Instant Messaging or IM is the real time exchange of text messages using a software application.  Many IM apps today also include collaboration features that allow you to share links, media (video, images, audio) and files, make voice and video calls, conduct voice and video online meetings as will as have presence which is the ability to see if the person you are contacting is available.  

MSU has campus-wide licenses for these IM applications.

Cisco Webex Teams* Cisco spark logo. | Microsoft Teams Microsoft Teams logo| Skype for Business Skype for Business logo

*previously known as Spark

Download Apps

Cisco Webex Teams, Microsoft Teams, and Skype for Business all have apps for desktop and mobile devices in addition to being available via the web. Use the links below to download desktop apps on your computers. Mobile apps available through the Apps store, Google play, etc.

Web Access

Access to the web/online version of apps:

Webex Teams  -  https://teams.webex.com/signin

Microsoft Teams -  https://login.microsoftonline.com/   - Once logged in, click on the Teams tile.

Skype for Business -  https://outlook.com/owa.montana.edu - Once logged in Outlook will open. To access Skype, click on the Skype icon located in the top-right corner of the window.

Help Resources

Use the links below to learn more about all of the features mentioned in the chart below.

IM Feature Comparison Chart

 A colored dot in the app's column indicates that it has the feature identified in that row.

 Feature Description  Cisco Spark blue,green gray, light blue asterisk-like logo
Webex Teams
Microsoft Teams purple T icon.
Microsoft Teams
Blue "S" logo image for Skype for Business
Skype**
Messaging (chat):
one-to-one
team
Message in real time with an individual - one-to-one and/or with a group of individuals.   Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature.

 

Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.

 Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Presence Ability to see who is currently available on the app. Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature. Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Calling
(voice & video)
Make or receive one-on-one or group calls. Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Meetings
(voice & video)
Start or join meetings from the app with one or a group of people. Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Schedule a meeting  Schedule a meeting for the app from inside the app.  Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  
Schedule a meeting from Outlook Schedule a meeting for the app from Outlook. Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature.   Purple bullet to indicate Microsoft Teams includes this feature Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
File sharing Share files during a message, meeting or call. 

SECURITY NOTE:  
Always refer to the Data Storage Security Grid  to ensure that the files you are uploading are appropriate to share/store in Spark & Office 365 Teams.  It is recommended that you share via Box or One Drive.  See Box Integrations for more info.
Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Edit files Edit a file at the same time.   Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  
Screen sharing Share computer screen during a meeting or call Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature. Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.  Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Whiteboarding Create a new whiteboard or open an existing one.  Green round circle indicating that Spark has this feature.  Purple bullet to indicate that Microsoft Teams supports this featureSee White Board in a Teams Meeting for details. In preview only. Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Recording A meeting or call can be recorded.   Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature. Blue bullet indicating that Skype shares this feature.
Integrations w/other apps, tools, services  Has ability to integrate with other apps, tools or services - 

See Box Integrations to learn how to integrate Spark and Teams with Box.
green bullet imageSee Power Pack  to download bulk task tools for Webex Teams.

See Cisco Webex App Hub - for other available integrations.
Purple filled bullet/circle indicating that Teams has this feature.See Apps &  Services for details.  
Other Productivity Features
Microsoft Teams        
Teams  Teams are collections of people, content, and tools that center around different projects and jobs within an organization. ...team members can have conversations and share files, notes, and more all in one place.      
Channels  Channels are used to keep a team's conversations organized.  Teams can create and dedicate channels for a specific topic, project, etc.        
 Webex Teams          
Teams "Teams can be used to organize spaces by placing them under a common theme. Learn how to create a team in Webex Teams.      
Spaces

"...all your work takes place within spaces where you can send messages, make calls, have video meetings, share files, and whiteboard." Learn more about how you can use Spaces to get work done in Webex Teams.

     

**refers to Skype for Business