Nowadays, virtual teams rule the world. Physical presence in the office has become obsolete and the crucial tool for communication between team members is no longer email — it’s team chat apps!
Let’s go over the main features that make team chat apps trusty companions in the virtual workspace and see what makes them so useful.
What are the characteristics of the best team chat apps?
What made email so spectacular once upon a time was its accessibility and ease with which one could simply type out a message and have the recipient read it in a matter of minutes.
As technology improved, so did the methods of communication — and, with them came neat little features that made everyone’s lives easier.
When it comes to team chat apps and their key features, we’d like to single out:
- Collaboration features — multimedia file sharing with coworkers and task assignments.
- Pricing plans — use of extensions, tools, and features that come with pro plans, such as customizable effects, larger cloud storage, and advanced collaboration options.
- Third-party integrations — use of Google Workspace and other apps within the team chat app for easier collaboration.
- Search options — access to advanced search and messaging options with unlimited storage.
- Hosting options — self-hosting options.
A list of the 10 best team chat apps
There are many tools that are considered to be efficient and applicable in the business sphere.
So we decided to list them and give you an overview of the top 10 team chat applications you can use for business:
- Microsoft Teams
- Google Chat
Pumble — for organized team collaboration
🔹 What is Pumble?
Pumble offers remote teams a free team chat experience with a supreme and structured platform for messaging and file-sharing.
In terms of communication types, Pumble offers:
- Private 1-on-1 or group conversations (DMs),
- Private and public channel discussions, and
- Replying in threads.
🔹 Pumble’s highlight features:
Aside from offering its users unlimited chat history, all users within the workspace will have access to an unlimited number of channels and up to 10 GB of free storage space.
Slack — for large-sized businesses
🔹 What is Slack?
Thanks to its versatile arsenal of features, Slack manages to bring integration to a different level.
It lets the users:
- Collaborate virtually,
- Maintain communication through the pipeline effortlessly, and
- Share files easily since the app offers 10 GB of file storage per member in the Pro plan.
🔹 Slack’s highlight features:
Slack Connect is a feature that lets you work with other firms and businesses with the help of enterprise-grade security and screen-sharing options.
Discord — for an outstanding audio experience
🔹 What is Discord?
Discord is an advanced collaboration team chat app — preferred by gamers — with an outstanding audio software that has driven firms to try and design similar solutions. Nowadays, it’s used by various virtual teams and not just gaming communities.
Aside from the audio software, Discord also offers:
- Direct communication through DMs,
- Text (general) channels,
- Screen-sharing options,
- Easy-to-navigate display, and
- In-channel bots that connect to other apps.
Also, Discord Nitro offers symbolic upgrades, such as:
- Customizable emojis,
- Avatars, and
- Larger file uploads.
🔹 Discord’s highlight features:
Users that struggle with slow internet connections can set up low-quality, low-bitrate channels that go as low as 8 KBP/S, for an improved experience.
Microsoft Teams — for business collaboration
🔹 What is Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams is a part of the Microsoft 365 package that includes Microsoft Office, Skype for Business, and many others.
This app allows you to communicate with your team members via:
- Direct messages, and
- Video conference calls.
Organic third-party integrations allow the users harmonious and hassle-free collaboration in real time.
🔹 Microsoft Teams’ highlight features:
Spotlight — a highlight screen-sharing feature that lets you pin someone’s video in the middle of a conference meeting.
Chanty — for software development firms
🔹 What is Chanty?
Most virtual teams often use both project management tools and team chat apps. However, Chanty excels in bringing both onto a single platform.
Namely, Chanty allows its users to:
- Work together,
- Integrate various tools — such as YouTube and social media platforms,
- Assign tasks to each other, and
- Name roles for every member.
Furthermore, unlimited messaging is available in the free plan, but you’ll gain access to more advanced features in the premium plans.
🔹 Chanty’s highlight features:
Chanty allows its users to share snippets of code and edit them inside the app.
Google Chat — for simplified communication
🔹 What is Google Chat?
Google Chat is a simple team chatting application that anyone can use without any prior knowledge. It also incorporates many optimized features that you’ll see in other chatting apps.
Such features are:
- Separate discussion channels,
- Thread replies,
- Third-party integrations, and
- Advanced search engine powered by Google.
Google Chat further allows the users to work on well-known, popular platforms, such as:
- Docs, and even
🔹 Google Chat’s highlight features:
Internal and third-party integrations with other tools make Google Chat a beneficial app for large and small businesses.
Ryver — for small teams
🔹 What is Ryver?
Similar to Chanty, the team chat app Ryver acts as a 2-in-1 software — it lets you effortlessly message your coworkers and perform task management operations.
Its management features render software like Trello obsolete. And, its audio and video calls work like a charm.
It’s not free to use, but it’s relatively affordable and offers a simplified log-in process, alongside other practical features.
🔹 Ryver’s highlight features:
Full functionality across all platforms — except for Linux.
Twist — for deep work
🔹 What is Twist?
Twist is a chatting and collaboration tool that focuses on “deep work engagement” — i.e. creating an environment that allows users to be more efficient by eliminating distractions.
This is achieved by eliminating features such as push notifications and status updates.
By using Twist, users are practically relieved of the modern stress that comes from the nagging pressure of deadlines and constant availability.
🔹 Twist’s highlight features:
To ensure deep work ethics, Twist doesn’t have presence indicators or ways to monitor it.
Flock — for clutter-free environments
🔹 What is Flock?
Aside from its messaging software, Flock users can create polls within a certain channel or even take notes with a built-in feature. There is no need to use multiple tools at work and Flock even offers 20 GB of file storage, which is more than you get with Google Drive’s free plan.
The advanced search engine — ASE — in the Enterprise plan lets you search the application for:
- Individual posts,
- Files, and
- Keywords that were shared in a specific channel.
🔹 Flock’s highlight features:
Similar to many popular messaging apps like Messenger or WhatsApp, Flock also lets its users send voice messages.
Rocket.Chat — for complete optimization
🔹 What is Rocket.Chat?
Rocket.Chat is an open-source messaging application that lets teams customize the code, and consequently, change the design of the app.
Furthermore, the users are free to host the application on their own servers thanks to the self-hosting capabilities of Rocket.Chat.
🔹 Rocket.Chat’s highlight features:
Rocket.Chat allows integration with popular third-party apps and lets you create your own security measures thanks to the self-hosting options.
This is just a summary of an article previously published on the Clockify blog.
To learn more about the best team chat apps for remote businesses, we recommend reading the full article: