Slack Review 2024: Does the Most Popular Team Chat Deserve Its Reputation?

If your company uses a team chat app, chances are you’re familiar with Slack.

One of the pioneers of the team collaboration industry, Slack has continuously introduced new updates and features that keep it at the top of the market. It’s renowned for its intuitive and charming design, the smart use of channels, and a minimalistic, streamlined approach to business communication.

Slack isn’t without its flaws, which is why we’ve seen a lot of work instant messenger apps developed in the past decade. Each of these tools addresses something that Slack might have missed.

So, why is Slack so popular? Let’s take a look at what made Slack so successful, as well as some areas where it might need improvement.

About Slack

Slack started as an internal communications tool created by Tiny Speck while they were developing an online game called Glitch.

The messaging app was made available to the public in August 2013, with 8.000 users subscribing to the service within the first 24 hours. Since then, the app has amassed more than 20 million monthly active users, and there are predictions that it could reach up to 79 million in 2025.

In recent years, Slack has improved its position on the market through a series of acquisitions. In 2018, Atlassian shut down their messaging apps HipChat and Stride, announcing that Slack would be buying up the IP and taking on the users.

However, Slack itself was sold to Salesforce in December 2020 for a little over $27 billion in one of the biggest tech mergers we’ve ever witnessed. Integrated into Salesforce, it’s supposed to make the tech giant more competitive against Microsoft Teams.

Slack is often lauded for being customizable and easy to use, but it’s criticized for its hefty price tag and data privacy issues.

Slack Pros and Cons [Summary]

Before we review Slack in detail, let’s summarize its advantages and disadvantages.

Take a look at the table below.

Highly intuitive and easy-to-use interfacePrice may be а deal-breaker for some, especially as team size grows.
Customizable to fit various teams’ needsPotential data security vulnerabilities (no end-to-end encryption)
Available on mobile and desktopLack of project management tools
Threaded messagesLow call quality

Slack Overview: Key Features

Public and private channels are the backbone of all Slack conversations. As an admin, you can add people, change channel names, and perform other actions that make communication easier for everyone.

Within each channel, you can have threaded conversations—another signature Slack feature. Let’s say your coworker mentions you in a message on a large group chat, but you’re at lunch, so you don’t see it right away. After the mention, a whole other conversation starts, and the channel gets flooded with dozens of messages. Since the conversation in the channel has taken a different direction, you can answer this mention in a threaded message. This message wouldn’t show up at the bottom of the channel but at the side of the original message you were mentioned in.

These threads then get saved at the top of the navigation bar, making it nearly impossible to miss any important conversations you’re engaged in. This addresses one of the key issues with Slack: when you’re involved in too many channels, it can be easy to get lost and miss something that shouldn’t be missed.

Slack also allows for video and audio calls, but both of these features are often criticized as subpar compared to some other team collaboration tools. File sharing is available for files of up to 1GB when you upload them from your device or through file management software such as Google Drive, Box, etc. All paid plans come with unlimited file storage for every team member.

Check out other apps that may bypass this issue here!
16 Best Organization Apps to Get You Organized Once and for All in 2024

Interface and Ease of Use

Slack features a typical team chat design that has made it so popular over the years.

On the left, you have channels and group chats that individuals can join. They can be both public (open to anyone) and private (requiring an invitation). The two channels that every team gets right out of the box are #general and #random, both of which are public. You can easily start new channels that are dedicated to different projects, teams, clients, etc. The sidebar on the left also hosts private chats with individuals.

Most of the screen is taken up by the chat window—the actual conversation. When you click on the name of the channel on the upper left, you’ll see information about the channel you’re in, including its members, key topics, and files sent. The same goes for if you’re chatting with a person: you’ll get their profile info, email, pinned messages, and shared files.

The sidebar on the left is one of the best parts of the whole user experience with Slack. It’s nearly impossible to miss notifications, as channels with unread messages are always placed at the top, with notification symbols prominently displayed.

Advanced Team Collaboration

Slack advanced team collaboration

Slack isn’t meant to be an all-encompassing solution for team collaboration. You can’t use the app to assign tasks, manage projects, or do anything too complicated that you would do with productivity apps. It’s simply meant to streamline team communication.

That being said, Slack does offer you some advanced team collaboration options in the form of integrations. What does this mean in practice?

For example, with the Google Docs integration, you can share a Google Doc directly from the app and give someone commenting or editing permissions, all without leaving Slack. If you integrate with Google Calendar, you can create events like meetings, brainstorming sessions, etc. while in the chat window.

While these are simple integrations that make everything run smoother and more efficiently, you also have more elaborate integrations that transform Slack into a powerful team collaboration app. So, you can avoid Slack’s low call quality through a Zoom or Google Meet integration or integrate Slack with Trello to work on complex projects and organize whole teams.

Keep in mind, however, that the free plan only allows up to 10 integrations. Once you’re done with the ones for productivity (Calendar, Docs, Gmail, and Polly), you might be forced to upgrade to more expensive plans if you want to use Slack as an integrated organizational tool.

Not to mention the fact that to even use these integrations, you need to sign up for all the separate services first.

Slack Themes, Extensions, and Customization

You can customize Slack not just by choosing which channels you join but in many other ways.

By clicking on your profile picture in the upper right corner of the chat window and then selecting Preferences from the drop-down menu, you’ll see all your customization options. There, you can choose what you see in the sidebar, change your language and region, and play around with various settings that can help you personalize your Slack experience.

One of the most popular customization options is Themes. From the same Preferences menu, you can choose classic Slack themes that are available as presets. You can also choose between light and dark themes, and you’ll be surprised at how relaxing the dark theme is for the eyes.

But the most fun part is creating your theme. You can choose a color for everything—the sidebar, text, and hover items—and share your theme with others by copying the values from the box. You can also visit Slack’s theme library to get more than a hundred different themes, copy the values, and paste them into your Slack to see how they look.


Data privacy is a downside that often gets mentioned in Slack reviews.

The Electronic Frontier Federation (EEF), a digital rights foundation, criticized Slack for various shortcomings when it comes to data safety. A major source of criticism toward Slack’s privacy protocols came in 2018, when a retroactive change to their policy allowed admins to read all their employees’ conversations without their consent. This new policy also stated that users wouldn’t be notified when admins performed this action.

However, Slack’s 2018 privacy protocols are outdated and were updated in April 2018 and July 2023, incorporating changes in data protection law, clearer language, and more detailed information about data collection, usage, and disclosure.

More importantly, Slack isn’t an encrypted chat app, meaning they could, in theory, read your conversations if they needed to. They could also hand over those conversations to the government when faced with a data request. However, Slack provides BYOK functionality to enhance enterprise control over data encryption, addressing the risk of hackers intercepting messages due to its lack of end-to-end encryption.

Slack’s Limitations

Slack limitations

For starters, Slack’s costs are among the highest in the industry. If you find that the basic features offered in the free plan aren’t enough, you’ll end up paying a price tag that is more demanding than other similar apps. You might end up wondering whether such a price tag is worth paying for a collaboration tool with safety concerns and underwhelming video and chat call features.

Going back to the topic of data protection, we’ll mention that only Business+ users get the full palette of security options, including:

  • Data encryption at rest and in transit
  • Two-factor authentication
  • OAuth with Google
  • SAML-based single sign-on (SSO)

Although Slack (both for desktop and mobile) usually works fast, you can experience slowdowns and other performance issues occasionally.

Check out some apps that don’t have these issues!
The 10 Best Slack Alternatives in 2024 for Team Communication

Slack Pricing Plans

This review of Slack wouldn’t be complete if we hadn’t mentioned prices.

So, Slack offers a freemium pricing model, which means you can use the service for free with some limitations. The free version gives you a taste of the most basic features, but it lacks some important options. You are limited to a searchable chat history available for 90 days, only 1-to-1 audio and video calls, and 10 integrations.

To make the most out of Slack and customize it to your needs, you’ll have to invest in one of the paid plans. These plans are Pro($7.25), Business ($12.50), and Enterprise Grid, for which you have to contact their sales department to get an estimated price. All of these prices are per month, per user. It’s also worth noting that they’re valid only when billed yearly. If you want to pay monthly, the Pro plan rises to $8.75 per user per month, and the Plus plan becomes $15 per user per month.

Brosix: A Safer Team Chat With Advanced Features

While Slack is certainly a giant in the industry, you might need that extra security and more advanced team collaboration without the need to integrate with various apps.

If that’s the case, we recommend checking out Brosix. This business messaging app sports similar features but provides more data protection and admin control to ensure safety.

Safety through control

As an admin, you get to decide who has access to which features. You create your own Private Team Network and control the whole process of team communication—setting user-level permissions, enabling and disabling features for users, tracking communication, etc. All of this is done through the Web Control Panel, which also gives you access to usage statistics.

Additional safety is provided by our security protocols, such as end-to-end encryption. You also get an antivirus check to prevent malware from getting through to your network. What’s more, Brosix is HIPAA compliant. When it comes to Slack, HIPAA compliance is available only to Enterprise users.

No need for multiple integrations

With Brosix, you get advanced communication features that eliminate the need for so many integrations.

For example, while Slack has screen sharing options, Brosix has Screen sharing with Remote Desktop. This allows the other person in the session to control your desktop, which can be useful for training, tutorials, or accessing PCs for IT support.

Another advanced option is the Whiteboard which allows you to make presentations more engaging and interactive.

Conclusion: Slack Review 2024

Slack is a popular team chat app for a good reason. It’s highly intuitive, easy to use, and customizable.

However, many Slack app reviews criticize it for two important shortcomings that might even be deal-breakers for some companies, such as its price and data security.

If you’re concerned about any of these two things, give Brosix a try. For a more affordable price, Brosix provides you with a higher level of security and admin control, along with enterprise-level features for team collaboration.

Book a free demo and try it out!
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What is Slack, and why is it so popular?

Slack is a business messaging app that allows teams to communicate and collaborate effectively in a digital workspace. Slack is one of the most popular apps due to its user-friendly interface, extensive integration options, and features, such as direct messaging, messaging channels, file sharing, workflow automation, audio and video calls, and integrations with other tools and services.

How much does Slack cost?

Slack has a free plan with limited functionalities. It also offers various pricing plans, starting from per-month subscriptions for individuals to enterprise plans for larger organizations. For detailed pricing information, you can visit the official Slack website.

What are the differences between Slack and Microsoft Teams?

Slack and Microsoft Teams are both team messaging apps but have differences in their features, integration capabilities, and user experience. Ultimately, the choice between the two depends on the specific needs of the organization.

What are some popular Slack integrations available?

Slack integrates with a wide range of third-party applications and services to enhance productivity and collaboration. Some popular Slack integrations include Slack channels, Slack app directory, and Slack Connect.

Can I use a Slack account on multiple devices?

Yes, Slack lets you access your account from various devices, ensuring seamless communication and collaboration across platforms. Slack mobile apps are available for both iOS and Android devices, allowing users to access their workspaces and communicate on the go.

How can I find more information about joining an existing Slack team?

If you are interested in joining an existing Slack team, you can reach out to Slack customer support or the team admin for details on the onboarding process.

Nikola Baldikov

Nikola Baldikov is a Head of Marketing at Brosix, specializing in SaaS marketing, SEO, and outreach strategies. Besides his passion for digital marketing, he is an avid football fan and loves to dance. Connect with him on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter at @baldikovn.

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