Microsoft offers half-price Office to entice users of older versions

New promotion offers a year of Office for $35

One of the challenges Microsoft faces is that some people haven't upgraded their Office suite for several years, despite the company releasing new versions.

People pay a relatively large sum for access to apps like Word and Excel, and once they have the functionality they need, there's little incentive to upgrade. It makes sense from a consumer standpoint, but it means Microsoft isn't making as much money as it could from the widespread use of Office. 

That could be the impetus behind a promotion Microsoft announced Tuesday: people who have Windows 10 on their computer but are still running Office 2010 or earlier can now get a one-year Office 365 Personal subscription for US$35. That's half the price Microsoft usually charges for the Personal package, which lets users install its productivity suite on one tablet, one computer and one phone.

It comes the same day that Microsoft launched Office 2016, the latest update to its productivity suite. The update includes a variety of new features like integration with Bing search and a "Tell Me" search box that helps people find functionality inside the Office apps without having to comb through a maze of menus.

What's more, the update enhances collaboration between Office users. One of the marquee features is real-time co-authoring in Word's desktop app, which lets multiple people work on the same document at the same time and see the edits of other users in real time. The success of that feature relies on people using Office 2016, which means it's in Microsoft's interest to get more people onto Office 365. 

Of course, the promotion is only good for a year -- users have to pay the full $70 for an Office 365 Personal subscription once their promotional period is up. It's not clear when the deal will end, either, though it seems unlikely that Microsoft will keep it around forever. 

It's not clear how many new Office 365 users Microsoft will manage to snag with the promotion, but it could help boost the number of users who pay for a subscription, and therefore keep feeding Microsoft's annual revenue, rather than forking over a lump sum when they feel like upgrading.

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Microsoft

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Blair Hanley Frank

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Mobile

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?