Is the New Microsoft Teams Premium Worth the Upgrade?

Microsoft Teams Premium

Written by Jackie Bilodeau

I am the Communications Director for CGNET, having returned to CGNET in 2018 after a 10-year stint in the 1990's. I enjoy hiking, music, dance, photography, writing and travel. Read more about my work at CGNET here.

February 16, 2023

According to Microsoft, the new Teams Premium package takes the standard Teams offering to a new level, making “every meeting from one-on-ones to large meetings more personalized, intelligent, and secure”. Introduced last October, Teams Premium is now generally available to everyone for a monthly subscription price, based on number of users. So, is the upgrade to this new Premium version worth it for your organization? Let’s take a look at what it includes.

Personalize your meetings

With new AI-based meeting guides, you can quickly set up meetings that suit your needs. Customized and managed by IT, you can choose the type of meeting you would like to have – such as a brainstorm session with a group, or a one-on-one discussion with someone – and the meeting guide automatically sets it up for you. Essentially, meeting guides are a clever time-saving addition to Teams.

AI makes your meetings “smarter”

Microsoft has also incorporated the power of AI to save you time and improve both your focus and productivity. With a feature they call intelligent recap, the new upgraded version of Teams utilizes OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 model to generate meeting notes and highlights, even if you weren’t present in a meeting. With intelligent recap, you will feel like you have a virtual assistant attending every meeting for you.  At the end of a meeting, this feature creates a “smart” recording with automatically generated chapters and insights. It will tell you when your name was mentioned, when a screen was shared, or when you left a meeting early.  This way you can get quickly caught up. (Note that while most of the intelligent recap features are already available today in Teams Premium, some won’t arrive until next quarter.)

Advanced meeting protections

Teams Premium includes a number of safeguards for better meeting security and confidentiality.  Examples include watermarking video, labeling sensitive content, and the ability to restrict users from recording meetings or copying text from the meeting chat. Microsoft says these features can help deter leaks and keep any confidential meeting content private.

Some standard Teams features moving to Premium-only

If the features above don’t convince you that you need the new version, Microsoft admitted that some features we’ve been able to use with our standard licenses will now be available only to those with the Premium license. This includes live translated captions, custom organization Together Mode scenes, timeline markers in Teams meeting recordings, and some virtual appointments features. If any of those features are important to your organization, you may want to consider the upgraded license. Currently, Microsoft is offering Premium licenses at an introductory price of $7 per month per user. After June 30th the standard rate of $10 per user per month becomes the norm. To see a comprehensive comparison between Premium and standard Teams features, check out this page.

Written by Jackie Bilodeau

I am the Communications Director for CGNET, having returned to CGNET in 2018 after a 10-year stint in the 1990's. I enjoy hiking, music, dance, photography, writing and travel. Read more about my work at CGNET here.

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