At a very high-level, Microsoft Teams and Zoom both overlap and compete in the way that they offer a set of services for video conferencing (including room systems) and UC telephony. Drilling deeper into the more nuanced features, interfaces and ease of use as well as integrations is how you can evaluate trade-offs and make the best decisions as to which platform is the effective fit for your organization.
Microsoft Teams and Zoom both provide web conferencing features (including breakout rooms) but also have unique features that set them apart. Microsoft Teams includes a robust chat service that allows users to communicate quickly without setting up a conference. Syncing with Microsoft 365 also makes collaboration easy by allowing file sharing and calendar support. Microsoft’s feature set is focused around perfecting internal communication. Zoom is focused on video and audio conferencing. Zoom makes for easy conferencing even with users that are not part of the company account. Zoom also provides features such as multiple screen sharing to support web-based presentations. Additionally, Zoom web conferences boast high-quality video and audio. Either solution is now showing up to 49 call participants (7x7 grid), which is especially important in the educational sector with the recent increase in home schooling requirements.
Interface and ease of use
The user interface and experience are truly where Zoom excels in the Microsoft Teams vs. Zoom debate. Zoom users all rave over its simple interface and the ability to get end-users up and running with little to no training or IT support. Microsoft Teams poses a bigger challenge as users need to get up to speed on how to interact in different channels and Teams, incorporate file sharing, and use all the other Microsoft 365 applications baked into Teams. Although the full set of work stream collaboration functionality built into Teams clearly allows it to offer a broader surface area of usage and scenarios (and hence a better value) than Zoom, this precise value is also in some ways its Achilles heel with respect to onboarding.
As parts of the Zoom vs. Teams battleground threaten to become increasingly commoditized, one area of unique differentiation is the “room systems” installed in an organization. A room system can range from a simple huddle room configuration all the way up to a deluxe executive conference room. While both offer device management, touch enhancements, companion experiences with mobile, and dual-screen rooms support, Zoom has the added benefit of people counting, and Teams has proximity detection. Another difference between Zoom vs. Microsoft Teams is that Zoom certifies both integrators and hardware providers while Teams only certifies the hardware solutions.
Integrations have rapidly become a crucial concern for all collaboration platforms. The good news is that both Zoom and Microsoft have a lot of integrations to tap into. Microsoft Teams’ biggest win is its close, baked-in integration of Microsoft 365 apps, and beyond that, there are over 70 integrations for Microsoft Teams that include options for ticket management, surveys, weather, news, etc. In Microsoft’s case, integrations are typically to bring app data into its own platform. On the flip side, Zoom is often added as an integration to other platforms. A great example of this is how Zoom and Slack work together. In addition to the Slack integration, Zoom has over 100 integrations, including an integration with Microsoft 365.