Microsoft is planning to introduce a new version of Teams that will eventually replace the existing desktop apps on lower-end devices. This new “Microsoft Teams Alpha” app was spotted by the reliable Microsoft leaker “WalkingCat” over the weekend and is not yet easily accessible to everyone.
While the leaked app isn’t functional without a full internal Microsoft account, Twitter user @jessejarvi gave us our first look at what the new Teams desktop app will look like, and it looks different. The new client is codenamed Maglev, and it’s based on the Teams Web app that can currently be accessed from a web browser.
Microsoft Teams Alpha https://t.co/Soda2C6VL2
— Tero Alhonen (@teroalhonen) March 1, 2021
According to the Twitter user, the Microsoft Teams Alpha should also offer quicker loading and significant performance enhancements over the existing desktop app for Windows and Mac, which is built on the Electron platform. This new experience has been designed to optimize the resource usage of Teams on the desktop, especially on low-end devices. This means that users will be able to download, install and run it quickly and easily.
The Microsoft Teams Alpha app is still a work-in-progress, with no current time frame for when it would be available for everyone. In the meantime, the company is working to address performance issues in the existing Teams desktop client, and it has promised to deliver substantial improvements for Windows and Mac users.
In addition to this new Teams desktop app, the company is also expected to launch a new variant of its new “One Outlook” app in 2022. Microsoft says that this Outlook client will also replace the default Mail and Calendar apps on Windows 10.