When it comes to a start-up company like Slack, there is just simply no way they can compete with a tech behemoth like Microsoft. Yes, they may have some innovative software, a great product and a capable team. But with far more resources and income, the big tech companies can always push out a stronger product, quicker and with a lot more money to throw at it.
And so to help regain some of the edge the company had initially on Microsoft before it started making significant progress with its Micorsoft Teams product, Slack is teaming up with Amazon to take on their big rival. Not only has the company announced that Amazon will be using Slack for its inter-personal team communications, making the 840 000-employee company by far its biggest customer, but they have also announced the use of Amazon’s Chime technology for video calling.
Once integrated into Slack, this will a better video conferincing option for customers (as reported in The Verge).
Chime might not be too well known outside of Amazon, but it does offer many of the same features that Teams and Zoom already offer. Voice and Video is easily the worst part about Slack communication and using Amazon’s technology should help them close this gap. Along with the ability to scale up using AWS data centres, which Slack has been running on since inception.
Slack and Amazon are also promising better product integration and interoperability for features like AWS Chatbot, a service that pushes out Slack channel alerts for AWS instances. In the coming months, Slack and AWS will improve its Amazon AppFlow integration to support bi-directional transfer of data between AWS services and Slack channels.
It will be interesting to see how this partnership plays out and possibly lures more organisations towards Slack over Microsoft teams, which does integrate into the Microsoft Office Suite a little better and form part of the Office 365 subscription. It will be a challenge, but one that they can definitely overcome by integrating so many of their features.
It’s also a collaboration that I’m surprised hasn’t led to an acquisition of sorts by Amazon, though perhaps that may come in the future.
Last Updated: June 5, 2020