Ever wondered what the difference is between Microsoft 365 and Office 2019?
For starters, don’t let the name similarity fool you.
Although both give you access to the desktop apps we’re familiar with (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.), many aspects set one apart from the other.
Lean in, my friend. After reading this post, you’ll be able to identify which one will help your business make a big leap forward.
Let’s dive in.
Microsoft 365 is Microsoft’s subscription service offering the most updated modern productivity tools with the latest core features to make your life easier. It provides web-based access to the traditional apps (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint), as well as other web-based apps and services like Teams, Yammer, Stream, and Sway, to name a few.
- All plans include up to 1TB cloud storage (about 300,000 images or 1,000,000 documents)
- Each user can install it on five PCs or Macs, five tablets and five mobile devices
- Users can share their subscription with up to six family members (depending on their subscription plan)
- Easy user management with features that help you add, remove, and administer Office 365 accounts
- Regular security updates, improvements, and access to the latest features
- Ongoing tech support and security fixes
- No need to pay upfront: choose between monthly or annual payment and save by paying for a full year
- Free monthly credits to make calls to landlines using Skype
- New changes can be overwhelming
- You may pay for unnecessary features
Who should buy Office 365?
Given the rich amount of cloud-based tools, features, and functionalities, Office 365 enables a new way of working, increasing productivity in the workplace. It’s ideal for companies that want to take their business several notches higher and enjoy the latest features and security updates along with ongoing tech support.
Wondering how you can double your margins with Microsoft 365? Read our Ultimate MSP Bundling Cookbook
Office 2019 follows Office 2016, and it’s the standalone version of the suite of office apps. It requires a single purchase with upfront payment for one PC or Mac—and you own the copy forever.
- Pay once, use forever
- In the long run, it will be cheaper to own the license rather than subscribe
- One device per license
- Only runs on Windows 10 and macOS
- You only get this version without upgrade options (you’ll have to buy it again at full price when the next version comes out)
- Mainstream support is limited to 5 years
- Installation requires some know-how
- Limited security updates
Who should buy Office 2019?
Office 2019 is designed for commercial customers who aren’t ready to join the cloud and only need the must-have apps: Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, and Word. If you plan to install the suite on one device and opt for a more traditional experience, Office 2019 is a good bet.
What’s the difference between Microsoft 365 and Office 2019?
Check out the main differences between the two products to help you decide which one suits you best.
#1 The payment model
First things first: you buy Office 2019, and you subscribe to Office 365.
In other words, you make a one-time purchase vs. you pay a monthly or yearly subscription.
#2 The range of products and services
When you buy Office 2019, you get the classic Office apps like Excel, Word, and PowerPoint.
Subscribing to Office 365 means you’ll enjoy the fantastic array of cloud- and AI-based features you can use on any device.
#3 The update frequency and functionality
Office 2019 only gets security updates and no new features.
With Office 365, you’ll get monthly quality updates, so your version will always be improving. You also enjoy additional functionality (i.e., PowerPoint Designer tool uses AI to analyze your content, suggesting better layouts, so you look more professional.)
Jared Spataro, Microsoft 365 Corporate Vice President, picked his favorite a long time ago:
“Office 365 includes fully-installed Office applications—the latest versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. But those apps keep getting better over time, with new capabilities delivered every month. Most importantly, Office 365 is connected to the cloud, so you can access your content from any device, coauthor with anyone in real-time (regardless of whether or not they’ve purchased a copy of Office) and use the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to create impactful content with less effort.
Here’s what he has to say about Office 2019:
“On the flip side, Office 2019 also delivers full installs of the Office apps we know and love—but they’re “frozen in time.” They don’t ever get updated with new features, and they’re not cloud-connected. Also, Office 2019 doesn’t support real-time coauthoring across apps, and it doesn’t have the amazing AI-powered capabilities that come with Office 365.”
Over to you
There’s no doubt Microsoft wants you to go for Microsoft 365. But at the end of the day, you’ll have to assess your own needs before making a purchasing decision. To do so, ask yourself how you plan to use the tools and what’s your budget.
If you want to move with the times, we recommend switching your staff to a modern workplace on Microsoft 365. You’ll get better business results if your users have access to the latest productivity tools.
** This blog was edited on May 13, 2020