Office 2019 vs. Office 365: What’s Really Happening

Posted on September 25, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Microsoft 365, Office, Office 365 with 72 Comments

Microsoft’s release of Office 2019 this week has triggered a bit of confusion in the user community. Your questions are understandable, as this release marks an important change in the way that Microsoft makes and sells its office productivity solutions.

And if this release is confusing to you, take heart: It’s confusing to just about everyone, myself included. So I spoke with Microsoft corporate vice president Jared Spataro at the software giant’s Ignite 2018 conference. And he neatly cleared up the confusion.

Office 2019 is the latest version of Microsoft’s standalone Office productivity suite. It’s what the firm now calls the “perpetual” version of Office, or what old-timers like myself might still call “on-premises.” And that’s for good reason: As Spataro told me, Office 2019 doesn’t offer any of the cloud-connected features that Office 365 subscribers would see using the exact same apps. Thus, it is, in fact, a subset of Microsoft Office compared to the versions of the suite—or, the applications—that Office 365 subscribers see.

This is an important distinction: For the first time ever, a major new release of Microsoft Office provides less functionality than what current users—in this case, Office 365 subscribers—already have access to.

This isn’t the way Microsoft markets the product, of course. And it’s fair to say that Office 2019—e.g. the perpetual version of Microsoft Office—provides more functionality than its predecessor, Office 2016.

For Office 365, Microsoft quietly dropped the year-based version numbers from the Office desktop applications. You can see this when you start up Word or one of the other applications: The about box that pops up while it loads will read “Office 365” rather than the version number (like “2016” or “2019”).

And this isn’t marketing. At its core, the version of, say, Word that you launch as a perpetual customer (Word 2016 or 2019) is the same as the version you launch as an Office 365 subscriber. But the Office 365 version of the app includes far more features. And if you’re paying attention to this part of the Microsoft ecosystem, as I do, you know that it includes far more features: Microsoft adds tons of new capabilities to its Office 365 apps—across PC and Mac desktops, mobile, web, and online services—every single month. It makes the Windows 10 update schedule look slow by comparison.

“We’ve evolved Office 365 to address how customers work today,” Mr. Spataro told me. “They want to use the bigger screens on PCs or Macs for creation, but they also want to work offline, and on mobile devices. So we’re adapting Office to take advantage of each device type and scenario.”

I’ve long described Office 365 as a “no-brainer” for individuals (Office 365 Personal), families (Office 365 Home), and businesses of all sizes and types (Office 365 commercial). In the beginning, this assessment was tied to two major advantages: The 1 TB of OneDrive-based storage that each customer receives and liberal access to the Office desktop applications and mobile/web apps across multiple devices.

But over the past year or two, the rapid addition of new cloud-connected features, many of which taking advantage of Microsoft’s unique AI prowess, has tipped the scales. So Office 365 is absolutely still a no-brainer. But now it’s for three primary reasons, not two. And thanks to this rapid release schedule, which includes routine quality updates in addition to the new features, Office 365 customers are also more secure as well.

But back to Office 2019 and the confusion that this release has triggered.

Office 2019 provides all of the fixes and non-cloud updates that Microsoft has added to Office 2016 over the past three years and packages them in a more traditional form. It’s aimed at those customers—commercial first, but a version for consumers is coming soon, too—that will only use the product on a single PC and in “air gap” scenarios in which the PC is rarely or even never online.

And it’s not about addressing a Luddite segment of the audience. There are customers who need to use Office in situations in which they’d like to be online but cannot for various reasons. Submarines, perhaps, or oil platforms.

Most surprisingly, Office 2019 isn’t the end of the line, either. Contrary to my suspicions, Microsoft isn’t being wishy-washy about whether or not it will release an Office 2022 (or whatever).

“We will do another perpetual release of Office,” Spataro told me. “We will absolutely do more.”

So the big change with Office 2019, really, is that Microsoft is redefining what the version numbers mean. If you do see a version number—2019, in this case—then you’re looking at a perpetual or on-premises version of Office that does not benefit from the amazing array of cloud- and AI-based features that Microsoft is adding for Office 365 customers. You’re looking at less, not more.

And this means that Office 365 subscribers are already using versions of Word and the other Office desktop applications that are superior in every way to what’s available in Office 2019. You’re not going to get an Office 2019 update on Office 365. You’re just going to continue getting more functional and quality updates to Office. Every single month.

Welcome to the new Office.

 

Tagged with

Join the discussion!

BECOME A THURROTT MEMBER:

Don't have a login but want to join the conversation? Become a Thurrott Premium or Basic User to participate

Register
Comments (72)

72 responses to “Office 2019 vs. Office 365: What’s Really Happening”

  1. Ron F

    This need to be clarified. Microsoft should clearly state what functionalities are only available on Office 365 to allow customers to better evaluate what they need.

  2. robsanders247

    one additional thing, Office 2019 was needed to support customers running RDSH on Windows Server 2016. Before Microsoft relaxed the timelines, Office ProPlus would not be supported on that platform from 2020 onwards. And knowing how long it takes for many organizations to move to a newer version or architecture (as at that time there was no RDSH role in the Server 2019 TP and we were all waiting on what turned out to be Windows Virtual Desktops on Azure), giving those customers an upgraded Office experience was much needed.


    The move to the cloud model makes total sense for most organizations. IT teams are spending too much time on keeping the lights on and not enough on innovation to provide their organization with a competitive advantage. If I were a CIO or CTO, I wouldn’t like my teams to be busy with optimizing an Exchange database, but rather provide new ways to increase productivity. Or do something about that average -25 NPS score that employees rate the service from their IT teams with. Moving backend systems to cloud, orchestrating workloads to run where they should run, that’s providing a lot of benefits to almost every customer I speak with on a daily basis.

  3. ianhead

    I was sad to see that Office 2019 customers will miss out on the new-look and simplified ribbons. At a glance, Office 2016 and 2019 look completely identical to each other, which isn't something that's ever been the case before between perpetual releases.

  4. astronout

    We all know that under the hood there were no differences between Office 365 and Office 2016. I'm wonder about the changed system requirements for Office 2019: only Windows 10 and Windows Server 2019 are supported. What does this mean for Office 365? Is Microsoft planning on limiting the system support for that too in the near future?

  5. G_Autumn

    I am a heavy user of Office 365 and 2016 (at work and at home, respectively) and to me Office 365 offers no benefits whatsoever.


    There will certainly be people who can benefit from the extra features that 365 offers, yet no amount of interconnectivity or 'AI prowess' is ever going to write my papers or e-mails for me.


    To say that Office 365 is a 'no-brainer' is, I think, a big overstatement.

  6. sandip2805

    I installed Libre Office a long time ago, better than Office in every aspect. Microsoft will eventually drop Office 2019 and same will happen with Windows 10. COMPLETE EXCEL 2016 – MICROSOFT EXCEL BEGINNER TO ADVANCED DOWNLOAD

    • blods

      In reply to sandip2805:

      Again a ludicrous comment from someone who obviously doesnt understand how most large organizations use Office.

      Most modern companies are using the document management, content management, encryption, workflows, approvals, version control, templating, co-authoring, team integration, power apps etc. etc. etc.


      Your comment is like someone criticising a ship - because you purchased yourself a rubber dingy - Well done you!

  7. DaleDietrich

    It drives me nuts that year after year Paul insults those of us that want/need a single license to office by saying its a 'no brainier' and, except for those on submarines and oil rigs, no thinking person would get the perpetual version. Well, excuse me. I run a one-person law office. I don't need, nor want any of the new features. I don't want 'the cloud'. I don't want to collaborate with anyone on my documents. And I most definitely do NOT want the significantly increased cost of a monthly/annual subscription. By my math, the 'perpetual' version pays for itself in about 2 and a half years. I used Office 2010 for 8 years! Had 365 been around all that time it would have cost me well over $600 more. FOR NOTHING! The ONLY reason I NEEDED to update from Office 2010 to Office 2019 is because Microsoft UPDATED Office 2010 to oblivion. There were so many errors and bugs and problems added by its constant security updates that I couldn't take it any more. Office 2010 would still be fine for me but-for Microsoft breaking it!


    And for those of us that purchase Office 365 Business Essentials for $7 a month (in Canada) we already get the 1TB online storage and the ability to use the full versions of the mobile apps on tablets and phones.


    Paul, you yourself, have said it many times on Windows Weekly, that Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook are done. Most people don't already use 80% of their functionality. You yourself said a couple years ago that they are shifting people to the subscription model to keep revenue flowing from customers who wouldn't otherwise upgrade because they are happy with it as it is.


    So PLEASE, Paul, PLEASE understand that there are smart, thinking people who reasonably want/need the perpetual version and save a bundle using it.

    • blods

      In reply to DaleDietrich:

      It drives 'me' nuts - that people who have no interest in something - criticise a review of one of the most popular suites of software on planet earth - which is used by almost every organization. Which releases updates several times a month, with an aboslutely huge array of new features - and the criticism is "Im in not in an office, I'm one person - so I dont need it".


      Well done you.


      Thats like someone criticising a car review - because you've not passed your driving test.

    • cmntc

      In reply to DaleDietrich:


      People need options in every market. I understand the desire for incremental updates, but few of the new features in these updates are absorbed in large organizations' operations in the time it takes for proficiency in those features to gain traction before a new year-based version of Office is released (For $10-$15, I've purchased the year-based version of Office, Project, and Visio each time under the Microsoft Home Use Program that I am able to do using my employee email, but that program could go away at any time). If Microsoft eventually does away with perpetual licensing, users may adapt and adopt open source or other perpetually licensed alternatives that do the bare minimum needed that Office does without the subscription racket (it is not a model - it is a racket).

    • addages9

      In reply to DaleDietrich:

      Don't worry - you're not alone Dale - our customers are much better off for using perpetual Office in many cases for similar reasons - they don't want or use the features, they're not interested and they don't see merit in having operating costs year on year for something they can be buy once and be done with for many years.

  8. rahul07

    In your life there comes a time when you finally have to write a check. For some people, it is exciting to write their first check while for others it’s a no big deal. Not everyone has someone to guide them to write a check, so what should they do? Looks like their problem just got solved. Here we have all the information you need to know about how to write a check

  9. blods

    As per usual - there's the ridiculous uneducated bunch of Microsoft haters - who don't appear to know one end of office from another.

    For 99% of businesses - the O365 features are huge, and the add-ons are more than welcome. Unlike these noddy home or casual users - who would be just as happy using Word Perfect, most MODERN business users have professional requirements. These include things like versioning, security, co-authoring, social collaboration, document labelling, record retention, templating, approvals, comments, document encryption, metadata and so on.

    The wealth of new features in O365 is huge - and most modern organizations are building out power apps, business intelligence reports, workflows and a whole range of things.


    The fact that people in organizations stuck running their office systems as though it was still 1990 - as most commenters on here appear to do - is a shocking inditement of them. Writing comments on here - criticising Microsoft for releasing new features - is like a horse and trap owner, writing rude comments on a site in regard to the automotive use of internal combustion engine.

    • addages9

      In reply to blods:

      "For 99% of businesses - the O365 features are huge"

      and

      "most modern organizations are building out power apps, business intelligence reports, workflows and a whole range of things"


      I disagree - in small companies - who in the UK are the majority of companies - Office 365 is not providing features that are used, wanted to desirable, and those people do use often cause pain, frustration and annoyance.


      Microsoft makes people believe though hiding the existence of perpetual licensing and jacking up the prices to make it look worse that Office 365 is the only option and from a marketing perspective it is a HUGE success, but the reality, whether you see it or not is that there are huge numbers of 365 subscribers who do nothing more than use the office apps - they don't use OneDrive, they don't use any of the "cloud only" features, and frankly they aren't likely to because they're not as "huge" as is made out.


      As for building power apps. BI reports, workflows etc... yeah... they are not!

  10. josey

    Wow Blods in particular but there are some abusive and one eyed people here so much so I have felt compelled to join.


    Just because you live in a world where you are interested & have the time to or are in a profession that gives you the time to keep on top of the constant change & mess ups that software geeks arrogantly inflict on their clients, does not mean everyone lives in your world. Some people do not have the time or interest to live in this addiction driven environment & they are required to be productive in their work environment to earn a wage. They have full lives where every minute is taken up just trying to keep functional with what life throws at them.


    Many do not have IT capabilities, access to internet or the level of internet access required, or have security issues with the cloud, that has been commented on here, however one issue that no one has addressed here is what if you or cannot any longer afford a years subscription to all these software programs for whatever reason. Life does happen if you lose your job for instance or you are on a diminishing pension - you lose all your information, data, etc because you are not able to use the program to read the files - why anyone would put themselves in this totally dependent position beats me but we are being forced to.


    A recent incident - a friend's husband died suddenly and she was unable to access any of the vital information regarding insurance, wills, etc as she did not know his passwords or where he had stored them, the stress on that woman was immense at this time & caused her to have a total breakdown and this is not a sexist remark it has happened to husbands as well.


    Your model of the world is not someone else's so DO NOT insult them or arrogantly put them down because you think you are so superior - life has a habit of bringing you to task and do not think 'it will never happen to me' because my friend the day may come. Not everyone is like you or lives like you for very good reasons........

  11. amjadsadar

    This so amazing post admin. Thanks for sharing

  12. mahimk300

    thats good thank for this information. really good

  13. ailment.info

    Really Nice Inforamtion.

    Thanks for the update.

  14. ailment.info

    Such a nice and informative post.

    Keep Up the good work.

  15. truelinkz

    very useful information thank you.

  16. truelinkz

    very useful information.thank you

  17. truelinkz

    everybody in software loves "continuous" these days. "Continuous Comparison" would be fine.

  18. rachelhenderson

    I really like Office 2019, it'a noticeably faster than 2016, has lots of features, but it's price is just too much.

    I searched around and found one cheaper in DanGiftShop com. Worked great for me!

  19. tomcr

    I have 2 more years pre-paid on Ofc365 and am uninstalling it on my daily used home PC. I will then install my copy of Ofc2019 perpetual. Ofc365 Outlook, Word and Excel are so laggy that I can't stand it anymore. I've uninstalled, reinstalled with MS Support, no change. Last 'perpetual' I had was Ofc2010 (local install as IT knows it) and it was zippy. Then built a new quad-core computer, SSD drive, 16gb ram only 3 years ago, I also prepaid 5yr sub. to Ofc365 at the same time. Only 2yrs ago O365 wasn't so bad, but it has progressively worsened as 'new features' have been added; until now I wait seconds between reading/deleting emails; updating pivot tables in excel, etc. Ugh. All in the name of 'cloud'. I will install where my data is 'on the ground' (locally executed programs). Thank you for this review. It has made me decide to uninstall 365 this weekend and install my HUP copy of Ofc 2019 I recently purchased. Can't wait to be productive again!

  20. thebrianimal

    Our company just made the conscious decision to NOT use Office 365 because we don't want it to be connected to the cloud... we don't want the ridiculous updates that happen about daily... we don't want the laggy (at times) opening and saving of documents as the app checks licensing, etc.... we don't want to have costs to Microsoft for a "subscription" based productivity service in perpetuity...


    and this statement really made me laugh...


    "Most modern companies are using the document management, content management, encryption, workflows, approvals, version control, templating, co-authoring, team integration, power apps etc. etc. etc"


    We're a modern company - 250+ employees - and we don't use document management, content management, encryption, workflows, approvals, version control, templating, co-authoring, team integration, power apps, etc. etc. etc... We literally use NONE of that... and there's no reason we ever would. If a company has a competent IT staff, then the standalone Office products are not only better, but they will save a TON of time and energy in issues that Microsoft causes with their update schedule and new "features" they decide to put into the software that nobody actually needs or wants.


    So I don't know when you became a flag bearer for the Office 365 fanboy club of the Internet, but you need to realize that it's not for everyone... and honestly, not for most.


    Your posts make me laugh though...telling people how they're ignorant and posting ludicrous things simply because they didn't drink the Microsoft Kool-Aid like you did.


    Sip away young grasshopper... sip away.

  21. azoic

    I wandered onto this site and string by accident. there are a lot of Interesting comments. I registered to share a few more.


    I've been an Office user for about three decades (can't remember when I began). I've taught about 40 college intro and intermediate MS Office courses as well as high school, senior citizen, professional education, and adult education courses. After only one MOUS/MOS certification, I decided it was useless to test for more. Nobody ever cared.


    While still teaching, I obtained an official Office 365 University at $85 for three years. It was cheap compared to a regular Office deal. I've almost noticed small changes in the software that almost flutter across my screen and onto my ribbon. I just adapt and move on. Is it slower? Perhaps. Does it make me a happier user? No.


    As a user, I keep my head in the sand, not in the cloud. I don't hook up with others to co-work my files and see no benefit to saving files on the Internet (yes, I should back up to USB more often: everyone should. I'm just not important enough to believe my files should be available anywhere on the planet. I travel less and suspect there are places I’d love to visit where the Internet is not ubiquitous. Ugh, I hate the word ubiquitous.


    There are so many Office apps, I don't know what all of them are. I've used and taught the practical productivity programs: Word, Excel, Outlook, Access, and PowerPoint. Since retirement from the business world and teaching, I seldom use PowerPoint and almost never use Access. My Access was amazing and top-notch: dazzling for data storage and an array of reports containing information combining text and data, but I'm sad to say it is now rusty. In retirement, my current professional work is a monthly newsletter that some might think needs to be done with really pricey software, but Word does just fine. It is more powerful than most people understand. Without much experience or imagination, many Word users think it good for a letter, term paper, memo, or small flyer. Using only 10% of the brain is an urban myth (Einstein got it wrong, too), but I suspect most Office end users are getting about 10% of its power. Forget about the the entire full-blown suite: it's like the extra power in a Chrysler Mopar 426 HEMI in city traffic. You know you have it even if you don't need it, which is usually called ego.


    I used to explain to my students, "There is only one reason for so many new MS Office suites every three or so years." I would then pull a dollar bill out of my wallet as exhibit A; exhibit B was unnecessary.


    When I see Microsoft Office 2019 Professional Plus online for $29.99, I suspect it is a scam. The same product directly from Microsoft is $439.99 and I suspect it is a rip-off. Either way, whether a scam or a rip-off, it is a hurtful way to spend your money.


    A monthly subscription from Microsoft for Office 365 Business Premium offers four apps, four services, and four business tools. At $12.50 per month, is it like dope dealer selling to an unsuspecting junkie? E-bay offers Microsoft Office 365 Lifetime Subscription 5 Devices 5 TB Mac/Window/PC/Mobiles for $10. It must be a wonderful deal, since I saw it on the Internet and I am a believer (dupe, sucker, chump, sap). Wow, if you use it for 40 more years, that’s just two bits a year.

    Note: In pirate movies, a pirate would spend a piece of eight: a gold Doubloon was worth 32 reales or 2 escudos. It’s divisibility into 8 led to the coins being called "pieces of eight". Legend has it that the Spanish coin's markings made it easy to cut into 8 pieces in order to make change during a purchase. If you are not in the know, two bits is not a computer term: it’s two pieces of eight, or a proper fraction of 1/4, hence a quarter, therefore 25 cents. I digress – it’s not much, but digression is the only charm I possess.


    Well the Office options certainly are bewildering. I don’t have any idea what I will do when my Office 365 University expires. Perhaps I’ll go back to paper and pencil.

  22. someguyontheinternet

    The comments on here are hilarious.

  23. nazmulhuda7220

    Two years ago, I installed Office. I think it's better than the new office. There are many benefits to new ones But earlier versions are much easier to use. Microsoft Excel Essentials: Level 2 – Intermediate/Advanced Download

  24. Nonmoi

    There is still some Office softwares that you can only buy in software form, like Project, Visio... will them get a 2019 update?

  25. locust infested orchard inc

    I have and use Office 2016 on a daily basis, similar to many of us here. But I didn't comment simply to say how marvelously wonderful Office is, for we all know that except for one particular wise-ass member here.


    I'm here seeking out some smart arse comment by a notorious member who will probably shower praise and plaudits onto one of the freeware Office wannabes, such as, LibreOffice, Apache OpenOffice, xxxxx


    Leaving aside this opportunistic Microsoft basher who doesn't hesitate to install Windows 10 for a friend whilst sniggering, I recall a time when I attempted to figure out how to use both Harvard Graphics for DOS and Lotus Symphony, but failed miserably to even draw a line, yeah, it was that complex and convoluted from a GUI context (both the aforementioned applications were PowerPoint equivalent).


    However, WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS (the foremost word processor of its time) and Lotus 1-2-3 (the foremost spreadsheet of its time) were a delight to use.


    I recall asking my Uncle to lend me a copy of the bundled manual for Ashton-Tate dBASE III+ (the leading database equivalent to MS Access). The following week I received a parcel; enclosed was about 700 pages, photocopied on both sides of an A4 page of the official manual that accompanied dBASE III+.


    You're probably wondering if I ventured to read the exhaustive text ? Well I tried, but Mum saw to it that schoolwork was done first. Result, sadly I didn't get very far.


    Concerning software manuals, how times have changed. One would be lucky to even get a PDF manual nowadays.


    It's no wonder Microsoft Office / Office 365 is the World's most widely used software, because it is simple to use, yet powerful enough for sophisticated users.


    Oscar Wilde famously said, "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery", and in G Suite, LibreOffice, Apache OpenOffice, amongst many others, their aim to resemble and function similar to Office is testament to MS Office undeniable stature.

    • wright_is

      In reply to locust infested orchard inc:

      I see your WordPerfect and raise you a DisplayWrite IV! WordPerfect and Protext were probably the pinnacle of writing long documents. You concentrated on the text and the interface didn't get in the way. There are some modern attempts at this but WP 5.1 is still the benchmark for me.

      I loved dBase III back then and Clipper (dBase compiler).

      But HG was a pig, until you got used to it.

      I've been using Office, or its components since 1987. My first major project after starting work was to write a timekeeping / overtime system in Excel 1, using Excel Macros (they predated Visual Basic for Applications by about half a decade). Each employee had their own sheet, the supervisor opened the managment sheet and the macro went through all available sheets in the shared folder and pulled across the totals.

      I also wrote a 1-2-3 based system to perform sales budgeting for a large multi-national. We told them 1-2-3 wasn't the right tool, but they insisted. It grew to such a size that the macros were unpredictable. Step through the macro and it was 100% correct. Run the macro and it fell over at random points with garbage data. We eventually passed it back to Lotus, who said 1-2-3 was never concieved for such a complicate "system" and the macro was performing what we would nowadays call a buffer overflow. They told us to cut it out and use a proper tool instead! :-D

  26. zself

    I would worry that MS doesn't say "perpetual license version" but rather "perpetual version". I suppose there are no longer such things as a perpetual license for ubiquitous office tools.

  27. skramer49

    I am retired. I use OneNote all the time, Word quite a bit and Excel occasionally. All on either a MacBook Pro or an iPad. When I open Word on the MBP it shows: Microsoft Word for Mac - Version 16.17 (180909) - License: Office 365 Subscription.


    What do I have?


    Does it matter?

  28. LusoPT

    "There are customers who need to use Office in situations in which they’d like to be online but cannot for various reasons. Submarines, perhaps, or oil platforms."


    Can we stop pretending that internet access is present anywhere and everywhere, or that it doesn't have an extra cost associated to it? Why go for extreme, unrelatable examples like the ones above? When virtually everyone in the press makes the same fallacy, it sounds needlessly condescending and stupid. Some people prefer less dependencies/requirements/costs over new (and rarely, if ever, used) features. It's simple.

    • ym73

      In reply to LusoPT: In the developed world, you will be hard pressed to find a business that doesn't have some kind of internet access. You usually prepare documents for someone and the way you deliver the documents is with email. What is the audience for people that print out the documents and mail them? I bet it's so small now that Microsoft wouldn't care if they lost them as customers. I'm pretty sure that the only reason Microsoft released 2019 is because there is a fairly large group of people that would use Office 2016 indefinitely if a subscription service was the only option. Better to get some money from these people in the form of an upgrade than to get nothing by only selling Office 365.


      • LusoPT

        In reply to ym73:

        It doesn't matter if any business has some form of internet access (and no, not all of them have). It's irrelevant. One shouldn't need internet access to create/edit/manage documents. Why is it so strange to accept the fact that people don't want that extra dependency? A dependency that has its own cost. Not to mention a monthly fee for the software. It's ridiculous. And you are making a case about the pointlessness of Office 365. So why is it so hard for the press to accept the fact that there are many valid reasons to prefer the perpetual version? Heck, I don't mind if they promote Office 365 all they want. Just don't be stupid and condescendent over people who prefer the perpetual version. No, they don't work on a submarine or on a oil rig.


        It's like the IOT on home appliances. Some people just want a washing machine for its primary purpose: to wash. They don't want internet access in it, they don't want firmware updates, etc... They don't think it's worthy, they save money and a whole lot of trouble that way. And there's nothing wrong with that.

  29. 2ilent8cho

    Have Microsoft got bored of annoying its consumers and now going after business customers to alienate? or is it Office's time to be turned into a train wreck like Windows has? If people who's job it is to support or report about Office are confused what hope is there for everyone else? What happened to the Microsoft i use to love :(

    • ggolcher

      In reply to 2ilent8cho:

      I think Microsoft is as confusing as it's ever been, don't worry some things will never change ;)


      For example, why did Office 2010 ProPlus include InfoPath and Office 2010 Ultimate did not?


      Or, without having to reference a detailed spreadsheet, is the difference between Office Pro and Pro Plus, or between Standard and Home and Business?


      Here's another one: how can Microsoft justify Office 365 at $99 / year, but then charge $180 / yr for Visio 365?


      Yeah, Office and Microsoft remain as senseless as ever!

    • wright_is

      In reply to 2ilent8cho:

      This is just the strategy they announced when they moved from 2013 to 2016. Every 2 - 3 years they take a snapshot of where Office 365 currently is, strip out the cloud guff and offer it to those that don't want / need Office 365.

  30. wright_is

    I think that:

    This is an important distinction: For the first time ever, a major new release of Microsoft Office provides less functionality than what current users—in this case, Office 365 subscribers—already have access to.

    is a bit disingenuous, Office 2019 replaces Office 2016, which lags a long way behind Office 365. These are two completely separate branches of the product and Office 2019 has little relation to Office 365 - with the exception is was branched from O365 back onto the "perpetual license" branch.

    At its core, the version of, say, Word that you launch as a perpetual customer (Word 2016 or 2019) is the same as the version you launch as an Office 365 subscriber.

    Again, I find that is poorly worded, Paul. It is not the same version as the Office 365 subscriber. 2016 today is way behind Office 365 and Office 2019 is about where Office 365 was mid-summer, in terms of features, plus the cloud stuff has been stripped off.

    on a single PC and in “air gap” scenarios

    And, again, bias creeps in with that comment. The PCs are rarely air gapped, but the owner doesn't want / need the cloud based data storage for whatever reason or they don't want to upgrade regularly and the pricing doesn't make sense for them.

    As background, I have Office 365 at home and Microsoft 365 at work (although with no cloud functionality enabled).

  31. mmcpher

    I suppose it's a function of my getting O.A.F., but the overall, cross-platform, cloud-syncing has been so spotty that the variations in UI's, like differences in the ribbons, though relatively minor, have pushed me passed some point of critical mass of irritation and inefficiency. I really want and increasingly need, my Office apps to look and operate the same wherever and on whatever I access them. Maybe we could largely achieve this with Office 2019 on-prem and through a VPN off-prem. But I would rather Office 365 everywhere.


  32. red.radar

    For work, I am interested in learning more about the "machine learning and AI" capabilities of Office 365. I am assuming this is marketing gobble gook for data analytics capabilities in which data can be visualized and analyzed in new more efficient ways. Is this a more integrated experience into the world of Power BI?


    This could be helpful for work.


    For my son's book report needs and my wife's grocery lists? I think Google Docs / Libre Office / even Office 365 online are just fine. I am not paying for office as a consumer. I am tired of being nickel-ed and dime-d for software subscriptions when the core functionality doesn't change. Its a terrible value.






  33. MikeGalos

    Actually, don't assume things like submarines and oil platforms are offline. I knew someone in Microsoft Support who got an Excel support question from a tank actually on the battlefield in Iraq in the first Gulf War.

  34. Darekmeridian

    Not sure why anyone would buy Office 2019 if it's a "subset" of Office 365 or maybe that's exactly the point.


    • ben55124

      In reply to Darekmeridian:

      Mostly for business and organizations that don't want a subscription. My company usually pairs office licenses with pc purchases and rarely upgrades for the life of the pc. We end up with a mix of office versions, but file compatibility is rarely an issue. I encourage decision makers to consider O365, but going to a subscription would likely push us to google docs.

  35. igor engelen

    As a 4 persons family with desktops, laptops and mobile devices O365Home is a great product. Kids have all software they need for school and plenty of space for docs or backups.

  36. CaedenV

    Forget about submarines and oil platforms, many of us rely on plugins that may not work with new feature sets and we need a 'lock in' on features that will not change until we are ready. To say nothing about training costs... oi

  37. LocalPCGuy

    Microsoft raised the price of Office 2019 by ten percent over Office 2016. The support period now ends after seven years, instead of the previous ten years,, with 2016 and 2019 having the same "expiration" date. 2019 may be the last "perpetual" Office offered by Microsoft with their move to get everyone on Office 365, or Microsoft 365.

  38. justme

    Pet peeve time -


    First, there are, believe it or not, industries that either have an IP or contractual requirement to NOT use any sort of cloud, making Office 365 useless. I realize that may be hard to fathom for some, but they do exist. Your example of submarines is extreme and sounds condescending even though I am sure it isn't meant to be.


    Second, why is it the world pretends that internet access is all-reaching and everywhere. It is most definitely NOT. Further, those same requirements I mention in my first point actually on occasion prevent you from connecting to the internet.



    • wright_is

      In reply to JustMe:

      That covers us. We have contractual obligations not to put anything in the cloud. I had that at 2 previous companies as well. It was in the terms from some customers / suppliers that the information had to be stored on site and within our control.

      Cloud, even a "private" tenant on Office 365 is not under our control - we don't have admin access to the servers, we don't control the firewalls, backups or remote access.

      Funnily enough, we have Office 365 for the licensing, but with all cloudiness deactivated.

  39. Cdorf

    The Office on-prem is a must for my organization because as a non-profit the pricing they give us is very generous. Its way cheaper to buy on prem office for my 225 users than to use O365 even with non-profit pricing. It is good to hear they are still doing this for that reason.

  40. waethorn

    What's happening with OneNote? You have the Windows 10 UWP version, but customers on Office 365 Business, at least, are still getting "OneNote 2016" (with the date included even though the other programs don't).

    • wright_is

      In reply to Waethorn:

      That was announced in early summer. 2016 is the last version of OneNote standalone, it will eventually be replaced by OneNote UWP, but it lacks feature parity with 2016, so 2016 is still supported.

      Until I can open the local OneNote files on my PC and on our file servers, the UWP version is a non-starter.

      • blods

        In reply to wright_is:

        The UWP version will never be able to upload the OneNotes to the PC or fileserver - That old functionality is deliberately depricated. OneNotes will sync to your phone, PC, tablet etc. but exist in the cloud. This costs as little as £3.80 a month for an enterprise subscription or is free on personal Onedrive.

        The UWP version has already overtaken the desktop app in having new features that didn't exist on the desktop version. But there are some features that I miss - however in the last few months, the differences have been getting smaller and smaller.


        But local onenote storage (apart from it being syncd locally) is not on the radar - and I get why Microsoft don't want it to be. OneNote - is platform agnostic. Our entire organization can create and share notes with each other, and with third party organizations from PC, tablet, Android, iPhone, Mac and a web browser - from anywhere on the planet. Notes can be updated and will sync the second an Internet becomes available - that's a remarkable achievement.

        The idea that notes are tied to your file server and only accessible from inside your organization - if you can get to the server, is not the way Microsoft are heading.

  41. wbhite

    I haven't purchased a perpetual license in a long time, but what does it cost for the full suite? 3 or 4 hundred dollars? That's as many years worth of O365 subscriptions for a home with multiple users. I agree with Paul - O365 is a no-brainer.

  42. trump damaged

    I just installed office 2019 on a win 10 OS and realise that I made a grave mistake.

    1 Sluggish performance of word processing perhaps is linked to the internet speed. But till now this transmission speed was never a problem for me, for example with email writing. A one page txt without images is Word 2019 horribly sluggish even with a high end computer.

    2 I do not understand the statement that office 2019 is not cloud-oriented since that is most of the problem, especially if one works in places with no internet connection. You have to retrieve your texts from the cloud to process. If you lacked the foresight to do this aforehand, you can start from some old version you might have left over from before.

    3 All details of Word 2019 now have to be, one by one, solved by different apps which are rarely named: Just look for the unnamed app. In its basic version, Word 2019 is not much better than WordPad. Even setting the basic text language is daunting. Not like before.

    4 Office 2019 is not customer-oriented; it is MS-oriented. If you want your own data structure you must counter MS basic formatting and defaults.

    5 In the end, with annual renewals, and with an unknown number of apps he/she will need, the customer pays far more. An overview of a barrage MS apps, varying in price, is a real challenge. Public offices will probably comprise much of the new sales, not private buyers. It is all about sales. Difficult to understand the final cost with the MS salami strategy: every once in a while you have to cut a slice, but in reality you do not know how long the salami is.

    6 The use of Word 2019 may produce numerous numbered copies of the same text as one exits and re-enters. Easy to get confused as to which the actual version. Easy to make mistakes in the constant reworking of complex texts requiring constant exiting and entering.

    7 Missing in MS Word 2019: text-related necessities such as use of diacritics for foreign languages, dots in place of spaces, markers for new lines. For all of these problems there are commercially available apps which one can seek, one by one. Bring along enough time.

    8 Word 2019 focusses on working internet groups and the mandatory uploading into the cloud is time-consuming on a daily basis.

    9 Microsoft made Bill Gates one of the richest men in the world. The new MS versions, renewable on an annual basis, will vastly increase the profit margin.

    10 MS help is notorious for sending one on snipe hunts into different places to solve deficits inherent in the programme itself owing to its lack of transparent design and ambitious marketing. Difficult to have an overview of the programme, even with daily use.

    11 Most of the formatting from earlier MS Word versions are not accepted by Word 2019 (tabs etc.). The programmers made their lives easy.

    12 Many appear to adjust to Word 2019. I did not and wish that I had not deleted my old MS Office. I only did this naively thinking that support for my old MS Office would stop, poor judgement on my part. I may try some other non-cloud programme or perhaps Office 2016.

    13 the MS rhetoric focusses on superlatives and ideals distant from real work. One is sold an image of a perfection, not necessarily what you need to write an article or some common task.



Leave a Reply