Microsoft Teams: The Development Platform

November 21, 2018

We are certainly in an exciting time where Microsoft Teams is growing up and has become an amazing development platform.  Teams Applications can come in many different pieces: Tabs, Bots, Connectors, Messaging Extensions, Feed Integration and Outgoing Web Hooks.  It’s this extensibility that allows you to customize and extend the Microsoft Teams tool to meet your business needs.  Either through customized Line of Business (LOB) Applications or maybe you want to create an application that appears in the Teams Store at large for recurring revenue, Teams gives you lots of options.

So Why Now?

I think there are a few reasons why now is the best time to look at building apps on Teams.

First, the end-user base is growing all the time.  Microsoft told us at Ignite that it’s the fastest growing application they have ever created with well over 135 active Office 365 Users.  And based on what I’ve seen in the marketplace organizations are deploying Teams to production user everyday.  For non-telephony deployments, Teams is a quick and easy fit.  For those with complex telephone and Skype for Business, Microsoft is making massive investments to make both technologies work side-by-side.  There is no organization that Teams doesn’t fit in.

Second, Microsoft has gotten better with documentation and go-to-market assistance.  For those who are not developers, you can check out both the documentation site and sample code and much of it makes sense to the non-developer.

Third, Microsoft is committed to making sure the developer community has the tools it needs.  If you have been following along you will see massive changes to the Graph API, more tools in the SDK and of course their commitment to open source is absolutely crazy.  This is not the old Microsoft.

How Will I Use It?

I’m not a developer by trade and have kind of fallen into a role where much of my time is spent in Visual Studio during the day.  And if you have been following my blog for years, you will know that the is a tool that was created to help the community.  So it seems like now is the best time to modernize the skypevalidator to a every IT Admin’s tool in Microsoft Teams.

So in the coming months you will see opportunities to play with Validator in Teams.  I will blog my experience with modernizing the application and share how you can take your existing app and make it Teams friendly.  Here is a quick sneak peak of that work:

What Else?

If you are not paying attention to Teams and the development aspects of it you are missing you.  The Teams platform will allow you to bring together apps/tools/services that are used everyday in a common interface.  Make sure to watch the Teams Dev Blog for all sorts of information.



Written by Richard Richard is an Office Apps & Services MVP (Teams / Skype) who lives in Minneapolis, MN. Microsoft Certified Solutions Master (MCSM) and MCSM Instructor - when those were a thing long ago. When not writing code, breaking teams - debate coach and avid golfer.
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