What are business communication platforms and how do they work – Explained

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Published: July 20, 2020 7:20 AM

Instead of allowing everything on mail, these platforms allow companies to create groups and communicate in real-time, while also sharing files and messages over the service.

Google, which has its suite of products, does not wish to lose out in the race.Google, which has its suite of products, does not wish to lose out in the race.

On Thursday, Google announced that it shall be moving towards an all in one productivity service. The Gmail app, which earlier had features of chat, would now incorporate its chat, video conferencing and other solutions. There is a reason for Google trying to integrate all its services in one. Microsoft Teams and Slack have been gaining in popularity as business apps that allow all in one functionality. Google, which has its suite of products, does not wish to lose out in the race.

What are business communication platforms?
Business communication platforms are all in one services that help companies better their workflow. Instead of allowing everything on mail, these platforms allow companies to create groups and communicate in real-time, while also sharing files and messages over the service. In some cases, they can also work as collaboration tools to help employees work on the same panel together.

How do they work?
The idea is simple, they use email id to connect to the service, and once you are logged in, made part of a group or team, everyone can share messages or work on projects. This way, you can be part of multiple teams and check on work progress. The platforms, in addition, allow incorporation of apps, so that a user does not have to leave the ecosystem. So, a Google drive can integrate with a Slack and Zoom can also be integrated with service. There are reminder services to help keep track of tasks. And, users can also use video-calling in certain instances. In the case of Microsoft Teams, you can share and edit files on Microsoft products.

Are these services paid?

Most of these services, be it Slack or Teams, work on a freemium model. Slack allows certain features on its services for free and limits the amount of files you can upload. Teams does the same. Although these were never high priced products, BCPs are now looking to bundle services to make them even more attractive.

What is Google trying to do now?
Google is trying to emulate the success of Microsoft to better its products. Despite having a mail, chat, video-calling and office suits, the company never decided to integrate these services. But now as more businesses adopt online systems, Google is changing how Gmail looks and integrating all its products in one. So, Gmail will look very different in the coming months.

What else can we expect?
Once Google starts innovating and improving its services, others would need to do the same, so Slack may be looking at making its video calling or conferencing service more visible. Microsoft has already announced many AI innovations to its Teams product.

Techsplained @FE features weekly on Mondays. Mail your queries at ishaan.gera@expressindia.com

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