Friday, October 1st 2021

Microsoft Reveals Office 2021 Pricing

Although Microsoft announced Office 2021 last month, the pricing was only announced today. As expected, Microsoft has several different versions of Office 2021 on offer and Microsoft 365 will also be updated to Office 2021 for subscribers to the service. Office 2021 will be available on the 5th of October, alongside Windows 11.

If you're looking to upgrade to Office 11, the bad news is that no upgrade pricing was announced and it's not clear if there even will be an upgrade offer. Office Home and Student, which includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Microsoft Teams, will set you back US$149.99, whereas Office Home and Business adds Outlook and "the right" to use the various Office packages for commercial usage, for US$249.99. Microsoft 365 remains at the same price levels. If you're planning to upgrade to Windows 11 and are using office 2013, do note that Microsoft is pulling the plug and you'll have to upgrade to a more recent version of Office.
Source: Microsoft
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106 Comments on Microsoft Reveals Office 2021 Pricing

#51
Easo
windwhirlSwitching from one software to another involves the cost of relearning how to do some stuff. And that cost sometimes is not worth it.

Besides, I doubt a lot of people are immediately switching to the latest and greatest with every release. No, I think most people stick to whatever they bought for years... Or decades, if they can.
Or in case of O365 - you always have the latest and the greatest, which is one of it's selling points.
Sure, enterprise gets options regarding that, but generally it's a thing.
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#52
windwhirl
EasoOr in case of O365 - you always have the latest and the greatest, which is one of it's selling points.
Sure, enterprise gets options regarding that, but generally it's a thing.
Yeah, I was thinking mostly of the standalone versions.

Regarding O365, I actually prefer that for home, since I can pay for it at a hilariously low cost per month and solves the problem of non-genuine software for me, my mom, my sister and my grandmother, plus auto backup to the cloud with 1 TB each. I definitely wouldn't be able to pay all four licenses for standalone versions upfront.

I gotta admit the only thing holding me back before was purely and exclusively Office 2010's ClearType implementation, which was better in my opinion.
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#53
Exilarch
I installed Open Office in 2006 and moved to Libre Office when it got forked. Never looked at Microsoft products since, and I do a lot of office related stuff on work.
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#54
lexluthermiester
ExilarchI installed Open Office in 2006 and moved to Libre Office when it got forked. Never looked at Microsoft products since, and I do a lot of office related stuff on work.
Same, except I made that transition in 2002. While I'm forced to use ms office professionally from time to time, personally, once I saw how excellent and easy to use Open Office was(and still is) I never looked back. Only switched to LibreOffice because of the Ocacle nonsense, but after it went to Apache things went back to being rosy! And then we had two very useful, very stable and competent and free office suites.

Just because msoffice is dominant does not make it better.
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#55
zlobby
MetroidIs microsoft office so much better than free office software available to charge such insane price?
Sadly, no.
The red spiritImagine complaining about MS office. This is probably the least changing software on Earth. I don't think that MS cares much about them anyway as they will have to use Office anyway. So far there hasn't been any serious competitor to Office. LibreOffice doesn't 100% support Office formats and people don't care about it, Apple Pages and etc. are just too shit for anything serious.
That is the root of the issue - MS Office has no real competitor, hence MS don't bother improving it much. Meanwhile the developers of the 'competing' products are not paid nearly enough to produce a decent replacement for MS Office, and they know well what they are up against, i.e. the fact that the majority of companies and government structures are vendor-locked by Microsoft and there is simply no (cheap) option to switch to.
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#56
The red spirit
zlobbyThat is the root of the issue - MS Office has no real competitor, hence MS don't bother improving it much. Meanwhile the developers of the 'competing' products are not paid nearly enough to produce a decent replacement for MS Office, and they know well what they are up against, i.e. the fact that the majority of companies and government structures are vendor-locked by Microsoft and there is simply no (cheap) option to switch to.
And a simple issue is that this is written once software, that is basically impossible to update and improve. I just writes text, edits slides and computes sheets. The core of it just can't change at all, there really isn't any innovations in that stuff. Microsoft managed to monopolize it first and kept a strong grip on that. Good for them, meanwhile the main problem is that they essentially made something basic and essential to everyone, trademarked and put a price on it. I would argue, that something like Office cannot be trademarked at all and any attempts to do that should be prohibited by law. All these solutions like FOSS software or free office suites are not a real solutions, they are just irrelevant software to tackle a problem of copyrighting something that should never be copyrighted in the first place.
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#57
windwhirl
The red spiritThe core of it just can't change at all, there really isn't any innovations in that stuff
I disagree somewhat with that statement. It sure feels like lately there's been little improvement that is worth a cent, but for many years Microsoft invested in Office and actually added a lot of functionality in it. It's just that we're reaching a point where the software is mostly consolidated and has most of the features we can ever think of.
The red spiritMicrosoft managed to monopolize it first and kept a strong grip on that. Good for them, meanwhile the main problem is that they essentially made something basic and essential to everyone, trademarked and put a price on it.
Not really, there are alternatives. The reality is most people don't feel the need to change, so they keep using Microsoft Office (and most of the times probably not even bothering to use anything newer than Office 2003/2007), and companies want support, so they turn to software companies that can provide that support without redirecting everyone to a half-hearted attempt at documentation. Hence Microsoft again, who also provides a bunch of companion services for businesses.
The red spiritI would argue, that something like Office cannot be trademarked at all and any attempts to do that should be prohibited by law.
And that's where you're wrong. The only thing that's copyrighted is the code. Anyone else can implement the same functionality, as long as they don't copy the code from Office (not like they have access to it anyway). Otherwise, how would alternatives like LibreOffice even exist?

Besides, Microsoft threw in and still throws in a lot of money into Office, like it or not. Why should they be stripped of their right to sell their own product in exclusivity?
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#58
mechtech
windwhirlPartially agree. I think people will keep going to buy Office, *BUT* the overwhelming majority of people won't bother buying a new version and will just stick with what they already had unless they really have to upgrade. Like a few here using 20-year-old versions.

To throw in an example, the only real reason we (the accounting firm I work for) switched out of Office 2003 to 2016 is that people kept sending us files in the newer Office formats. So might as well upgrade. But that's about the only reason for it.

Also, I don't think most people care about the "non-commercial use" license restriction on certain Office editions. So I think it's also a matter of an important subset of people thinking "I only need Excel/Word, so I'm getting the Home edition" and not giving a damn about the non-commercial use licensing conditions... I don't think many people outside of corporate read the EULAs anyway.
And nevermind people getting it for cheap from some CD key site.
I think the subscription is a big turn off, at least for personal use. Not sure about corp use. Before you could buy office 2016 home for $250, and get 10 years out of it. Now its about $70-$100/yr subscription, which puts it well over $250 over 10 years. No thanks, especially since you can basically use it for free if you have outlook/hotmail, plus all the other alternatives.
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#59
Prima.Vera
Serious question.
Is there any difference between Office 2016 and this??
I mean there is 0(ZERO) difference between 2016 and 2019 versions too.....
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#60
windwhirl
Prima.VeraSerious question.
Is there any difference between Office 2016 and this??
I mean there is 0(ZERO) difference between 2016 and 2019 versions too.....
If you make full use of everything Office has, maybe. Otherwise, how do you feel about dark mode?

Bah, AFAIK, only Word has full dark mode. Excel doesn't.

For real, though, according to MS blog post, the new features include real-time coauthoring (requires OneDrive) and a bunch of little things, detailed here:
support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/what-s-new-in-office-2021-43848c29-665d-4b1b-bc12-acd2bfb3910a
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#61
TheLostSwede
The red spiritImagine complaining about MS office. This is probably the least changing software on Earth. I don't think that MS cares much about them anyway as they will have to use Office anyway. So far there hasn't been any serious competitor to Office. LibreOffice doesn't 100% support Office formats and people don't care about it, Apple Pages and etc. are just too shit for anything serious.
Google drive?
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#62
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
Prima.VeraSerious question.
Is there any difference between Office 2016 and this??
I mean there is 0(ZERO) difference between 2016 and 2019 versions too.....
There are differences between 2016 and 2019 of course, but they’re minor. Microsoft just needed to make a “new” product to convince mugs to part with their money.

BTW, Outlook is still actually Outlook 2016 and it shows up in the control panel mail icon and I think in About. What a con.
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#63
ThrashZone
Prima.VeraSerious question.
Is there any difference between Office 2016 and this??
I mean there is 0(ZERO) difference between 2016 and 2019 versions too.....
Hi,
2016 is a standalone product like older versions
2019 is cloud linked not sure it has a regular standalone version
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#64
Darmok N Jalad
qubitBTW, Outlook is still actually Outlook 2016 and it shows up in the control panel mail icon and I think in about, what a con.
Sounds like you just found a new feature update for a future upgrade!

In all seriousness, I guess one thing we may have overlooked that’s not technically related to this discussion is MS bringing Office to browsers and mobile devices over the past 5-10 years, especially the iPad, where it works really well for many basic uses. At my work, those handful of documents I share can now be accessed and updated by iPad (which everyone already has for other reasons), which ironically reduces the need for several employees to use/own/lease Windows PCs. That’s perhaps the best benefit of MS365–the ability to use your account on multiple devices, including simply editing from a browser.
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#65
windwhirl
Darmok N JaladSounds like you just found a new feature update for a future upgrade!

In all seriousness, I guess one thing we may have overlooked that’s not technically related to this discussion is MS bringing Office to browsers and mobile devices over the past 5-10 years, especially the iPad, where it works really well for many basic uses. At my work, those handful of documents I share can now be accessed and updated by iPad (which everyone already has for other reasons), which ironically reduces the need for several employees to use/own/lease Windows PCs. That’s perhaps the best benefit of MS365–the ability to use your account on multiple devices, including simply editing from a browser.
Yes, the 365 personal subscription allows use of the full Office suite in 5 devices, unlike the standalone version which can only be used in one device. And the Family plan allows for up to six different users, with up to 5 devices each.
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#66
The red spirit
windwhirlI disagree somewhat with that statement. It sure feels like lately there's been little improvement that is worth a cent, but for many years Microsoft invested in Office and actually added a lot of functionality in it. It's just that we're reaching a point where the software is mostly consolidated and has most of the features we can ever think of.
Ever since 2007, I didn't feels like they added anything meaningful to new Office releases.
windwhirlNot really, there are alternatives. The reality is most people don't feel the need to change, so they keep using Microsoft Office (and most of the times probably not even bothering to use anything newer than Office 2003/2007), and companies want support, so they turn to software companies that can provide that support without redirecting everyone to a half-hearted attempt at documentation. Hence Microsoft again, who also provides a bunch of companion services for businesses.
I disagree. LibreOffice and most Office alternatives still break doc and docx files. I'm also sure that for scientific use, Libre and others just don't have all commands and functions needed.
windwhirlAnd that's where you're wrong. The only thing that's copyrighted is the code. Anyone else can implement the same functionality, as long as they don't copy the code from Office (not like they have access to it anyway).
That's just a fancy way of saying that Office is copyrighted. If doc, docx, xls, xlsx aren't free, then you can't really say that anyone can just make their own Office with same quality. Technically that is possible, but nobody will take chances of some of their work files being occasionally borked. It's not even that Office itself such a pain, but proprietary MS formats. Obviously switching from MS, which is worldwide standard at this point, is painful and most alternatives are simply worse.
windwhirlOtherwise, how would alternatives like LibreOffice even exist?
Never underestimate linux fanboys.
windwhirlBesides, Microsoft threw in and still throws in a lot of money into Office, like it or not. Why should they be stripped of their right to sell their own product in exclusivity?
Not real copyrights (office is too generic to be copyrightable)? Anti monopoly laws?
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#67
ThrashZone
Hi,
Subscription is better known as a yearly cash cow.
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#68
CrAsHnBuRnXp
TheLostSwedeToo many complaints? Or too few Microsoft 365 customers?
People dont want to pay a subscription fee for office. That was just dumb on MS's part to begin with.
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#69
Splinterdog
My brother subscribes to Office 365 and he invited both my wife and me to join the family plan, so we're lucky enough to take advantage of this. We're both heavy users of Office, not to mention the 1TB storage, which is invaluable.
Chuffed to bits, actually.
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#70
windwhirl
CrAsHnBuRnXpPeople dont want to pay a subscription fee for office. That was just dumb on MS's part to begin with.
Actually, these days the subscription service brings in more revenue than traditional licensing
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#71
CrAsHnBuRnXp
windwhirlActually, these days the subscription service brings in more revenue than traditional licensing
Business or consumer?
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#72
Splinterdog
CrAsHnBuRnXpPeople dont want to pay a subscription fee for office. That was just dumb on MS's part to begin with.
Quite the opposite of dumb. A sound business decision because you end up with regular cashflow.
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#73
windwhirl
The red spiritEver since 2007, I didn't feels like they added anything meaningful to new Office releases.
Can't blame you. By that point most of the changes were mostly niche functions that not everyone uses or improvements on existing ones. With maybe one or two that saw relatively massive adoption.
The red spiritNot real copyrights (office is too generic to be copyrightable)? Anti monopoly laws?
Microsoft really isn't stopping people from using different software suites, which is the whole point of anti-monopoly laws. And last I heard there was an estimate of some 200 million LibreOffice users in the world. Not a small amount. Though take it with a grain of salt, as that information came from a report commissioned by the Document Foundation (which is the developer of LibreOffice)
CrAsHnBuRnXpBusiness or consumer?
Forget I said anything. I can't find the hard numbers in the IR reports. There's the YoY growth in percentages, but that's useless without the revenue numbers.
They do say that growth has been driven mostly by 365 subscriptions and that traditional licensing is either declining or slowing down, but again, that's useless without knowing how much of the revenue is traditional licensing and how much is 365. The numbers below are from FY2021-Q4 (FY ending on June 30, btw) and are YoY (so, vs FY2020-Q4)
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#74
zlobby
windwhirlYes, the 365 personal subscription allows use of the full Office suite in 5 devices, unlike the standalone version which can only be used in one device. And the Family plan allows for up to six different users, with up to 5 devices each.
Varies by region. In some you can only use it on 1 PC. Talk about cons, eh?
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#75
windwhirl
zlobbyVaries by region. In some you can only use it on 1 PC. Talk about cons, eh?
Mind sharing in which regions that happens? That's rather strange.
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