Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has announced a significant shift in its sales strategy by offering its chat and video application, Teams, as a standalone product separate from its Office suite on a global scale.

This decision, announced on Monday, comes six months after the tech giant started selling the two products separately within the European Union and Switzerland to avoid potential EU antitrust penalties.

The move addresses ongoing investigations by the European Commission into Microsoft's practice of bundling Office and Teams together.

The inquiry was sparked by a complaint from Slack, a workspace messaging app owned by Salesforce, back in 2020.

Microsoft integrated Teams into its Office 365 package in 2017 at no additional cost, effectively phasing out Skype for Business.

Competitors have argued that Microsoft's bundling strategy gave it an unfair advantage in the market.

By offering Teams and Office as separate entities in the EU and Switzerland since August 31 last year, Microsoft has now extended this unbundling approach worldwide.

A spokesperson from Microsoft stated, "To ensure clarity for our customers, we are extending the steps we took last year to unbundle Teams from M365 and O365 in the European Economic Area and Switzerland to customers globally."

This strategic pivot is also a response to feedback from the European Commission, aiming to give multinational companies more flexibility in standardizing their purchases across different geographies.

Meanwhile, Microsoft has introduced a new lineup of commercial Microsoft 365 and Office 365 suites without Teams for regions outside the EEA and Switzerland, alongside a new standalone Teams offering for Enterprise customers in those areas.

Starting from April 1, Microsoft customers will have the option to continue with their current licensing arrangements, renew, update, or switch to the new offerings.