My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: How US$6.99 per month Microsoft Office 365 with Word, Excel and PowerPoint goes Freemium Model

Saturday, November 8, 2014

How US$6.99 per month Microsoft Office 365 with Word, Excel and PowerPoint goes Freemium Model

Apple iPhone users and Microsoft Office Lovers, have I got Good News for you!

On Thursday March 27th 2014, Microsoft unleashed the Microsoft Office 365 unto the Apple iPad as I'd reported in my Geezam blog article entitled “Microsoft to introduce Office to Apple iPad on Thursday March 27th 2014”.

However, if you downloaded the Microsoft Office 365 App for the Apple iPad, you could only view documents and not much else. You have to get at least a US$6.99 subscription to Office 365 to do any editing.

Now Microsoft Office 365 has gone Freemiun on the Apple iPhone on Thursday October 6th 2014, with the Office 365 being able to do editing without the need for a subscription as reported in the article “Microsoft: Now you can create, edit on Office mobile apps for free”, published November 6, 2014 6:00 AM PST by Ben Fox Rubin, CNET News and “Editing, Creating Docs Now Free on Office for iPhone, iPad”, published NOVEMBER 6, 2014 11:38AM EST BY STEPHANIE MLOT, PC Magazine.

It’s officially mentioned on the Microsoft Blog article entitled “More Office. Everywhere you need it”, published November 6, 2014 by Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Office John Case, Microsoft Blog. To be precise, Microsoft split Office 365 into three (3) separate Standalone apps:

1.      Microsoft Office Excel
2.      Microsoft Office PowerPoint
3.      Microsoft Office Word

This is pretty big news, as even the Jamaica Observer reported this in their article “Microsoft makes Office free to rival mobile platforms”, published Friday, November 07, 2014, The Jamaica Observer.

It's almost as nifty as the partnership with Dropbox to allow access and editing of Office 365 Documents from Dropbox as explained in the article “Microsoft, Dropbox team up in mobile move”, published November 4, 2014 8:06 AM PST by Mary Jo Foley, CNET News.

Microsoft Office 365 is free - Now One Becomes Three Apps in a Freemium Model

When the Microsoft Office App for the Apple iPad and the Apple iPhone originally came out, I was quite pleased. This means that Microsoft had come to their senses and realized that Apple paying customers was good business.

However, by July 2014, some four (4) month later, Office 365 Personal users got 1TB of Free Microsoft OneDrive Cloud Storage  as stated in my blog article entitled “Microsoft rewards OneDrive users with 15GB Free Storage - How Office 365 users can get 1TB Free Storage as they Chase Google Drive”.

Apparently things weren't going so great since launching Microsoft Office 365 on Thursday March 27th 2014.

Possibly the limited nature of Microsoft without a subscription made many feel cheated, as many other apps existed on the Apple iPhone that could edit Microsoft Word documents and the ones that were purchased were of a lower one-purchase price from the Apple iTunes Store compared to Microsoft’s US$6.99 monthly subscription.

Also, despite the lower level of editing power afforded by Google Docs, their Google Drive gave away 15GB Free Storage since Tuesday April 24th 2012 as noted in my Geezam blog article entitled “Google Drive, the Dropbox clone, now ups the ante to 15GB of Free Storage during Google I/O”.

This would explain why they’ve got more than 240 million active since then! That's way more than Microsoft's Office 365, which albeit fast growing, having reached roughly 1 million subscribers back in June 2013, has since only garnered 7 million subscribers to Office 365 consumer versions as of Tuesday September 30th 2014 as reported in the article “Microsoft Is Giving Away Its Office 365 Mobile Apps” by Nov 6, 2014 9:01 am ET, By  SHIRA OVIDE, The Wall Street Journal.

Office 365 Word, Excel and PowerPoint – Restriction Galore make US$6.99 monthly look like a Deal

The three (3) new apps are entirely unrestricted as noted in “Office for iOS goes freemium: What you need to know”, published November 6, 2014 6:07 AM PST by Jason Parker, CNET News.

You still can't chance text colours and edit charts and tables with the same level of precision. Also, say bye-bye to switching documents between Landscape and Portrait mode in these freebies and the use of Presenter View in the PowerPoint App that allows a preview of notes and upcoming slides.

Not to mention missing out on a Free 1TB of Microsoft OneDrive Storage that now supports 10GB uploadings and sharing of files as stated in my blog article entitled  “Microsoft OneDrive finally Breaks Free – 10GB Uploading and Sharing with drag-and-drop that's great for Streaming larger files”.

Folks, go out and get the three Microsoft Office apps for Word, Excel and PowerPoint. You'll probably like it so much that spending US$6.99 per month on the Office 365 Personal and getting the free 1TB Cloud Storage from Microsoft OneDrive will make you feel like you're on Cloud 9! 

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