Free vs Trial - confusion

Occasional Contributor

Hi, I signed up for Teams Free a couple of months ago, and now I got an email saying my trial is ending. Trial!? What!?!?
Also, when I go to the subscription page, I can clearly see that there is a FREE version of Teams, which I am apparently using.

Why am I getting these mails?
Will I lose Teams if I don't get a subscription?
Am I always going to get these 'reminder' emails if I can stay on Teams Free(if that's possible)? 
I've attached a screenshot to illustrate the issue - the shot-across-the-bow email is on the left and the subscriptions page is on the right.






20 Replies
Hello, it sounds as if you initially signed up for a trial and not Teams free? (see the "Note" part).

Perhaps you better off reaching out to the official support, look at the bottom of the below link.

Thank you for your response. None of those applied or helped I'm afraid.
The first screen shot clearly shows I'm on the FREE version, and notably with no expiry date, but is at the same time saying 'the trial' will end. I would surmise that this is some kind of logic error in MS's auto-email system for actual trial users, or was engineered accidentally-on-purpose this way to trick/scare Free users into a subscription. Unfortunately, this 'dirty work' is common practice these days.
On balance, reviewing this again, I would say I don't have anything to worry about as I suspect this is trick/scare tactics. It certainly scared me into creating this post.

OK. I would as previously mentioned reach out to the official support anyway. Just to be sure.

@ChristianBergstrom Hi there.
I have the same issue and so do a couple of others apparently ( and, the first link is my post). I had some Support Cases open regarding this topic and a handful of support agents/embassadors/engineers I had contact with confirmed basically the picture I gathered by now: Currently (since when I don't know) there is no Teams free that won't expire after a certain period. (4 months for me.) Teams free is apparently meant as an evaluation/trial subscription. Unfortunately the product page does not state that. I find that highly misleading.

However it is possible to extend the trial by 30 days after entering payment information... But that's it apparently.

This is very disappointing.


Can you confirm though that the product "Teams free" was once without preset time limit?


Hello, sorry to hear about all the confusing information you've received. Especially if that has been provided by the official support. Your Teams free account will not expire. There are other TRIALS associated with other type of subscriptions that do expire though.



This seems to be incorrect. My subscription will expire/be deactivated on may, 27th (see screen shot attached). I registered for Teams free, but nevertheless it gave me a test version ("Testversion", "(kostenlos)" translates to "free") which expires after 3 months (plus 30 days extension). Do you have a hint how I get proper Teams free? All the Microsoft support people I talked to (about 6 different persons, different departments) just confirmed what I wrote above.

@ChristianBergstrom Yes, I did. See also the posts by other users in the 2 links I provided in my first post. I am not the only one. Also I assume for @cambob it's the same. But I would be happy to be proven wrong :) I really would love to continue using Teams free.


EDIT: I attach 2 replies from Microsoft Support people confirming the problem (without offering a proper solution)

I tried to reproduce what you're seeing in the Admin center signing in with my own Teams free org. account and my Free org. has no expiration date in the portal, it's just blank there.

Any chance you followed this - > "If you're signed in to a Microsoft 365 work or school account, you won't be able to sign up for Teams free. If you have Azure Active directory and are not licensed for Teams, you may be able to initiate the Microsoft Teams Exploratory experience. Go to Get Teams for free and choose the Sign up for free button to see if you're eligible."

Note the wording, you sign up for free, but you don't sign up for Teams free.

I can only assume you initiated the Teams Exploratory experience

Hope it helps in any way.
I can only tell you I started the process here: and performed quite exactly the steps described in your post above my last one and ended up with this trial version. I did not register for Office 365 trial nor did I initiated Exploratory experience (for which anyway I am quite sure I don't fulfill all criteria described here: )

What do you think I should ask the Microsoft support? What would you suggest how I can start a proper Teams free? Or should it even be possible to migrate my organisation to a proper free account?
It's pretty easy to determine if you have a full trial or using Teams free as you don't have the Teams admin center (TAC) when signing up for Teams free. So, can you enter here?

Don't think you can migrate a trial to Teams free to be honest. Best way would be to start over signing up for Teams free with a new account, but that might not be an option.

@ChristianBergstrom I can't log in there (see attached). So what does that mean now?


EDIT: funnily enough in my admin center it says "Microsoft Teams (free) - Trial" so it is a (time limited) trial for a free service? That doesn't make any sense, does it?

Yup, that's the screen you get trying to go to the TAC using Teams free. Can't say what's going on here. Better try with the official support again.
Thank you a lot for your time and effort... I feel I am fighting against windmills (does that expression work in English?) with the official support. I have 3 Support Cases and lots of phone calls & E-Mails with different personnel (billing / tech / whatnot). Either they provide me with the (supposedly wrong) information that Teams free is meant to be a trial or they use a language I can't comprehent (tenant, domain, azure, ... A couple of which I could decipher in the mean time by myself, but still I am lost in communicating with them in many moments).
But I understand, that you are the wrong person to complain to :) Thank you again for listening/reading and confirming that the service should be free as advertised on the product page.

@ChristianBergstrom Just to add a little thingy... a couple of days ago, I created an additional Teams free account, which I don't plan to use, on another mail adress, advised by a support agent (she wanted to prove a point, probably because of some misunderstanding... see above regarding the windmills). I just claimed my admin onmicrosoft account for that one to check, what the product info says there... guess what: It's the same there (see attached, expiring 3 months after registering). Would you mind setting up a new Teams free account for yourself on an other (old/unused/...) email-address and check if you can get an (timewise) unlimited account? Maybe they changed something in the registering process? Or maybe I am truly doing something wrong?

Hey, can try that but have to be later. I'll update here.
Cool! Thank you. I'm looking forward indeed!

@In_go_M Well, I now totally get your confusion. Something has obviously been changed. I created a brand new Microsoft Personal Account followed by a sign up for a Teams free org. (just as the one I already have since several months) and look and behold!


*UPDATE* I just realized I selected for "work or school" this time, when previously selecting for "personal use". That's the difference I can think of. Still very confusing and the support pages needs to be updated.




@ChristianBergstrom Thanks for testing! So you are saying by chosing "personal use" it should still work? But I guess it would be against the Terms of Use to then use it in a work environment, I assume... so this would be useless for my use case. And still the advertisement suggests this should be ok to use Teams free for work:


Well... let's see, I am expecting another (probably the 7th or 8th) call back today from the Microsoft support in this matter, maybe this time it will be more satisfying... 



EDIT: I just tried to set up a new Teams account "for family and friends", but I failed, as I need to register with it a phone number but mine is already associated to my main account... so it won't let me. :(


EDIT2: maybe the @Microsoft_Teams_team can have a look at this then? tl;dr: teams free is now time limited? If so the product page and documentation need an update. If not there seems to be some weird stuff going on with the registration process: @ChristianBergstrom and I (and at least a couple of others) ended up with a 3 month trial for Teams free. Thanks for your attention.