Office 365 Overview
Office 365 is the new Microsoft Subscription-based service for Home and Business Users, providing many benefits compared to traditional "per system" licensing.
Office 365 comprises many possible options and products, but for Small Businesses, the two most relevant are:
- Hosted Exchange Server - Providing Corporate-class email services to all sizes of business
- The Latest Microsoft Office Products - Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint and Publisher for up to 5 devices (PC, laptop, tablet, Mac) per user.
Hosted Exchange provides the best possible business-class email for all users, across desktops, laptops and mobile devices with full synchronisation of Inbox, Sent Items, Contacts and Calendar items between all devices. Previously, this required expensive, on-premises "Exchange" servers which were costly to buy and maintain and complex to restore, in the case of failure or data corruption.
Microsoft's Hosted Exchange servers are also resilient against loss of Power and Internet connectivity, with two datacentres in Ireland and Germany and automatic, seemless fail-over in case of issues with either datacentre providing a level of support and resiliance otherwise impossible for small businesses to achieve.
The Microsoft Office Subscription service ensures up to 5 devices per user (Desktop PC, laptop, tablet or Mac) are running the latest versions of the popular Office products such as Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint and Publisher, with a simple per-user monthly subscription. The subscription cost offers a significant cost saving for users with two or more devices, and even with a single device, the subscription is transferrable to a new device, unlike traditional "Per device" licensing options where a new PC requires the purchase of another copy of Microsoft Office.