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Business Tech Roundup: Microsoft Teams Moves A Step Closer To No Longer Being Part Of Office

By December 10, 2023No Comments

(This column originally appeared in Forbes)


Here are five things in tech that happened this week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 – Microsoft Teams moves a step closer to no longer being part of Office.

Europe’s antitrust investigations involving Microsoft Teams has been an ongoing matter. Now that this issue has caught the attention of “watchdogs” there’s speculation that Microsoft’s consent to the EU in October is one step closer toward Teams being permanently removed from the Microsoft 365 bundle. (Source: TechRadar)

Why this is important for your business:

Not sure if this is a good thing for most companies that use Teams because it will depend on the pricing. I’m betting most of my clients would rather use the entire Office suite rather than just Teams. But if Microsoft does sell Teams on its own, it will be another option for organizations that only want this one tool because they use others.

2 – These are the major US retailers that accept Apple Pay.

Apple Pay – the most popular contactless payment method – is expanding its reach with major retailers. Android Police provided a lengthy list of stores – including restaurants, gas stations, and movie theaters – that have added Apple Pay to their payment system. To see the full list – as well as stores that don’t accept Apple Pay – visit the link. (Source: Android Police)

Why this is important for your business:

Most of the major retailers – and many urban transportation systems – accept Apple Pay and that should be a sign for smaller merchants to get on board. Mobile payments have been slow to become accepted but they’re getting more popular each year and ultimately will replace credit cards.

3 – GoDaddy launched email automation for websites + marketing.

The latest tool from online hosting platform GoDaddy is an automated emailing system to help entrepreneurs with their marketing needs. (Source: MarTech Cube)

Why this is important for your business:

The company says that users can choose from various templates based on the type of content contained in the message – such as welcome emails or appointment confirmations. Each template can be customized with various themes, imagery, or other identifying content that represents the user’s brand. After the template design and content is completed, emails are transferred to a scheduler to be sent at chosen date and time. In keeping with GoDaddy’s mission to “empower customers and entrepreneurs” this automated system will allow users to invest more of their time to keeping their operation running smoothly while staying on top of customer communication.

4 – Four in five HR professionals currently use AI at work, study finds.

Personio – a provider of HR software – surveyed 500 HR decision makers in the UK and Ireland. The results showed that 81 percent of executive-level HR professionals are looking at integrating AI into their operations. Additionally, 78 percent of younger employees – aged 25-34 – currently use an AI tool vs 69 percent of those over 55. As far as AI’s benefits, 59 percent expressed it will increase efficiency and save time. (Source: HR Grapevine)

Why this is important for your business:

HR is one of the primary areas in a company where AI make a significant impact on efficiency and productivity. In 2024 I strongly suggest grilling your HR software providers to find out what tools and features they’re rolling out and then lean into those capabilities.

5 – Google is reportedly pushing the launch of its Gemini AI to 2024.

Reported as its “most ambitious effort yet” Google’s AI creation has received a lot of media coverage leading up to its release. After Bard was released earlier this year, there’s been a lot of chatter about the company’s developments with artificial intelligence – particularly ever since ChatGPT stormed into the public domain. But Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai pulled back on Gemini’s release due to issues with “non-English queries.” The company has described Gemini as having “reasoning capabilities” suggesting that its human-like qualities may be the most advanced to date. (Source: Engadget)

Why this is important for your business:

The tech world has been waiting for this…but we’ll have to wait longer.

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