Microsoft has recently announced that Office 365 has surpassed 1 million users (in just over 3 months). This latest release of Office is the best-selling version to date, with more than one copy being sold every second. John Case, vice president of marketing for the Microsoft Office Division believes that this success is due to the usefulness and ease of the product. “At its core, Office exists to help people get things done, and people tell us they are choosing the service because it delivers the full Office. It keeps them always-up-to-date and it’s a fantastic value.”
This chart shows the length of time each business took to reach 1 million users. The info graphic shows popular social media sites FaceBook and Spotify took longer than Office 365 to reach 1 million users. While many doubters believe subscription based services are a difficult sell, this chart shows the speed at which some customers are switching over.
What is Microsoft Office 365?
Office 365 is a subscription based model of Office that allows users to pay a yearly or monthly service fee for features including new Office applications, 27GB of SkyDrive cloud storage, and 60 Skype minutes per month. This new service offers access to all upgrades as opposed to older versions of Office that were a one-time purchase.
Online Subscriptions Trending
The trend for online subscriptions has been steadily increasing over the years. Companies such as Adobe and Microsoft have not only been offering subscription based services, but making them the number one option for customers. Microsoft is making 365 the heart of its marketing campaigns, urging users to switch over. However, Microsoft will continue to offer software for purchase as well as online based subscriptions. Kurt DelBene, the president of Microsoft Office Division, believes that it will take years to get all of Microsoft’s customers to purchase subscriptions. “We think in 10 years, almost all of our customers will be purchasing our software via subscription,” DelBene said.
Subscription or Home Premium Version?
While Office 365 sounds expensive at $99 a year, Microsoft lets users download applications to 5 devices. These applications include Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher, Outlook, and Access. The cost to purchase the same set of programs through Office Professional (which is a one-time purchase) is $399. Also, Office Professional only lets users download these programs to one device. So while some users may be uncomfortable signing up for a subscription based service and never physically owning the product, Office 365 can deliver a variety of programs to 5 devices.
Here are the Pros and Cons to Office 365.
- Little upfront investment
- Includes Web Apps, Newest Releases, and Skype
- Can be installed on up to 5 devices
- Use of the software expires when the account expires
- May be a waste if only installing to one device
- Can be more costly over the long term
Overall, each users has to decide which service is best for them- based on their needs. For now, we are just glad that Microsoft will continue to give customers the option of either subscription or physical purchase.