Office 365 Home Premium Hits Stores Today

Office 365 Home Premium Hits Stores Today

Microsoft officially released an entirely new version of their famed productivity suite today, Office 365 Home Premium. While this version is targeted at consumers, Microsoft will release the corporate version next month. The new software is said to be dramatically better than it’s predecessors, but there are a few facts consider before upgrading.

First, this version runs on both Windows PCs and Macs. That is a big change! In the past Microsoft always maintained two separate versions. Next, the licensing model has changed significantly. When a user buys a copy of Office 365 Home Premium for $99, they receive 5 licenses which can be used on either Windows or Mac computers. These licenses are good for one year, and then must be renewed. There is also a monthly subscription package for a rate of $9.99/month.

For those who prefer a one time license for a single PC, Microsoft is offering Office Home & Business 2013 at a cost of $219. This package includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote. If you are one of those folks who needs Access, don’t fret. Microsoft also sells Office Professional 2013 for a one time cost of $399. The latter bundles Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Access, and Publisher. The Office 365 Home Premium suite includes the same programs as Office Professional 2013, but adds a new application, Lync. Also new to this suite an Office app store that allows users to add functionality by downloading plug-ins and extensions for the Office applications.

There is one more significant change with Office 365. The applications now stream off a server, so there are no patches to install… ever. Microsoft updates the server side and the next time you connect… you’re running the updated version. The application installed on the computer is just to grant access to the online content. Currently, Windows 7 and 8 are supported as well as Mac OS X 10.5.8 and later. Windows phone 7.5 and later are supported, but there is no mention on an iOS or Android version.

About the Author

avatar KALE: A geek who works in the IT Security field and lives in Dallas, TX. He is also a music geek who has played in several local bands. Previous to his IT career, Kale worked as a photojournalist. He brings technical advice and artistic counterpoint to the podcast.