What is Microsoft 365?

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You must have heard of Microsoft 365

Microsoft Office as a product line has been around for three decades, starting off as a bundle with a discounted price including the main desktop apps such as Word, Powerpoint and Excel. Later on in 2011 Office 365 made its debut, it is a cloud based suite with the product apps such as Word, Powerpoint, Outlook and much more. And now Office 365 has made its transition into Microsoft 365 (business).

A computer screen with Microsoft 365 logo and programs

What is Microsoft 365?

Microsoft 365 is a subscription based service that will ensure you have up to date Office apps. Microsoft 365 also combines the best in class apps with very powerful cloud services, advanced security and better device management. All of this merged together brings the best environment for personal, family or business work.

What is the difference between Microsof Office and Microsoft 365?

Well the first difference is Microsoft 365 is not a one time purchase, but instead its a monthly or yearly paid subscription. Microsoft 365 includes a bundle of services, such as the desktop apps Word, Powerpoint, Excel, and other apps depending on which subscription you buy, it also includes cloud-file storage, business-class email and secure communication tools.

Of course you still have the option to do a one time purchase for Office 2021, which includes the desktop apps Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Office 2021 does not give you the option to upgrade.

What subscriptions are available?

There are 3 different types of subscriptions for Microsoft 365, those are the following:

  • Personal/Family(For home usage)
  • Business/Enterprise(For work usage)
  • Education(For school and college)

If you want to use Microsoft 365 for at home then you will go with the first option, if you only want to use Microsoft 365 for yourself then you can select the personal subscription, this will give you 1 TB OneDrive of cloud storage with the ability to use all services across Windows desktops, Mac OS, iPhones, Androids and tablets. If you want to share with friends or family you can select the family subscription, this gives you the option to share with up to 6 accounts and gives you 6 TB of cloud storage(1 TB for each account) paired with Microsoft Family Safety.

For work environments you will have 4 subscriptions of Business: Business Basic, Apps for Business, Business Standard and Business Premium. Basic will give you the web and mobile versions of the office apps and basic security. Apps for Business will give you the desktop office apps with premium features. Business standard will give you everything of Business Basic, but in addition it will also give you the desktop office apps,  you can also easily host webinars and manage customers appointments. Finally we have Business Premium, this includes everything from Business standard but with advanced security, access & data control and cyber threat protection.

For your own Enterprise there are 3 different subscriptions, Microsoft 365 E3, Microsoft 365 E5 and Microsoft 365 F3. E3 offers best in class productivity apps along with core security for your enterprise, E5 expands more on advanced security and analytical capabilities for your enterprise. F3(formerly known as F1) is more cloud based.

Microsoft 365 Education is free for students who go to school or college, it is similar to the personal subscription, except in this case it’s free if you are eligible.

Which Services are included?

Of course depending on which subscription you choose, some things may differ, but here we have a list of services you will get that are common amongst all editions.

  • Exchange Online: Every Microsoft 365 subscriber will get a business-class email with 50 – 100 GB of mailbox space in your organization, access to web email or outlook on multiple devices at any moment and built in Malware and Spam filtering.
  • OneDrive for Business: Each subscriber gets 1 TB OneDrive of online personal storage, with data being kept in the cloud and accessible at any moment. Storage can be upgraded to unlimited if 1 TB isn’t enough.
  • SharePoint Online: With a more Sleek interface, SharePoint allows teams to share files and sync information within File Explorer while using the same client.
  • Microsoft Teams: Used for communications such as HD video conference, messaging and team-channel based setups.

There are also the Desktop applications, which are Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook and OneNote. These are all available across Windows PC’s and Mac PC’s. On the Windows PC’s there will be 2 desktop applications that are only available on Windows as of now: Access and Publisher. In contrast to Microsoft Word, Microsoft Publisher is a desktop publishing application that places more emphasis on page layout and graphic design than on text composition and proofreading. Microsoft Access is a database management system from Microsoft that combines the relational Access Database Engine with a graphical user interface and software-development tools.

Conclusion

We hope we have answered the most common questions you might have about what Microsoft 365 entails, how it’s priced and what the different plans have to offer for you. If you would like to purchase Microsoft 365 but are unsure which option is ideal for your needs, please fill out the contact form and we will get back to you within one business day with the relevant information.

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