Microsoft Teams is adding a new feature that most users probably didn’t know they wanted: Casual games. Starting today, Teams enterprise and education customers can now play Solitaire, Minesweeper, and other casual games in Microsoft Teams.
“Playing games with coworkers has a powerful ability to foster relationships and collaboration. Although some may consider games at work a distraction, the benefits are plentiful,” explained Nicole Herskowitz, VP of Microsoft Teams.
To prove her point, the exec mentioned a study by Brigham Young University showing that teams playing casual games together were 20% more productive than other teams participating in more traditional team-building activities. Microsoft’s selection of casual games can be played during Teams meetings, with some games like Wordament supporting up to 250 players.
All these games will be accessible via a new Games for Work pilot app in Teams. Once the app has been enabled by IT pros, users will be able to access games in Teams meetings on desktop and mobile.
Even though Microsoft Teams has been enjoying a lot of momentum in this new hybrid work era, it’s safe to say that many users are also starting to see the bloat. The same thing could be said for the company’s Edge browser, which now has Solitaire and other casual games built in.
Microsoft says that feedback from Teams users on this Games for Work pilot app will “influence the casual game roadmap in Microsoft Teams.” Do you believe in the power of games for bringing teams together? Sound off in the comments below.