***EDIT: It was a bug which is fixed!*** Teams free is actually only free for 4 months. I feel a bit betrayed. Or did I get wrong information?

Hi all,

I started to use "Teams free" for our small company (13 users) in January, assuming, that it is actually free without time limit, as stated on this microsoft product page: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-teams/free. I also add some screen shots that led me to that assumption.

Nevertheless, I got an email stating, that my test version (Microsoft Teams free) will be deactivated. I was able to extend the test version for another 30 days, but it will expire then. There doesn't seem to be a way around it, unless spending money.

According to a Support Engineer (with whom I had a couple of conversations within a related support case) confirmed, that the information on the linked site above is outdated and that the product "Teams free" is currently only available as test version, so will only be working for a limited time.

Now I call this false advertising:

The info given on the official Microsoft site linked above made me think, I could get the service for free without pre-defined time limit. Now I would need to spend money to continue using the service. 

I would like to know: Am I mistaken? Was there an obvious hint this product (Teams free) is only a test version expiring after 4 months? Is there (to the contrary of the support engineer's info) a way to continue to use Teams free with the environment (organisation, Teams, channels, uploaded files etc.) we created? Or at least is it possible to create a fresh environment, that is for free without time limitation (so not just a test version), as the linked site states?

EDIT: The behaviour described above was due to a bug, that is supposedly fixed by now and completely rolled in week 19. Thank you, Sam!

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Teams Free is still very much Free! It does look like we might need to cleanup some documentation as somehow something went amiss there when we made these changes. The scenario is - if we have 20 tenants that create a Freemium tenant today and only 10 of them are in actual use (say, test tenants as an example), then we still let those 10 tenants live on indefinitely. 

However, the new model is essentially making sure folks use the product at some extent within the duration. I'll make sure we update our docs and keep this up to date. 

Sam Cosby | Teams Engineering PM

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Oh now I understand (I guess)! this also explains the second mail I got, stating, that I need to log in to be able to continue using the product.

Yet, it does not explain, why I got the first mail, stating, that it will be deactivated if I don't upgrade, nor why I got the same messages a second (and even a third) time, although I and my 10 colleagues logged in literally every working day to teams. So may it be, that the "log in detection" does somehow not work? We use Teams every day, still in the admin center the expiration date is fixed. I am pretty sure my account would have been deactivated by now, if I did not have manually extended it by 30 days. The system also does not allow a second extension as it seems.

Mail 1 (text google translated from German, modified), received on March 27th:

Your trial version is expiring - purhase a subscription to continue using our products.  You have 1 trial version that will expire. You can use the Microsoft 365 

admin center to purchase a subscription to continue using your product. 

 Buy now> [link]

  If you don't do so by Monday, April 26, 2021, your trial version data will be available to all users in your organization for approximately 30 days. Then the 

subscription status changes to "Deactivated" and only administrators have access to the test version data for a further 90 days. After that your trial version will 

be deleted permanently. 

 Additional Information:      

Extent trial version [link]

Cancel trial version [link]

Your trial versions  that will expire: 

product

MICROSOFT TEAMS (FREE) 

Number of licences

500,000 

start date

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Mail 2 (text google translated from German, modified), received on March 27th (about 5 hours after the first one):

Sign in to continue using Microsoft Teams

We noticed that you haven't been using Microsoft Teams lately. A member of your school or organization must sign in to Teams at least every 90 days in 

order to continue using the service. Otherwise you will no longer have access to Microsoft Teams from Monday, April 26, 2021.

A member of your school or organization must sign in to Teams at least every 90 days in order to continue using the service.

These 2 mails I received again on April 19th although I definitely logged in many times during that time (with different accounts, under them also the global "onmicrosoft" admin, which is not so easy to trace down... which account is supposed to do the trick? The one setting up Teams free?). And I received them a third time after I extended the trial manually (with the expiration date shifted by 30 days accordingly). Always both mails reached me around 3-5 hours apart from each other.

Could you please double check if the mechanism extending the licence is working as expected? If you want, I am happy to work with you... If you need some information from my account, please feel free to ask, I am happy to share.

Many thanks again for taking the time to actually listen/read and dig a bit deeper. I had contact to many support people regarding this issue and yesterday one Microsoft support agent forwarded my request to 3 (!) external Microsoft partners... Who of course couldn't help me with a free service...

You are the first Microsoft employee who is actually recognizing and helping to solve the issue, so kudos to you!


EDIT:

check also these links: 
https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/msteams/forum/all/teams/5b2f2982-7218-4952-8bf9-1639abf96774 

https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/msteams/forum/all/microsoft-teams-free-trial-ending/7f9a7873-a1f0-4400-830b-f56ba74c366f

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-teams/free-vs-trial-confusion/m-p/2234846/highlight/true


There are apparently more and more users popping up with this issue... Did you change the model January 2021? 

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Yep - this is precisely the bug:

"Yet, it does not explain, why I got the first mail, stating, that it will be deactivated if I don't upgrade, nor why I got the same messages a second (and even a third) time, although I and my 10 colleagues logged in literally every working day to teams. So may it be, that the "log in detection" does somehow not work?"

It was a bug on the licensing side, which we resolved after finding this out. Thanks so much for reporting this!

Sam Cosby | Teams Engineering PM

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That sounds great indeed! The thing that worries me is that in my Admin center it still says it will expire on May 27th (see below) 

Can you confirm this is normal? When should i see an updated expiration date? 

(sorry for being that annoying, I simply cannot believe, that the issue is solved that quickly after dealing with it solid 5-6 working days, please forgive me.) 

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No worries - this is a good question. I can confirm the bug is fixed but possibly not checked in.. Let me double-check that and connect back with you. 

One thing to make note of - I can confirm that this rolled out on 1/18/2021 - but since most wouldn't have seen it or noticed anything until 3/18, and after that, emails weren't supposed to go out to expected tenants that are not in use until 5/18 at the earliest with no activity.. So that's why we've actually seen this pop up around that time and more/less coming up more recently. 

Sam Cosby | Teams Engineering PM

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Hi Sam,

I just wanted to check back asking if you got any news regarding the question whether it is normal that I still see the expiring date "may, 27th", although I am logged in right now... shouldn't it be August 3rd now? When should I expect the date to change?

Cheers

Ingo

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Hey there, apologies on the delayed response. I just spoke with the lead dev manager around this and confirmed that the bug fix is currently releasing and that should be assuming latest fully released by end of next week. That means that the 'expiration date' won't fully update to a new date/time until that's released so assume that to be at least until next Friday and hope for it to be released sooner (I'll comment on when it is, etc). 

Moving forward, once that fix is into production, you should see that number change based on usage and shouldn't need to worry unless there's a significant amount of time that the free tenant goes without use. 

Hope that helps clear things up. Everyone should be good for those who are using the client and shouldn't have a worry. 

Sam Cosby | Teams Engineering PM

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Just wanted to call out that I've made two 'formal' discussion posts around this issue now so we can redirect any comments there as we progress through this moving forward. Thank you again for bringing up this feedback!

Accidental Freemium deletion email sent out - explanation and FAQs - Microsoft Community

Accidental Freemium deletion email sent out - explanation and FAQs - Microsoft Tech Community

Sam Cosby | Teams Engineering PM

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Hi Sam, still my admin center announces expiration of my account on May, 27th, which ist this thursday. I am currently logged in, as are a couple of my colleagues. Can you please confirm this is the normal behavior and my teams will work after that date as it is expected to be? 

Cheers

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Last updated May 25, 2021 Views 367 Applies to: