Microsoft Office 365: With Greater Productivity and Accessibility

August 27th, 2013

Microsoft Office 365 is the latest offering from Microsoft. Microsoft Office 365 is a subscription based suite offering easy to administer business class IT services. It has the capacity to run up to 5 PC’s and Macs per household.

Microsoft Office 365 was first announced by Microsoft in October 2010, starting with private beta leading to public beta by April 2011 and general launch on June 28, 2011. An updated version of Office 2013 was launched on February 27, 2013. This updated version comes with new plans such as Small Business Premium, ProPlus and Midsize Premium. Apart from this the server components are updated to their respective 2013 versions. Microsoft Office 365 comes with number of services and products. All the components of Microsoft Office 365 can be configured and managed through an online portal; also users can be added manually or from local Active Directory Federation Services or can be imported manually from a CSV file. Microsoft Office 365 combines its existing online services with up to date SharePoint (for internal social networking), Lync (conferencing, VOIP, for communication) and cloud service incorporating Exchange Server. Lync Online communication service can be automated remotely with Microsoft Office 365 using PowerShell scripting. Also it manages hosted voicemail policies and Exchange Unified Messaging.

With Microsoft Office 365, one can easily access all MS files like Word, Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint, Publisher, Outlook and Access. This service allows more than one PC or MAC to be synced. Also Microsoft offers additional 20GB Premium SkyDrive Storage to boost sales. The Office 365 platform uses a rolling release model with updated online components of the service which are provided once per quarter. Like Microsoft Office 2013, minor and incremental updates by means of the streaming system are provided on periodic basis to all Office 365 users say Kurt DelBene, Microsoft Office Division Head.

Depending on the market segments and aimed at different consumer needs Microsoft Office 365 is available in a number of different subscription plans providing different sets of features at different prices. Some of the plans like University plan were targeted focusing on users going to post-secondary education; Home premium plan was for home users. For mainstream consumers who wish to install Office on multiple computers, these new plans offer access to the Office 2013 for more than four computers with sixty minutes of Skype calls monthly and expanded SkyDrive storage. Microsoft with these new offerings started Microsoft Office 365 subscriptions with the help of retail outlets combined with non-subscription-based, normal editions of Office 2013. Microsoft Office 365 allows virtual anywhere access to all the Microsoft tools on which one can rely with easy to administer business-class IT services. Microsoft Office 365 is compliant with the European Union’s Data Protection Directive, ISO/IEC 27001 security standards and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act for health care environments in the United States. A new "Trust Center" portal has been launched by Microsoft, which offers customers more inside about its security practices and privacy policies.

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