Pay once, use 5 years Office on way to Mac
You may welcome that Microsoft has finally announced plans to sell a standalone, pay once, use for as long as you can version of Microsoft Office for the millions of users who need to use the applications but don’t want to be committed to a subscription.
Buy once, use for five years
Many of us (me included) use Microsoft 365, which provides access to all your apps, OneDrive, Skype and more and works across almost all your devices, so you can work in Word on your Mac, iPad, iPhone and even online.
The problem is that lots of people needed these apps (because so many businesses have standardized around use of them) who just didn’t need a monthly or annual fee. That’s what Microsoft Office 2021 will provide. It will be supported for five years, cost as much as Office 2019, and is being positioned as a product for users who don’t need access to Office’s cloud features.
Both Mac and Windows versions will be available and the product, and while it seems inevitable Word, Excel and PowerPoint will be included in the release, we don’t yet know if other apps will be made available there. The company also announced Office LTSC for business users seeking a perpetual license.
More details follow
In a blog, Microsoft said:
“We … plan to release Office 2021 for personal and small business use later this year. Office 2021 will also be supported for five years with the traditional “one-time purchase” model. We do not plan to change the price for these products at the time of the release. We will announce more details about new features included in Office 2021 closer to general availability.”
It’s also not yet clear if Microsoft will offer up the standalone versions of these apps via the Mac App Store. The company does offer downloadable versions of the apps for Microsoft 365 subscribers but doesn’t offer the Office 2019 apps for sale. Be warned, of course, Office Home & Business still costs $249, and you don’t get the mobile apps.
All the same, it is good to see Microsoft continue to maintain parity between Apple and other iterations of Office. In recent months, it has introduced mouse support for iPad and a native version of Office for both Intel and M1 Macs.