Differentiating where Microsoft Teams ends and where Microsoft Groups begin can be a daunting process. While ultimately compliments of one another, there are notable differences between the two applications that you must be aware of for effective usage.
TWO HALVES OF A WHOLE
As stated, the two services must be seen as collaborators rather than Teams being the successor to Groups. Groups enables functionality and Teams achieves it; Groups give you your Outlook email, shared Outlook calendar, SharePoint site collection, OneNote notebook, and power BI workspace, and Teams allows you to utilize them efficiently.
Teams is aimed at internal collaboration and currently offers no external sharing option, while Groups allows for outside members incorporation. As such, an emphasis on security is greater in Teams, which always requires multi-factor authentication for entry. Because of this privacy, different Teams cannot be searched for, posing the problem of duplicates being created. Inversely, Groups can be found by simply browsing Office 365.
When it comes to unique features, some exist in Groups and others in Teams. Landing pages, the News feature, and Yammer groups are only available to Groups. On the other end, chat, Wiki, Channels, business to Skype integration, and selective enablement and disablement of services/workloads are accessible solely to Teams. Both services offer apps in the Apple, Google, and Microsoft stores.
The most notable difference between the two is the chat feature in Teams. This orients Teams as the communicative side of the pairing, and the best option for continual commutations between members.
Teams and Groups isn’t oranges to apples but yin to yang, two halves forming the full picture; Groups is how you share your resources, and Teams is how you talk about what’s being shared.