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By Betsy Frost Webb
It’s a game changer for Microsoft, and it’s going to be a game changer for businesses of all sizes, government agencies and even for education. Announced just today, Office 365 is the next step in the future of productivity. Is this what’s next for BPOS? Yes. Is this what’s next for Office Live Small Business? Yes. Is this what’s next for Live@edu? Yes. Will Office desktop software be available as part of a cloud service? Yes. Is this productivity in the cloud? Yes. And, it’s even more than that. It’s the best of everything Microsoft knows about business productivity in one service.
With Office 365, everything is designed to work together. Earlier this year, the launch of our flagship products, Office, SharePoint, and Exchange 2010 ushered in the future of productivity. Together with Lync, these products provide the backbone for the modern business. Customers using these 2010 products are benefiting from super productive employees who can work from anywhere, on any device and from anywhere in the world. But what if you are the local cupcake shop on Main Street – have you been using all these kinds of tools for your business? Probably not. What if you are a bigger business, trapped on legacy technology that limits accessibility behind the firewall – have your people been as productive as those using the latest innovations? Probably not.
Now, you can have it all with Office 365. We’ve not only designed and built our flagship products to work together, but with Office 365, we’re taking the next step and delivering all these capabilities as designed in the cloud. ‘Rich presence’ suddenly lights up everywhere in Office, and you can see at-a-glance if a colleague is available and call, IM, e-mail, or even start a video conference in one click. You can bring social networking to everyday work tasks like document sharing and collaboration – but with all the security and privacy that a business requires. These are just a couple of the many amazing features you get with Office 365.
We designed Office 365 to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes – from one to one million. You’ll be able to pick and choose services and tailor the package to fit your needs – whether you are a government agency, small business or enterprise company; whether you have information workers or factory floor workers, store managers on location or on the go, or a combination of all types.
‘Game changer’ is a big statement, but we believe this will change the way you do business. The technology is the latest, most up-to-date and comprehensive service you can find. It’s based on Office, so you already know how to use it. It’s online and designed to work with the software, phones and browsers people use most today, including the new Windows Phones as well as a host of others. We are investing deeply and have tens of thousands of people around the world backing this service. We have secured the industry’s most rigorous security and privacy standards and will bring those to Office 365 along with 24/7 phone and community support. We have the world’s smartest and best partner ecosystem getting ready to help you take advantage of Office 365. We are serious about Office 365 being what your business, non-profit, government agency or school needs to succeed.
Beta opens today. Get your spot at www.office365.com starting at noon pacific time. Read more on the Microsoft Office News Center. Watch the demo on Channel 9.
@Rick: Nope, no information at all. And we have a LOT more to offer compared to Google Apps, especially if you use Microsoft Office. Read more of our blogs for details on how Office 365 can provide value to your business. There is also a security whitepaper here: www.microsoft.com/.../details.aspx
I also would like to know Microsoft's non-profit policy for Office 365.
Both Google Apps and Salesforce offer a complete set of services for FREE for every non-profit organisation with a IRC 501 C3 registration. I haven't found any information on this for Office 365
@Koen: We haven't announced our Non-profit details yet. Microsoft is committed to helping organizations that serve the community and create a positive impact on the world. Currently, we provide access to cash, software and curriculum, check out more on our citizenship website. www.microsoft.com/.../non-profits
As a registered NGO, we are also using MSFT's Volume Licensing for Office and Windows Products. We have obtained 200 licenses for free from Google Apps to move our E-Mail Server to the Cloud.
Will MSFT offer a similar option to NGOs like us? At this all we would use would be the E-mail Service in the cloud.
@Gopal: More details are coming on this. Microsoft is committed to helping organizations that serve the community and create a positive impact on the world. Currently, we provide access to cash, software and curriculum, check out more on our citizenship website.
BPOS has pricing that is provided once the org goes through the validation process, and there is a manual addendum to the MOSA that enables the discount. We have not landed on the O365 charity pricing yet, but we will continue to provide discounts to qualifying entities.
I'd encourage you to read through our Why Microsoft blog about the hidden costs of Google Apps as well. blogs.technet.com/.../the-hidden-google-tax.aspx
Hi Allen, Office 365 has gone live now. Is there any more information on the details for non-profit organisations yet? As I mentioned before, both Google Apps and Salesforce offer a complete set of services for FREE for every non-profit organisation with a IRC-501-C3 registration. I still can't find any information on this for Office 365. There is only information about educational licenses.
I am currenty an office live small business user in the uk what i need to know is how much this will affect my email accounts for our business as this is what we use it for and also the website what do i have to do to have a smooth transition or is there any consultannts based in london that I can use to help?