14 of the best Slack alternatives for 2021

For more than 12 million people, Slack is the first tool they open in the morning to start their work day. And it becomes the market leader in the team collaboration industry, simplifying the work of employees and increasing their productivity.

But not everyone is excited about Slack. Some prefer not to pay a premium for unlimited search capabilities (the free version limits them to the last 10,000 messages). Others prefer a self-hosted solution that Slack doesn’t offer to gain more control over their team’s communications.

Remote teams are becoming more mainstream and this is why more and more people are looking for affordable team chat tools that suit their needs.

If you’re in the same boat, check out this list of the best Slack alternatives.

Best Slack alternatives for 2021

  1. Google chat
  2. Chanty
  3. Microsoft teams
  4. RocketChat
  5. discord
  6. The most important
  7. herd
  8. Ryver
  9. Glip
  10. Flowdock
  11. Fleep
  12. twist
  13. High side
  14. Troop messengers

1. Google Chat

  • Available for: Android, Computer, iPhone and iPad
  • Price: Free for Gmail users

Google Chat is a Slack alternative built into Gmail. You can chat with anyone who also has a Gmail account, whether that account is paid or free. You can also use Google Meet with Google Chat to make audio and video calls. These tools replace Google Hangouts with similar functionality.

shows the difference between Google Hangouts and Google Chat

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2. Chanty

  • Available for: Mac, Windows, Android, iPhone and iPad
  • Price: Free for up to 10 members, $ 3 per user per month for additional features and unlimited members

Chanty is a simple team chat tool for small and medium teams that doesn’t limit searchable message history. Similar to Slack, you can communicate in public and private channels, as well as in one-on-one conversations. Chanty also organizes all of your files, links, tasks, and conversations in folders in a feature called Teambook.

In general, Chanty’s built-in task manager and intuitive user interface make the chat tool a solid Slack alternative for less tech-savvy users. However, if you’re a tech freak, Zapier lets you connect Chanty to a variety of apps, making the team chat platform more robust.

Chanty as a casual alternative

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3. Microsoft Teams

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and the web
  • Price: Free for up to 100 video participants and 500,000 chat users. Premium offers starting at $ 5.00 per user per month.

Microsoft Teams is a business chat tool primarily aimed at companies. However, if you happen to subscribe to one of the Microsoft Office 365 plans, you already have access to Microsoft Teams.

However, if you don’t have any of these plans, you can get started with the freemium version of the tool. It includes all the major team chat features like instant chats, audio / video calls and integrations. It also offers integrations for all Office 365 products and 250+ apps and services.

It’s also important to note that Microsoft Teams isn’t the easiest app to implement. So make sure your team admin is tech savvy.

Microsoft teams as a casual alternative

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4. RocketChat

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, Linux and the web
  • Price: Free up to 1,000 users, $ 3 per user per month for additional features and unlimited members

RocketChat is a free, open source Slack alternative that allows you to customize the look and feel to suit your own needs. One of the best features of RocketChat is that it is easy to migrate to. All you have to do is export your files from Slack or HipChat and upload them to RocketChat.

RocketChat also has useful features like real-time translation, live chat client, and E2E encryption, making it a Slack alternative that is definitely worth a look.


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5. Discord

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, Linux and the web
  • Price: Free, $ 9.99 per month for more advanced features like larger uploads and high definition video and screen sharing capabilities

Discord is an industry leading team communication app for gamers. Thanks to its extensive functionality and unlimited message history, many users take advantage of this feature for their work teams.

The first time you use Discord, the app shares your channels through text and voice. However, Discord’s channel settings allow you to easily implement the concept of Slack’s private and public channels. It’s also the only app on this list that has push-to-talk capabilities.

Keep in mind, however, that Discord may not be built into apps you might use at work, like most of the team chat tools on this list. However, if you need free space to communicate via text, voice, or video, Discord might be a good option for you.

Discord as a casual alternative

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6. The most important

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, Linux, Web
  • Price: Free up to 10 users, $ 10 per user per month for distributed organizations.

Mattermost is an open source solution that can be fully customized to meet your company’s needs. You can also implement Mattermost with private cloud hosting or a self-managed server.

Mattermost offers freemium pricing plans for small teams with unlimited message history and integration. In addition, Mattermost supports more than a dozen languages, making it great for global teams.

most important chat and communication app

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7. Herd

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, Linux and the web
  • Price: Free up to 20 users, $ 4.50 per user per month up to 100 members, and advanced features

Flock is workplace chat software that claims to run faster than Slack. In addition to regular communication functions such as instant chat, audio and video calls, it also offers integrated surveys, reminders, notes and task snippets.

The freemium version of Flock is limited to 10,000 searchable messages. Paid plans unlock useful features like screen sharing and unlimited message history.

Flock Message Threading App

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8. Ryver

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and the web
  • Price: $ 49 per month for up to 12 users, extended offers available

Ryver is a team communication tool known for its Trello-like built-in task manager that allows you to convert messages into tasks and manage them using Kanban boards.

Similar to Slack, you can communicate with Ryver through open forums, private groups, and direct messages. It also makes voice and video calls for up to 5 users per call. If you have a Zapier account, you can also connect Ryver to your favorite apps.

Ryver messaging app

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9. Glip

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and the web
  • Price: Free for up to 100 participants, $ 14.99 per user per month for up to 200 participants, and advanced features

Glip is a team collaboration tool developed by RingCentral. While Slack has configurable features that make it a unitary team chat app, Glip has built-in features like tasks, calendar, and notes.

You can connect Glip to other apps through Zapier or one of the 20+ custom integrations.

Glip as a casual alternative

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10. Flowdock

  • Available for: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, Linux and the web
  • Price: $ 3 per user per month, advanced features available

Flowdock is a Slack alternative that organizes the conversation by thread. Your topics are color-coded so you can easily navigate between topics and organize your team’s communication.

Similar to Slack, Flowdock offers open, inviting, and one-on-one chats. In addition, you can connect Flowdock to more than 100 of your favorite apps.

Flowdock communication app

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11. Fleep

  • Available on: Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android and iOS
  • Price: Free up to 10GB of file storage, $ 5 per user, per month (billed annually) for 100GB of storage

Fleep is based on the idea of ​​”conversations” where users can participate in a discussion on a specific topic. To make these conversations more actionable, Fleep added “To Do” functions for assigning and coordinating work, as well as the “Pinboard” function that allows users to pin important messages, details or announcements to the page for easy access.

While 1: 1 conversations are unlimited across the board, the Freemium version has limited storage and can only support 3 group conversations. For unlimited group calls, you need to upgrade to the business plan.

Fleep messaging software

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12. Twist

  • Available on: MacOS, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, Web
  • Price: Free, $ 5 per user per month for unlimited history, integrations, and storage

Twist is the communication software that is ideal for asynchronous teams. The model moves from real-time conversations to “deeper, structured communication” via the “threads” function. Instead of a group chat, users have to designate a specific “thread” for conversations on this topic. One-to-one and small-group chat is also available for non-threaded conversations.

The freemium version offers a month-long search history limit and a maximum file storage of 5 GB. However, the more advanced plans remove these limitations.

Twist communication app interface

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13. HighSide

  • Available on: Windows, MacOS, Ubuntu, iPhone, Android
  • Price: $ 4.67 per user per month, $ 12.50 per user per month for advanced admin and compliance needs

HighSide is a good choice for organizational communication with advanced security requirements. HighSide offers end-to-end encryption, authentication and secure cloud storage. The infrastructure can even help you ensure compliance with HIPAA, GDPR, and more. It also has a Microsoft Teams extension that you can use to work securely across apps.

Highside Secure Slack alternative

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14. Troop messenger

  • Available on: Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, iOS
  • Price: $ 2.5 per user per month for up to 150GB of storage, $ 5 per user per month for advanced features and more storage

Troop Messenger offers chat, audio, and video calling, and screen sharing like many other communication apps. However, it even offers audio messaging and remote desktop control so your team can leverage a wide variety of use cases in one solution. The premium version includes interesting features like “Burnout” (which allows users to work together confidentially for a certain period of time before the history is removed) and “Respond Later” so that you can prioritize your communication without forgetting anything.

Troops Messenger Software Interface

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Fortunately, when choosing the right communication tool for your team, you have a variety of options. I briefly featured the best apps your team might like. However, if you need more in-depth information on team chat tools like Slack, check out Chanty’s review of Slack alternatives. It shares Chanty’s experience and feedback from testing seven different team chat software within eight weeks.

Olga Mykhoparkina is Chief Marketing Officer at Chanty, a team messaging platform and customer of HubSpot.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in September 2018 and has been updated for completeness.

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