Microsoft recently released Office 365 Small Business Premium, the latest version of their ubiquitous Office software suite. Office 365 is Microsoft’s online version of Office geared toward collaboration. While Office 2013, the newest version of the traditional app-based suite, has been available for some time, businesses interested in the cloud-based Office 365 had to wait a bit longer.
For a monthly fee per user, Office 365 offers online access to Word, Outlook and Excel and allows access to always up-to-date versions of their offline apps–Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint and more. This allows users to use the more powerful offline apps at their desk and easily switch to the online apps while traveling or when collaborating with other users.
Office 365 Small Business Premium includes:
Traditional, offline applications–You’ll always have access to the latest desktop versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, Lync and Access.
Ability to use Office in Windows, OS X or on a Windows tablet.
Ability to use your copy of Office on any Windows 7 or 8 computer with an internet connection–from anywhere.
The online services you’ll receive as part of the added Office 365 functionality include:
Hosted email service using Outlook.com, which includes a 25 GB inbox per user.
Ability to create and host your own website, hosting fees included.
Team Sites, which allow you to share documents and collaborate with your coworkers.
Microsoft has stated that it will not analyze or otherwise use your documents or emails in order to provide advertising recommendations. This is a particularly sensitive area for business users who are considering cloud-based solutions. Microsoft also backs their Office 365 service with a guaranteed 99.9% uptime guarantee.
Before making any decision about whether or not Office 365 or other cloud-based solution is right for you, we at Minneapolis-based OAC Technology recommend that you confer with an IT professional to make sure you’re making a decision that’s right for your business. We offer IT and Network Support to small- and medium-sized businesses with one goal in mind: Make IT work.