In just over two years of existence, messaging app Slack has become an indispensable communication tool for many work teams, especially of the creative variety.
Now, Microsoft—which was rumored to be interested in purchasing Slack at one point—is developing its own Slack-like collaboration tool under the Skype platform, according to Microsoft PowerUser.
Like Slack, Skype Teams will allow users to chat in groups on Channels as well as direct-message each other, sources told MPU. Unlike Slack, the app will also offer Facebook-like threaded conversations, in which it’s easy to hit reply and add a comment.
While Slack has the lead in this niche, Skype Teams would bring other advantages to the table: Skype’s tried and tested video chat technology, and seamless integration with Microsoft Office.
The developers also seem to be aware that people want to message about things other than work, so they’ve included a ‘Fun Picker’ for spicing up messages with gifs, emojis and memes.
Microsoft has yet to officially confirm the existence of Skype Teams, but this appears to be a very detailed leak, complete with screen shots. The intrepid folks at WinBeta also dug up this Skype Teams log-in page on Microsoft’s site, presumably for users who are previewing the service.