What's the difference between Office 365 and Office 2013?

I'm using Microsoft Office 2010 but I'll soon be getting a new computer and will need to install office. I find the alternate references to office 2013 and Office 365 confusing . Can someone clarify this for me and suggest the best way to proceed?
Office 2013 is a subset of Office 365.  Yes the references to both do cause a muddle.

In general, Office 2013 refers to the newest version of Office.  But specifically, "Office 2013 ..." refers to the 1-computer local install ("traditional") license.

Office 365 is the general name of a new bundle of office products. They typically allow you to install on up to 5 computers at the same time (with 1 exception).  Office 365 does not do a "traditional" install. Instead it sets up a "virtual computer" for Office to run in.  The main "selling point" is that users no longer have to worry about applying updates. MS now handles it all for you.  To sell the Office 365 bundle, MS includes 20 GB of skydrive space and 60 minutes per month of Skype time. The Office applications themselves are essentially identical in both the local install and 365 install.

The local install is a 1 time payment while Office 365 is a "subscription" / rental s**m scheme.

If you have only one computer, economically it may be less expensive to buy the local install.  If you have 4 or 5 computers and / or plan on using the Skydrive space or Skype time, then 365 may be cheaper.

One thing to pay attention to. If you look through this forum you'll see that many people are having problems installing and keeping the 365 version running. There is no clear indication of how widespread the issue is and no sign of a fix for the problems.

Here are some articles that go into more detail

What is Office 2013 vs 365 - video

http://blogs.office.com/b/office_blog/archive/2013/04/29/office-15-minute-webinar-questions-answered-on-office-365-home-premium.aspx - 15 minute video



Office 365 and Office 2013 – what’s the difference?



What’s the difference between Office 365 and Office 2013 local install?



The "base" applications are the same. Office 365 is the next attempt of MS to MAKE MORE MONEY! Or at least to create a steady flow of "rental" income rather than the bursts of new version "purchase" income (of course if you read the terms of the license we are not actually "purchasing" our local copies of Office, we are just licensing it and MS can revoke that license any time they feel like it).

Yes, depending on the Office 365 package you get, the monthly rent will sooner or later end up costing more than a purchase.  But, if you look at the packages you'll see that they include more features than the "base" local install includes. Things like "free" (well part of the 365 bundle) Skydrive storage. But also things like SharePoint functionality without having to set up your own server installation. server, Office-on-Demand: This option provides a single Office application on demand to users when they need it.  The Office application is streamed to the PC but is not permanently installed. Office 365 Home Premium allows you to "install" on up to 5 home computers. And a bunch of other "stuff".  Another advantage of the Office 365 bundle is that you won't have to buy "Office 16", it will appear "automatically" as part of your "rental" deal.













http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2407380,00.asp - Microsoft Reality: Understanding Touch

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2407349,00.asp - Microsoft Office 2013 and Office 365: A Deeper Dive (slide show)


So the question becomes, how safe do you feel running your business in the "cloud", and storing your personal, confidential, proprietary data files in MS "cloud" storage. The paranoid "security freaks" out there will ask uncomfortable questions like:

o   Do you trust MS not to "peek"? 

o   Do you trust your or foreign governments to not "subpoena" your data (maybe without even bothering to tell you a la "patriot act" and it's various lovely cousins)

o   Do you trust MS not to "leak", or be hacked? MANY other big companies have, what makes MS invulnerable?

o   Are you positive that the connection between your computer and the "cloud" is unhackable?

and other similar "nasty" questions that MS doesn't want you to think about. 



365- Future Subscription Possibilities - Price increase / Feature decrease     


How might Microsoft increase the cost of Office 365?

by Office Watch

The often quoted price for an Office 2013/365 subscription is only for the first year, so how might Microsoft increase the price?

There’s all sorts of opportunities for Microsoft to raise revenue from Office subscribers once they’ve put themselves on the annual fee track rather than one time payments for Office software. Microsoft has all sorts of marketing models that they keep to themselves and management haven’t decided on what exact pricing strategy they’ll use. Outsiders can only examine the past and gaze into the future.

Office 365 Home Premium is currently sold at around US$100 per year but should really be labelled as ‘$100 for the first year’ because there’s no price guarantee. ‘Home Premium’ has all the major and minor Office apps including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Access and Publisher (not all available for the Mac).

It’s possible that Microsoft will just increase the price but they’re usually more subtle. Part of the promotion of Office is to have some low ‘headline’ price that Microsoft can push to the media. It’s a trick that’s worked in the past.

Use of the word ‘Premium’ might be a clue to future Office 365 price increases. The price of ‘Home Premium’ edition could rise while a new ‘Home Basic’ option is introduced with less programs but at around the current $100 ‘headline’ price.

Existing subscribers would be automatically renewed at the new higher ‘Premium’ price unless they explicitly choose another subscription option before the renewal date. Automatic renewals at a higher price is just one benefit to Microsoft software subscriptions.

Microsoft hopes that people will use applications like Access and Publisher more than they are now and therefore want to pay for a subscription that includes them. However, Redmond won’t mind if people pay a higher price for a subscription they don’t entirely use. Customers might not understand what they are paying for or they just let the automatic renewal happen each year on terms that suit Microsoft.

Another likely scenario is a low cost Office subscription that doesn’t include Outlook. Microsoft knows that Outlook is a key program for many people and in the past we’ve seen a price jump between a basic bundle of Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Onenote) and a bundle that includes Outlook as well. Outlook is harder to migrate from compared to say, Word, so Microsoft can charge more for it.

That’s not the end of the possible price increase scenarios. Microsoft can offer extras to make comparisons between old and new pricing more difficult as well as try to keep customers using Microsoft services. The current Home Premium bundle includes some Skype calling minutes and Skydrive storage. Those benefits can be retained or changed for a revised Premium edition.

There’s scope for Office 365 program subscriptions to be more closely bundled with some of the cloud services like Exchange Server (email, calendar, contacts, tasks) which not only raises revenue but also more tightly entwines a customer into Microsoft services.

That’s another part of the subscription strategy – entanglement. Offering a subscription and online service as part of Office software means each customer becomes more dependent on Microsoft. Moving away from Microsoft Office becomes that much harder.

Subscription pricing benefits Microsoft more than it benefits consumers.

If MSFT shareholder value was better with one-off sales of Office software, Microsoft would not be making this change. Annual price changes and rearrangements let Microsoft increase the money it gets from customers over time.

That’s why Microsoft is making the initial Office 365 offer so compelling compared to the more traditional way of buying Office. Once they’ve got enough people switched over to Office subscriptions, Microsoft will be able to get more money from their customers than ever before.

Many years ago, Microsoft Office was keenly priced when faced with competitors like WordPerfect but later Microsoft started jacking up the price. It’ll be the same with subscription pricing of Office. Once a ‘tipping point’ of people and organizations are on board, then Microsoft will take advantage of their captive audience.

Article posted: Thursday, 21 March 2013

PKC- Office 2013 pricing loophole discounts suite by as much as $40



Subscription price trap


Even the New York Times falls for Microsoft’s spin on Office 2013/365 prices


Why Microsoft's pushing Office subscriptions


http://www.worldstart.com/why-is-software-being-sold-as-a-subscription/ - a generic view on the question, but same answer “MORE MONEY”


2013 02 14- Microsoft says: Buy Office 365, Not Office 2013. Or You'll Be Sorry


"Office 365 customers will get most updates first, and they will get upgrades and/or new capabilities. Office 2013 customers will get the same updates as Office 365 customers, usually in the form of a service pack, later than Office 365 customers, and they do not get upgrades and/or new capabilities."

The service packs will be rolled out "when needed," the Microsoft representative added. Microsoft will also continue to support Office 2013, as it does all of its products, for ten years.

What's An Update? What's An Upgrade?

Under the Office definitions, new content will be made available to users in the form of updates, minor improvements and patches; and more significant, major upgrades. Fortunately, at least for business users, Microsoft publishes its list of updates and upgrades here

Updates happen on a monthly basis; in October, for example, the Office 365 updates consisted of new Office Web Apps, PDF viewing inside the browser, and a new administrator ability to set password expiration dates. In December, the updates were less significant: a rate-limit increase for both Outlook and Exchange.

The new 2013 upgrade features include, according to Microsoft:

-       Wider support for mobile devices, so you and your staff can be more productive in more places.

-       Integration between online conferencing, social networks, and email for improved collaboration.

-       File sharing and storage in the cloud with SkyDrive Pro.

-       Smarter email, calendar and contacts with broader mobile support.

-       Improved management capabilities in the redesigned Office 365 admin portal.


Office 2013 – watching the sales pitch



Office 2013 on sale - Is it Worth Getting?



2012 09 16 Microsoft raises Office 2013 prices to push new Office 365 sub plans – price analysis - 4 devices


Very good, in-depth analysis worth reading - Calculates that average home user needs to use 4 devices to “break even



This page points out that Amazon (US) is selling 2010 Home and Student for US$99



 Here are some videos about the features of 365

Initial Office 365 Install on your PC or Mac


The key thing to remember is that the 2013 license is associated with 1, presumably yours, email address.  You may use the license to install on up to 5 devices at the same time, including both PC’s and Macs. The Macs still get Office 2011 for Mac, until it is eventually upgraded.

Once you install Office 365 on a computer using your email address, you may share the installation with other Windows user ids created on that computer.

That first email address is considered the “administrator” of the license. It can “uninstall” the license from a given computer if you want to transfer the allowed installation to another computer.


Video: Activate / Deactivate your Office 365 installs



Install Office on more than one computer


You can install your Office 365 2013 Home premium license on up to 5 devices. On each of those devices, multiple family members can have Windows accounts to access the Office apps you installed. You can install Office 365 Home Premium on up to five Mac or PC computers. You can even install it on a family member’s computer. Before you start, check the system requirements to make sure your computer can run Office.


Video: Adding family members to your Office 365 2013 5 installations

http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/videos/video-adding-family-members-to-office-VA103985961.aspx - right at the end of this video it says after the admin sets up the Office 365 access, other user accounts on the computer can access the skydrive space. I (Rohn007) have not tested this myself.


Video: Get the most out of your Office 365 subscription



Video: Use Office anywhere with Office on Demand


Go to Office.com. Log in with you account ID. Open any file from skydrive and a full copy of the App will run.


  FAQ- How can I reinstall Office? / I purchased Office 365 Home Premium. How do I install Office on another computer?


If you purchased Office 365 Home Premium, you can reinstall Office at any time at office.com/myaccount by signing in with your Microsoft account. You do not need your Product Key to reinstall or install Office on additional computers.


Install Office 365 Home Premium on a Mac



2013 06 14- Office “Mobile” (365) on iPhone


You need any Office 365 license to use this version. Office Mobile for iPhone does not count against your five PCs/Macs limit because it’s a mobile offering. So now there is a new category of mobile devices, where each Office 365 subscriber can also attach up to 5 Office Mobile installs to their account.

Includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint Mobile, but not OneNote Mobile, which is available as a separate free download. 

No Office for iPad yet, but I understand that (free) Office Web Apps work reasonably well in the Safari browser.


2013 06 14- Microsoft rolls out Office Mobile for iPhone


http://office-watch.com/t/n.aspx?a=1864 Office Mobile for iPhone

http://office-watch.com/t/n.aspx?a=1866 Who can really get Office Mobile for iPhone

http://office-watch.com/t/n.aspx?a=1865 saving documents - only to skydrive

Here’s the real qualification rules, buried down in an FAQ.

“Any Office 365 subscription plan that includes the full Office desktop applications also include Office Mobile. Specifically, these plans are: Office 365 Home Premium, Office 365 Small Business Premium, Office 365 Midsize Business, Office 365 Enterprise E3 and E4, Office 365 Education A3 and A4, Office 365 ProPlus, and Office 365 University. There are also Office 365 government plans that include Office Mobile. You will need to sign in to your Office 365 subscription on first run to activate Office Mobile. “

We could not find any way to save a document to the iPhone’s local storage. Nor can you save a document to the device via iTunes via Device | Apps | File Sharing because Office Mobile for iPhone isn’t one of the apps listed there.

Documents received by email can be opened in Office Mobile for iPhone. Send a document via email using the ‘Share’ option.

A document in Dropbox or other cloud storage can be opened via the ‘Open in …’ menu in iOS which shows a list of the compatible apps for that file type. However you can’t save back to the same cloud storage – any document you save goes to SkyDrive regardless of its original source.


Why sign in? Your files and settings are always waiting for you with Office 365



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Last updated January 4, 2021 Views 14,276 Applies to: