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Help understanding Office 365 and what it installs

Posted on 2014-09-29
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Last Modified: 2014-10-04
Hi experts

I need some help understanding my Microsoft Office 365 install.

I have a PC laptop that I had previously installed MS Office 2013 onto. One of my client's is using Office 365 so I have bought a subscription to Office 365 and installed 365 that also onto my PC.

But there is no Office 365 icon. For example with Word there is no Word 365 icon, only a Word 2013 icon. Are they the same thing? If I hadn't previously installed 2013 onto my machine, I would have ended up with 2013 anyway because of my 365 subscription?

When I now go into Word and look at what version I'm using it says product Activated Microsoft Office Professional 2013 and then underneath it is Subscription product Microsoft Office 365.

Confused?? Please help.
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Question by:Fi69
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by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 167 total points
ID: 40351290
I have a subscription to Office 365 and it is Office 2013 that was installed. I think if you purchase the Office subscription, that is what you get.

If you have Office 2010 installed, say, you can use Microsoft's Exchange service also called 365 which is a bit confusing to me.

But as I noted, purchasing the Office subscription gives you Office 2013.
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by:convergint
convergint earned 166 total points
ID: 40351354
When you purchase the Office 365 subscription, it installs whatever the latest version of Office will be (in this case it will be 2013).  And if Microsoft decides to release 2015 tomorrow, you'll automatically get upgraded to that version.  However, it is technically a different install than 2013 as you can actually have a retail/OEM copy installed of 2013 AND the Office 365 version (that's what I have right now).  Also depending on the subscription level you might get different flavors of 365 but eventually it'll all be professional I believe.

We are right in the transition phase of Microsoft and pretty soon I doubt there will be a retail boxed/OEM version, it will all be subscription based just like Windows will be.

Once we move to the subscription model, it'll just be "Office" or "Windows" and every year or two there will be feature releases, etc instead of different versions.
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Ingeborg Hawighorst earned 167 total points
ID: 40351356
Hello,

Office 365 is not a version, it is a sales and licensing model.

Consider this:

Jane buys Office in a shop (or online), pays once and takes home (or downloads) a box with a DVD from which she install it. This license does not expire.

John subscribes to Office 365, pays a monthly fee and uses Office as long as he continues to pay the subscription. He can download and install Office on his computer. Depending on the edition flavour he subscribes to, there are features and other services bundled with the subscription. For instance all that online, web and OneDrive stuff (some of which is also free to everybody).

This is all about how Office is purchased and gets installed on a computer, but not what version of Office is installed.

With Jane's one-time purchase, she will get the version that she pays for, say Office 2013. And after she installs it, it will still be version 2013.  In five years, it will still be Office 2013.

With John's 365 subscription, the version will be upgraded and will change as time passes. He may be starting out with 2013, because that is the current version. But a 365 customer also gets updates and new features that are included in the 365 license. These will be delivered like the Windows updates as Microsoft releases new functionality.

At some point in time, the next version, let's call it Office 2016 will become available as a boxed set on installation media that can be bought in the shop.

By that time, John's Office 365 installation will have become the version 2016 through continual updates.
If Jane wants Office 2016, she will have to buy another installer DVD and pay once for a license that does not expire. Or she can opt for the the subscription model, pay a monthly fee and can then install the current version on her computer.

And so the story continues.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Fi69
ID: 40361686
Thanks for the clarification everyone. Much appreciated.
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