On April 21st of this year, Microsoft made the big decision to turn its beloved brand Office 365 into Microsoft 365. This name change accompanies a recent shift in user behaviour, which has seen Microsoft’s collaboration services grow in popularity as digital and remote working increasingly becomes the norm. Where the original Office 365 suite was loved for email and the usual productivity apps, now services like Teams and tools for mobility and security are the reason businesses are looking to Microsoft to stay productive and connected. Microsoft itself has said the new naming convention is “more reflective of the range of features and benefits in the subscription, to meet the unique needs of individuals and businesses”. By simply changing the word “Office” to “Microsoft”, all these productivity services have been encompassed under a single unified brand.
Aside from a name change, what else is different? Is the subscription still the Office 365 we’re familiar with, or has it transformed into something new?
We’re here to take you through all of the important changes you need to know about so you’re completely clued up when it comes to the Office 365 versus Microsoft 365 debate.
How do the plans differ?
Microsoft 365 includes everything you have come to expect from Office 365. That in mind, the only real change to your plan will be a new name.
The plans are as follows:
- For home – Family and Personal
- For business – Basic, Standard, Premium, and Apps for business
- For enterprise – E3, E5, F1, and Apps for enterprise
You will notice the enterprise offerings have stayed exactly the same, with the addition of Apps for enterprise which was previously Office 365 ProPlus. All apps will still be available on Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.
Are there any new features I can expect?
Microsoft 365 builds upon Office 365 with more tools, smarter tech, and greater efficiency with aims to help people and businesses “achieve more”. As such, the changeover comes with a range of new features that augment the platforms you’re already familiar with:
1. Microsoft Editor
Available across both Word and Outlook, this nifty new tool harnesses artificial intelligence (AI) to help you improve your writing style. Offering suggestions such as phrasing alternatives, grammar hints, and even entire sentence rewrites, it enhances your skill so you can achieve the best possible output. What’s more, its plagiarism checker sees you’re using and citing references correctly.
2. A better Teams experience
Microsoft has been making lots of great changes to Teams in recent times, particularly as the pandemic continues to persist. From Teams-enabled devices in shared spaces to a new “Together” mode, Teams is really becoming one of the go-to platforms for users to overcome the challenges presented by the crisis. As the tool continues to evolve, it will undoubtably play an instrumental role in shaping what is fast becoming the new normal.
3. Become a PowerPoint Pro
PowerPoint, too, has received some considerable upgrades. PowerPoint Designer helps businesses transform their presentations with one click thanks to over 200 templates and 8,000 images. But it’s PowerPoint Presenter Coach that’s the most impressive – it will assist you in rehearsing and refining your presentation, even to the extent of calling out any speaker habits you need to be aware of.
Microsoft’s personal productivity assistant, Cortana, now helps you better coordinate meetings by reviewing each invited attendee’s schedule and selecting a time that suits everyone. It can also read your Outlook emails out loud to you on a mobile device so you can stay on top of things even while on the move.
That’s only a small taste of what the change to Microsoft 365 is bringing to users – there is a lot more on offer from the productivity platform.
Will my subscription need to change?
If you’re already an Office 365 user, you don’t need to worry about your subscription changing. In fact, Office 365 plans automatically update to Microsoft 365 with no required action from you, and no cost change either. You won’t need to reinstall software or purchase another subscription – everything is done for you.
For those looking to start out with Microsoft 365, this couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is select the plan that’s right for you and decide on whether you would like a monthly or yearly subscription. It really is that simple.
All things considered, while the familiar and well-loved Office 365 now has a new name, the changeover to Microsoft 365 has come with some exceptional benefits and exciting prospects for the future. If you would like to learn more about what Microsoft 365 will bring to your business, please get in touch with a member of the team.