Microsoft Teams is getting this huge upgrade to take on Zoom

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Zoom has charged into the lead as the best video conferencing apps this year, but the company has had plenty of bumps along the way and Microsoft is now narrowing the gap with Teams. 

While Zoom is finally addressing one of its most serious security concerns, Microsoft Teams is looking to shore up one of its biggest feature deficits by vastly expanding the number of simultaneous video callers that it supports (via Forbes).

Until recently, Microsoft Teams only supported up to four simultaneous video streams. In April this was expanded to nine, but the update currently in the works will finally match Zoom's offering with a 49-person gallery view. 

While that could be overkill to a lot of smaller businesses, it is, nonetheless, a feature many competitors have held over Teams, and one the company will be happy to eliminate.

There is no specific timeframe for the rollout of this feature, according to the report from the Wall Street Journal. However, the company has been full speed ahead with Teams in the face of the massive user spike it enjoyed, which resulted in more than 75 million daily users in April, more than double that of early March. 

Jared Spataro, Microsoft 365 corporate vice president, told the Journal, "The thing we heard customers value the most is the ability to chat, meet, call and collaborate all in a single experience." He continued, "the world has changed. We intend to compete and win." 

The stakes are high with Microsoft putting a lot of weight behind both Teams for business and Teams for consumers as the hub for all interactions at work and at home. Given the motivation to win this market and the pieces that the company already has in place, it's hard to imagine that it will take long for them to get this feature up and running.

Sean Riley

Sean Riley has been covering tech professionally for over a decade now. Most of that time was as a freelancer covering varied topics including phones, wearables, tablets, smart home devices, laptops, AR, VR, mobile payments, fintech, and more.  Sean is the resident mobile expert at Laptop Mag, specializing in phones and wearables, you'll find plenty of news, reviews, how-to, and opinion pieces on these subjects from him here. But Laptop Mag has also proven a perfect fit for that broad range of interests with reviews and news on the latest laptops, VR games, and computer accessories along with coverage on everything from NFTs to cybersecurity and more.