Microsoft announced that Scheduler is retiring, starting September 1st, 2023. Although some are saying they are planning to fusion this feature with other offerings in the future, there are no official announcements about that.
What is Scheduler?
It is a service for Microsoft 365, formerly known as Calendar.help that enables Cortana to act as the front-end for scheduling meetings outside one’s organization. It started rolling out in June 2021, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, in English across Microsoft 365 accounts.
How does it work?
Scheduler enables users to say queries in natural language. I.e., ‘’Find time for Nick and me to meet for a kick-off call’’. Meanwhile, the backend service looks up availability and goes back and forth over email before sending the invites. This service can also reschedule or cancel meetings.
So far, it has been available as an add-on for many Microsoft 365 licenses with a Microsoft Exchange Online plan. Scheduler is $10 USD per user per month (with annual commitment) and $12 USD per user per month under month-to-month no commitment. There are volume pricing and partner discounts available, and a 30-day standard free trial.
Although Microsoft didn’t say why they are discontinuing the service, it could be because of lack of use. Also, there is a similar tool for Outlook called FindTime.
Now that Scheduler is retiring, we are excited to see what other changes this will bring to partners and users. In the meantime, take advantage of this service while you can.
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