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What is Office 365?

  • Office 365 is cloud based software and services offered by Microsoft via a monthly or annual subscription
  • Cloud based software means software that is downloaded and installed directly from the Internet, as opposed to purchasing the products written on a CD or DVD. The most common of these is Microsoft Office, which is Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint etc.
  • Cloud based services refer to business management software that hosted online instead of installed on your computer as they used to be. Reckon Accounts and MYOB are well known examples of cloud based services that used to installed locally. For Microsoft, these services include SharePoint, Exchange Online, OneDrive Dynamics and others. These services are detailed on this website

How the subscriptions work

Microsoft groups products and services they believe best compliment each other into plans, and these plans that are sold on a subscription basis, paid monthly or annually. Office 365 includes plans for use at home and for business. Learn about Office 365 for use at home. Office 365 plans for business include services such as Skype for Business web conferencing and Exchange Online hosted email for business, document management solutions SharePoint and its online storage cousinĀ OneDrive for Business.

Cloud based software

Many Office 365 plans also include the desktop version of the latest Office applications, which users can download and install across multiple devices. These include PCs, Macs, Android tablets, Android phones, iPad, and iPhone.The fully installed applications include: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher, and Access. (Publisher and Access are available on PC only.) When you have an active Office 365 subscription that includes the desktop version of Office, you always have the most up-to-date version of the applications.

The Office 365 plans that are online-only are a great choice for certain business needs, and they are designed to work with the latest version of Office, Office 2013, and Office 2011 for Mac. Previous versions of Office, such as Office 2010 and Office 2007, may work with Office 365 with reduced functionality. Get more details about which Office versions are supported. NOTE: This compatibility with Office does not include the Exchange Online Kiosk or Office 365 Enterprise K1 plans.

Cloud based services

Cloud based services are the primary focus of Microsoft’s growth strategy and have revolutionized how we evaluate and implement software and systems in our business operations. Not so long ago files and folders were stored on in-house servers or computers. Business management software was installed the same way, was expensive and required regular maintenance and updates. Now all of these services have a cloud alternative, which is most cases is the most practical and cost efficient approach to managing your data.