Microsoft Office Desktop subscription version How Office is paid for Of the differences between Office and Office , purchase plans are among the most striking. Office , whether bought one copy at a time in retail or in lots of hundreds via volume licensing, has been dubbed a "one-time purchase" by Microsoft to spell out how it's paid for. Labels like "perpetual," which have been widely used by Computerworld, technically note the type of license rather than payment methodology, but in Office's case, the kind of license is tied to whether it was bought outright or simply "rented. That purchase, actually of a license to legally run the software, gives the buyer the right to use Office in perpetuity. In other words, the license has no expiration date, and users may run the suite as long as they want. Pay for Office this year and use it for the next seven years? Run it until ?
Its subscription model has obvious advantages for Microsoft, but also means that some companies that would normally only upgrade their software every other generation end up spending more on Office than they would otherwise. However, the deal has potential benefits for your business, too: While perpetual Office licences are sold on a per-computer basis, Office subscriptions are per user. Each of your users can install Office on up to five PCs, five tablets, and five phones, making it easy for them to work between their office desktop, home PC, laptop, tablet, phone and any other devices they might regularly use. Side-by-side comparison of Word desktop and Word online editing interfaces Office has some features that are only possible because it is a cloud-based service, most notable of which are VoIP telephony and video conferencing through Skype for Business, an email server for your domain that gives each user 50GB of inbox storage, 1TB of OneDrive cloud storage per user, and desktop, mobile, and web apps that are all linked to the same user account, making it easy to ensure that your staff don't lose track of their files between multiple software installations. The most useful aspect of Office for many businesses is likely to be its collaboration and co-authoring capabilities.