Microsoft 365 offers a one-stop subscription to Office and Windows

More than a few times, folks around here have speculated about Microsoft making its Windows OS available to consumers through a subscription. As it turns out, those speculations were mostly correct. The company has taken the wraps off of Microsoft 365, its new subscription service designed for enterprises of all sizes.

Microsoft 365 includes Office 365 Enterprise, Windows 10 Enterprise, and Enterprise Mobility + Security. There are a few variations of the subscription plan. Microsoft 365 Business is designed for organizations with 300 or fewer users. Microsoft wants to make IT tasks easier and more centralized for businesses of all sizes, and with Microsoft 365 busineses will be able to set up and manage employee devices from a single dedicated console. Microsoft will also debut new small-business-oriented marketing, expense-tracking, and invoicing tools with Office 365 Business, as well.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise 365 is targeted at large organizations, and will be available in two tiers: Microsoft 365 E3 and Microsoft 365 E5. It replaces the popular Secure Productive Enterprise suite. In addition to the expected suite of productivity apps, the Enterprise variants of Microsoft 365 provide more communication tools and more robust security options. Microsoft 365 E3, for example, includes PSTN conferencing and Microsoft's Cloud PBX software, which replaces phone systems with calling features integrated into Skype for Business.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise will be available for purchase starting in August. Organizations interested in a quote will have to contact Microsoft directly. A "public preview" of Microsoft 365 Business will start in August, and worldwide availability will begin sometime thereafter in the fall. Microsoft 365 Business will carry a price tag of $20 a month for every connected user.

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    • EV42TMAN
    • 2 years ago

    Over 4 years ago I started working for a MSP and doing consulting work for them. At that time my original view it was better to buy software because then you would own it for forever. But after talking to the business owners and decision makers, a lot of businesses prefer the subscription model because it turns multiple large capital purchases into smaller monthly operating costs and makes accounting more predictable.

    Buying a copy of windows or office isn’t a big deal its a couple hundred dollars, but for a company to buy 50, 100, or (pick your very large number) the cost adds up pretty quickly.

    Aside from the Windows OS, Office 365 is actually a really good deal for SMB businesses. $12 per month per user gets a user an up to date copy of office, access to sharepoint, 1tb of onedrive storage, and exchange mailbox. Versus if a company wants to run their own exchange server then the business has to by a server, a copy of Windows Server ($600-800), Exchange Server 2016 Standard ($400-600), Exchange CALs ($150 per user), and office ($200-700 per user). Plus some one on staff to deploy it correct or pay some one at $150 hour to deploy it. This also assumes that the company already has Windows User cals as well.

    Plus there is the ongoing costs of backup and recovery and Exchange maintenance.

    I my opinion I’m glad a lot of my clients have gone to Office 365 for email because now I don’t have to do exchange migrations or maintenance.

    • NovusBogus
    • 2 years ago

    If this offers a reliability and stability comparable to Office 365, I pity da fool who takes them up on the offer.

      • LoneWolf15
      • 2 years ago

      If it offers Win10 Enterprise, I don’t. You can eliminate most telemetry that way, advertising in Windows Explorer, disable Cortana via policy, and do a lot of things you can’t do with Win10 Home/Pro.

      Considering how licensing is a nightmare with Microsoft, if this makes workstation licensing easy, then businesses will jump at it if the pricing is fair.

    • Convert
    • 2 years ago

    We are an MSP so we’ve been on the Office365 train for a long time. It has been a very bumpy ride, and sometimes very painful. They have worked out a lot of the bugs, but they are always making changes and creating new problems. While the people behind the scenes are very smart, it comes off like it’s run by that one IT guy who knows just enough to get himself into trouble.

    Last week our clients started experiencing a new bug where O365 customers emailing other O365 customers started receiving all their attachments as .dat files. Like I said, it’s always a new game of whac-a-mole with them.

    The office programs themselves are fine. We have had lots of problems dealing with the online installer in the past but it seems pretty good now. My only complaint here is that it doesn’t install into the normal directory, so all the specialized third party medical software that looks to a hard coded directory for Office won’t work with it.

      • bthylafh
      • 2 years ago

      Joy. Guess what my workplace is planning on switching to… right after they commissioned a major piece of s/w made by Oracle.

        • psuedonymous
        • 2 years ago

        [quote<]right after they commissioned a major piece of s/w made by Oracle[/quote<]At least they dodged a bullet there!

          • bthylafh
          • 2 years ago

          No, we’re using the Orrible stuff too, for the long term.

            • Convert
            • 2 years ago

            Hah, my co-worker calls it Horracle.

      • LoneWolf15
      • 2 years ago

      That .DAT bug exists on-prem too. It’s been around for years (back to Office 2010, but doesn’t always rear its head. It is, however, fixable. Here’s the fix for O365.

      [url<]http://www.deargeek.co.uk/2013/11/how-to-stop-office-365-sending-those-pesky-winmail-dat-attachments/[/url<]

    • ronch
    • 2 years ago

    Didn’t realize my office suite is already 10 years old!! Still on Office 2007. Been wanting to switch to LibreOffice but it just keeps crashing when I open my files. Dunno why. Even after a complete reformat the problem persists.

      • MOSFET
      • 2 years ago

      [b<][i<]but free software is the best![/i<][/b<] sorry couldn't resist

        • ronch
        • 2 years ago

        Yeah, free is cool… if it works well enough.

    • albundy
    • 2 years ago

    i told my boss that i would quit if they installed this garbage. i had the unfortunate opportunity to use it at another job. it constantly crashes. i cant even count how many times i’ve lost work in excel because of it.

      • demani
      • 2 years ago

      What? Windows? OrOffice? Were you running on Insider ring or something?

      • Captain Ned
      • 2 years ago

      Were you using cloud or native install? My office runs it (365/2016) with no difficulties, but the Office executables live on each machine and we don’t store to any of MS’ clouds.

      If you’re having Outlook issues, go to Control Panel > Credential Manager > Windows Credentials > Generic Credentials. Delete each one in turn, then re-authenticate (assuming it’s all Exchange-based). It’s what our office does if/when forced password changes don’t take and it works every time until the next PW change. Not sure if that’s the MS answer, but it’s always worked and I’ve yet to lose any stored e-mail even though I run in CEM on three different boxen.

      Of course, this is worth exactly what you paid for it.

        • albundy
        • 2 years ago

        what IT wanted to install was cloud based ms office. I asked and received office 2016, which so far has been great. some of the other staff, not so lucky.

      • JalaleenRumi
      • 2 years ago

      Did you find a new job or still looking?

      • kruky
      • 2 years ago

      If u’re the only one having problems maybe it’s you not them… just saying.

    • odizzido
    • 2 years ago

    Next stage in the MS subscription only OS will be to offer the OS subscription as a stand alone “service”.

      • LoneWolf15
      • 2 years ago

      Enterprise pretty much is a subscription already. Note this is specifically the Enterprise environment.

    • Slinky
    • 2 years ago

    [quote<] Microsoft 365 Enterprise 365 [/quote<] One to many 365's? Otherwise it's a bit of a long-winded mouthful.

      • Duct Tape Dude
      • 2 years ago

      Yeah, should just be Microsoft 730.

      • Shobai
      • 2 years ago

      I was really hoping for glorious agglomerations like

      [quote<]Microsoft 365 Office 365 Enterprise[/quote<]

        • bthylafh
        • 2 years ago

        Needs more Xes. Microsoft X365XTX.

        • psuedonymous
        • 2 years ago

        xX365Microsoft365Xx

          • Welch
          • 2 years ago

          Too reminiscent of the MSN chat days. Microsoft wants to distance itself from that.

      • arunphilip
      • 2 years ago

      Won’t somebody think of the leap years?!

        • Zizy
        • 2 years ago

        Yeah well they would first need to make it work on leap years.

    • Sargent Duck
    • 2 years ago

    My company recently switched from Outlook 2016 to Outlook 365.

    Although for the *most* part it’s been relatively seamless, dealing with delayed emails (often times upwards of 1/2 hour in worst cases) has become normal and is now *just accepted*.

    I can only imagine the pain if Windows 365 were to face any delays…

      • odizzido
      • 2 years ago

      Yeah the windows 10 mail program is worse than the W7 version that came before it. It has trouble with some attachments and they just won’t download. It’s pretty irritating. In many ways W10 is a downgrade from W7 :\

      • curtisb
      • 2 years ago

      Try turning off Cached Exchange Mode? It’s in the Outlook profile properties. That will force Outlook to work on Online Mode. I’m not sure what the latency will be like with Office 365…that depends on your company’s Internet connection.

        • etana
        • 2 years ago

        In my office that’s a guaranteed way to get Outlook to crash several times a day. Also makes switching between mailboxes excruciatingly slow,

          • curtisb
          • 2 years ago

          We’ve always turned off cached mode…in fact, we have a GPO that forces it off. However, our Exchange Server is on prem.

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