out competitors.
The other aspect of the Teams Pro plan is related to meeting intelligence and I suspect that this will be closely linked to webinar functionality – the two fit together like OneDrive and SharePoint. If you host a webinar with Teams, you will want additional insights like time in a session, if they asked a question, etc.
Microsoft has updated the message to provide more information – the short version is that you will not have to pay for additional licenses to use webinar functionality.
“On Feb. 9, we published an MC post regarding a new Teams Pro service plan. To clarify, there is no change to existing product licenses with the addition of this new service plan. Rather, the service plan will be added automatically to Microsoft 365 and Office 365 E5/E3/A5/A3, and Microsoft 365 Business Standard/Business Premium licenses, and will enable users who are licensed for these SKUs to automatically receive capabilities rolling out to Teams in the near future. There is no action required by admins, and no additional purchase is necessary for Microsoft 365 and Office 365 E5/E3/A5/A3 and Microsoft 365 Business Standard/Business Premium licensed users to acquire the new Teams capabilities that will be part of the Teams Pro service plan.”