Is Office 365 worth it?

I am considering subscribing to Office 365 and have a few questions?

  1. With the local install, can you move rights from one machine to another easily. I regularly rotate machines.
  2. Can the installed Excel use plugins? I use use Excel to pull data from client's SCADA systems.
  3. Does it work well when offline? I travel a lot and don't always have internet access.
  4. How is good is the web app when running on Linux?
  5. Dose the OSX install work as well as the Windows install?
  6. How limited is the phone/tablet app?
  7. Is it worth the 9.99 a month with the Skydrive storage and  Skype minutes?

Thanks in advance for any one who has an answer.

It depends - do you HAVE to have Office?

What about Open Office/Libre Office + Dropbox?

Libre won't work due to me needing Excel 

No, I do not have office

No links to pirated software please. Read the rules. -Mod

No links to pirated software please

I am not going to use pirated software for business purposes. I just wanted see other people's opinion for using office across 5 machines what route made more sense.

Libre office includes excel right?  Libreoffice has their own version of word, powerpoint and excel which are very similar to office.  Personally I dont live office 365, If I was set on getting microsoft office I would buy the 2010 disc version so that I could install it on as many machines as I need.  

I think it's great.

1. You have 5 licenses so you can install the full suite on up to 5 PCs without running into any issues. You can manage these licenses from, say if you had already used up 5 and needed to revoke a license from a PC so you could use it on another.

2. Yes. It is a full blown local install.

3. It works perfectly fine offline. After a month or so it may start giving you reminders that it needs internet access to verify your license but it'll go a very long time before it actually cuts off functionality. For example, my Office 365 subscription ended May 25th and it allowed me to go almost a full 2 months before it actually stopped working.

4. The web app is just browser based version, which I find is "good enough". It's certainly better than Google Docs or any other Office-like web app in my opinion.

5. I'm unsure about the OS X side of things as I've never used it.

6. From reviews I've read people seem to really like the iOS apps. There is also no limit on the number of devices you can use the mobile apps on with your subscription. They state the limit is 10, but they have said there isn't actually a technical limit and they won't prevent you from using more.

7. I plan to renew my subscription, I think it is entirely worth it especially given all the value adds such as:

5 licenses for the full blown suite to be installed simultaneously on different computers

The OneDrive storage which I believe is now 1TB

The Skype 60 minutes per month

The ability to use the iOS/tablet apps on as many devices as you want

And that you are entitled to new versions without additional costs

Edit: You also get Office on Demand (accessible through the OneDrive site by right-clicking a document there and selecting "Open in Word"/Excel/PowerPoint/etc which allows you to stream a copy of Office to use it without installing it. This version is a full desktop version but does not install locally to the PC and also does not require administrator privileges.)

Also if you sign up with the year long commitment then its $100/year so you save a little over $10/month.


I never understood people paying money for software when its a google search away, and MOST people do it. Ah well its whatever. I would rather drop that extra 100 or 200 from an OS or Office on hardware.

I don't know about most people but for me it's because I respect the software developers who created the software and I think they deserve a paycheck for the work they do at their job. To me it doesn't matter if the software was made by a "big bad corporation" or an independent developer in an apartment, if they worked hard to create something then they should be compensated for it.

Thank you for the thorough answer. I will try it for a month and if I like it I will buy a year. 

I prefer open software but when it comes to industrial automation that is simply not possible. Different companies use a variety of  middle ware which may not work with Libre Office.

Second you should never use pirated software for business. Also the money spent on it can be placed as a business expense so it is tax exempt. 


1.) Yes, if you are upgrading from one machine to another rapidly.

2.) Definitely. 

3.) Works perfectly offline. It is a full installation that you pay for monthly.

4-7, no idea

I personally hate the SAAS concept. I would rather own Office. I have 2003 installed at home, and I have been happily using it for a decade. I did use Office 2010 at my last job, and I can see the advantages of upgrading Access, but nothing else (unless you do simulations in excel that converge at high n-values, like >65,000). 

The best deals are when you can buy a home copy for your work Office, This is often only $15. The other is if you know you need it for a single engagement.

Otherwise, search for deals. I must admit that I do not use the other services, so these may make the price more reasonable. Also, $10 seems cheap. I have never bought only once copy. Perhaps this is a stripped down version. I know that I always need Access, and the lower priced versions never have it.

I am doing a one month to see how I like it the local installs are full Office Pro 2013 (I can add plugins to Excel) the Mac version is Mac Office 2011. The web app seems pretty full featured and works well in Linux (Chrome has it in the app store, doesn't runn offline though).

I have 30 Gigs of storage for up to 5 accounts and it has Onenote (like Evernote). 60 mins of international calling with Skype(if those minutes work with Skype wifi it would be amazing). A year is $90 monthly is 9.99.

Seem alright and if I don't like it I got Libre Office to fall back on.

I don't know if software subscriptions are the right way to go, most people will not spend 100 $ / year of their own money for office software, which means that in the long run employers will increasingly be confronted with employees that aren't familiar with Ms Office. My prediction is that libre office will eventually erode ~95% the market for payed office.

If you absolutely need the corporate functionality of MS office i guess give it a try.

However i think Libre office works with scada:

For Linux there's always cross-over office.

Also i would look into setting up own cloud or bit-torrent sync, if governments continue to abuse IT-companies as instrument of power for international bullying. Everything cloud based is going to become an unreliable legal minefield.

I'm really tempted to go down the one-off purchase route. I think I'd prefer to spend £109 outright, than keep sinking £5.99/month. I'm really not a fan of subscription payment for software. I'm pissed enough about Adobe CC.

well libre office is free, i would check out if that isn't enough, before sinking money into a corporate fly trap.

Keep in mind that governments are starting to use libre office: so there's going to be broad shoulder financing the project.

I bought my Dell Venue 8 Pro (Windows Tablet) and it came with Office Free. for a $250 Dollar Tablet with Free Office. Kudos to Microsoft for being Generous for once. i don't use that one-drive at ALL. and i don't think i would ever pay for cloud storage when drop-box is doing me justice. The Right thing I think Microsoft is doing which i don't think they are getting a lot of credit for is buying something once and then being able to use it on all platforms which all the apps on the store is capable of.

But is it worth it, yes i do think so, cause you can use the program on all your devices, Laptop, Desktop, Tablet and Phone?? but who the hell would use it on a phone.

I've not heard of Libre Office (I've been living under a rock). Thanks for the info! I'll give it a whirl.

This thread was long dead. please start your own thread rather than bringing up old threads.

Obviously you should not use pirated software for business. But you should make sure that Libre calc sheet does not have the functionality you need. It actually has pretty good compatibility with the excel sheets. More than impress and writer with the respective MS office stuff. Sub based software is a really dangerous paradigm that companies can exploit. So i would use it only as a last option. I would prefer to buy actual copies and use a custom made cloud if it would not create issues for the business. But you know whats best for your business.