A couple of years ago we compared an Office 365 annual subscription to just purchasing Microsoft Office outright. Since then, Microsoft has been pushing their 365 subscriptions more than ever, and it seems like they really don’t want people to buy Office as a one-off purchase anymore – although that option is definitely very much still there. Recently they have changed what they are offering slightly, so we thought it was time to make an up-to-date topic where we compare the two products.
There are several factors which can help you decide which version of Office is better for you. Do you work on a Windows computer or a Mac? Do you need to work on a mobile device Like a phone or tablet? Do you need extra apps like Outlook or Publisher? And are you just buying Office for yourself or do you need other members of the family to have it on their computers too? We hope by reading this article you can make a decision on which type of Microsoft Office is the best one for you.
Let’s have a look at the extra features in Office 365.
Firstly, you get 1 Terabyte of OneDrive Storage. In our opinion, this is the main selling point. OneDrive is a service that takes the files you can save on your computer and stores them securely online. It’s a really easy way to keep your files backed up. And if you ever find yourself with your computer, you can just log into the OneDrive website on any computer and get access to your files. You can even work on your documents.
Office 365 lets you use the Office apps on your smartphone or tablet – Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
If you need to work on a document when you’re away from your computer, you can find it in the OneDrive app, and then open it in an app like Word and make the changes you need. 1 Terabyte is a really generous amount of storage. It’s 1000 Gigabytes, which is more than you can store on most laptops. OneDrive is more cost-effective than most other cloud storage providers.
If you want to get this sort of storage from Dropbox or Google Drive, you’ll have to pay more each year, and OneDrive gives you the benefit of the Office apps too.
Next, you get three extra programs with an Office 365 subscription. Outlook is a popular email client that includes calendars and tasks. The publisher is ideal for print projects such as posters and newsletters. And Access is a powerful database program that lets you store and analyze data. If you were to buy Office Home and Student 2019, then you would have to purchase these apps separately, and each one would cost you an extra $139.99.
So far we’ve been looking at Office on a Windows computer, but what if you have a Mac? Well, Office 365 and Office 2019 are both available for the Mac. In the past, Office for Mac was a very different product to the Windows version, but Microsoft has worked hard to make the Mac offering feel the same as on Windows.
Programs like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneDrive have almost the same features, although you do occasionally find some tools that haven’t quite made their way to the Mac yet. If you’re hoping to you Publisher or Access on the Mac then you’re out of luck – you can still only get them on a Windows computer.
Another factor is whether you’re going to be buying Office for yourself or for the whole family. When we showed you the price of Office 365, that was for Office 365 Personal, which lets you use Office on all your own computer for $69.99 per year.
If you want to share Office with other family members, then you might find it better value to subscribe to Office 365 Home instead now called Microsoft 365 Family, which is $99.99 per year and can be used by up to 6 people. If you buy Office Home & Student 2019, you only get to install it on one PC or Mac, that’s it.
So, with all these factors in mind, which version of Office should you buy? We would recommend you go for Office 365 if you want to use Office on more than one device, if you want to store all your files on OneDrive and if you need any of the extra apps like Outlook, Access, or Publisher. If you’re just getting Office 365 for yourself then you should sign up to Office 365 Personal, but if you want other people in your family to use it then you should get Office 365 Home.
On the other hand, a subscription isn’t for everyone. If you just want Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, you don’t think you’ll need OneDrive o the extra apps, and if you only want to install Office on one computer, then you will save money in the long run if you go for Office Home and Student 2019. Once again for office setup installation visit www.office.com/setup.
Some other tips that will help you to decide which Office should you buy.
- If you subscribe to Office 365 you get Skype features – it’s free to call people on Skype, but if you want to phone mobiles or landlines you have to pay for your calls, and it turns out that if you have Office 365, they give you 60 minutes of Skype calls each month.
- If you subscribe to Office 365 then you’ll always get the latest feature updates, whereas if you buy Office 2019 then it won’t get any of the new features that come out. If you want new features in the future then you might have to wait until Office 2022 comes out, we guess that’s what the next version will be called.
Hopefully, this article helped you decide which version of Office you’d like to buy.