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Deploying Microsoft Teams with Office 365 ProPlus

Welcome to 2020! I hope everyone is feeling rested and recharged so you can start off 2020 on the right foot! This year Microsoft Teams will continue to expand its reach across all different organizations from small to large in an effort to help increase your productivity. Microsoft is making this even easier to adopt Teams by giving you the ability to deploy and manage Teams the same way that you do for all other Office 365 apps. For those of you on the monthly channel, you already have the ability to deploy Microsoft Teams alongside products like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneDrive. However, if you reside on the semi-annual channel and you’re thinking of adopting Microsoft Teams in your organization now is a perfect time! Starting tomorrow (January 14, 2020) all customers on the semi-annual channel will start receiving Teams through Office 365 ProPlus. Let’s kick things off by showing you when Teams was added to Office 365 ProPlus, and then we’ll discuss how the updates work for Teams so you can start preparing for your organization.

Teams with Office 365 ProPlus Breakdown

Let’s break this down for those of you that have new installations of Office 365 ProPlus versus those of you that have existing installations of Office 365 ProPlus.

New Installations of Office 365 ProPlus

For those of you installing Office 365 ProPlus for the first time, reference this schedule to tell when Teams will be included as part of the new installation:

  • Monthly Channel
    • Version 1902
      • Date: March 4, 2019
  • Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted)
    • Version 1902
      • Date: March 12, 2019
  • Semi-Annual Channel
    • Version 1902
      • Date: July 9. 2019

Existing Installations of Office 365 ProPlus

If you already have an existing Office 365 ProPlus footprint in your organization, reference this schedule to tell when Teams will be included as part of your existing installation:

  • Monthly Channel
    • Version 1906
      • Date: July 9, 2019
  • Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted)
    • Version 1908
      • Date: September 10, 2019
  • Semi-Annual Channel
    • Version 1908
      • Date: January 14. 2020 

What if you don’t want Microsoft Teams to be added to your new or existing installations of Office 365 ProPlus when you update to the latest version? No worries… this is where your friends Group Policy and Office Deployment Tool come into play. For instructions on how to exclude Microsoft Teams from your new and existing installations of Office 365 ProPlus, take a look at the Microsoft documentation here.

Note: Teams does not give admins the ability to deploy updates through any delivery mechanism 

How does Teams update itself?

Just because Teams is included in the installations for Office 365 ProPlus does not mean the update process works the same way as the other Office 365 apps. Teams actually follows its own update process where the Teams desktop client will receive updates every two weeks and the web app will receive updates weekly. Additionally, if one of the updates is critical, Teams will bypass the update schedule and release the update as soon as it’s available.

From an admin perspective, this is quite nice since the Teams client will update itself automatically. As a result, there is no need to schedule pushing out client updates after work hours. Teams will check for updates every few hours, download the update, and then silently install the update once the computer is idle. Users can also manually download updates by selecting the “Check for updates” on the Profile drop-down menu on the top right of the app.

Teams Office 365 ProPlus- Check for Updates

Note: You will need to be signed in for updates to be download

For some administrators, this could raise some concerns due to the fact that Teams will be updating itself without your supervision. However, rest assured the Teams desktop client updates go through rigorous testing and validation via the Microsoft Technology Adoption Program (TAP) prior to its release so your users won’t be receiving a buggy client full of issues. In addition, since Teams operates as a modern online service and is governed by the Modern Lifecycle Policy this means that all of your users will remain on the most up-to-date version of the desktop client so you can ensure there aren’t huge discrepancies between versioning in your environment.

If for some reason a client falls out of date, there is an in-app alert that will be displayed for the end-user if their client is between 1-3 months old. The alert will let them know that a newer version is available. If your client is more than 3 months out of date, you will receive a blocking page. It will give you the options to either update now, reach out to an IT admin, or continue to use Teams on the web. For information on the latest and greatest version releases of the Teams client, you can check out the Message Center or go to Help > What’s new in the bottom left-hand corner of your Teams client (as seen below).

Office 365 ProPlus- What's New

I hope you have found this blog helpful and if you had to take only one important piece of information from this article, it would be that Microsoft Teams will now be available through all new and existing installations of Office 365 ProPlus (starting 01/14/2020).


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Brian Siefferman

Brian is a Technical Consultant for Perficient’s Unified Communications practice focusing primarily on Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams workloads. He has been in this role since December 2017 and has an active presence blogging about all things Teams related. Currently, Brian resides in the suburbs of Chicago and enjoys running, swimming, weight lifting, and playing soccer in his free time.

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