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Get Started with Office 365

Find the right subscription

Office 365 is an SaaS suite. As such, it is subscription-based (also known as license-based). Microsoft offers various subscription plans to fit your needs. All Office 365 plans are billed monthly for the total number of users.

To determine which subscription option is right for your business, you must first identify your business needs. Then it’s a matter of determining which Office 365 features will help you meet those needs. With your subscription, you pay for only those features you need and that will deliver the most for your business right now. You can always upgrade (or downgrade) your subscription if needed.

All Office 365 subscriptions offer the following:

  • A 99.9-percent financially backed uptime guarantee That is, the servers on which the Office 365 services are hosted are guaranteed to be up and running 99.9 percent of the time.
  • Phone and web support Get help with critical issues 24 hours a day, seven days a week, not just during regular business hours.
  • A community forum Use this to look up information and work with other users to find quick answers.

There are two primary subscription groups:

  • Office 365 Business The options in this group are meant for organizations that have fewer than 300 users.
  • Office 365 Enterprise Office 365 Enterprise does not have a user limit.

Office 365 Business subscription options for small and medium organizations

The Office 365 Business subscription group offers the following options:

  • Office 365 Business Essentials
  • Office 365 Business
  • Office 365 Business Premium

Table 2-1 presents all the Office 365 Business subscription options and their corresponding features.

Table 2-1 Office 365 Business subscription options

Feature

Office 365 Business Essentials

Office 365 Business

Office 365 Business Premium

Full, installed Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, and OneNote) on up to five PCs or Macs per user

X

X

Office Mobile apps on up to five Windows Phone, Android, or iOS (Apple) tablets and phones per user

X

X

Online versions of Office, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint

X

X

X

File storage and sharing on OneDrive for Business with 1 terabyte (TB) of storage per user

X

X

X

Business class email, calendar, and contacts with a 50-gigabyte (GB) inbox

X

X

X

Unlimited online meetings, instant messaging (IM), and video conferencing

X

X

An intranet site for your teams, with customizable security settings

X

X

A corporate social network (Yammer) to help employees collaborate across departments

X

X

Personalized search and discovery

X

X

Using the 30-day trial

Not ready to make a decision about which subscription option is right for you? Don’t worry. Microsoft offers a free 30-day trial for some subscription options. To use it, go to aka.ms/office365plan, click the appropriate Free Trial link near the bottom of the page, and follow the directions in this book’s introduction to set everything up.