Cloud computing as you must be aware by now is the next big thing in computing right now, for those who do not know cloud computing Is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software, and information are provided to computers and other devices on demand, like the electricity grid. Microsoft has been the biggest software development company in the world for a long-long time now and It is pretty much possible that the computer you are running is being operated by a Microsoft developed system. Now imagine if a host of software services are being provided by a company of the cadre of Microsoft over the internet isn’t that amazing? Well Microsoft Office 365 is probably the company’s next big step in the direction.
Office 365 is a rebranding of the previous Business Productivity Online Suite and according to what we’re reading at CNET, it has its aim directly at Google Apps for Business. For those who have used Office 2010, you already know how solid the product is. A few annoyances aside, it’s incredibly well done and hard to beat for a full-featured solution. That entire solution, now, will be available as a cloud-based service for businesses, starting at prices as low as $6 per user per month. Microsoft Office 365 is the company’s next generation in cloud productivity that brings together Microsoft Office, SharePoint Online, Exchange Online and Lync Online in an always-up-to-date cloud service.
Office 365 makes it easier for millions more organizations to get and use Microsoft’s award-winning business productivity solutions via the cloud. With Office 365, people can work together more easily from anywhere on virtually any device, while collaborating with others inside and outside their organization in a simple and highly secure way. As part of today’s news, Microsoft is also opening a limited beta program for Office 365 in 13 countries and regions.
The price? Well, $27 per user per month. That’s a pretty sharp contrast to Google Apps’ top edition that runs $50 per user per month. However, that is for the top of the line. For basic access to Microsoft Office, the $6 per month price tag only amounts to $72 per year.
“Office 365 is the best of everything we know about productivity, all in a single cloud service,” said Kurt DelBene, president of the Office Division at Microsoft. “With Office 365, your local bakery can get enterprise-caliber software and services for the first time, while a multinational pharmaceutical company can reduce costs and more easily stay current with the latest innovations. People can focus on their business, while we and our partners take care of the technology.”
Office 365 will be available worldwide next year. Starting today, Microsoft will begin testing Office 365 with a few thousand organizations in 13 countries and regions around the world, and the beta will be expanded to include more organizations over time. Office 365 will be generally available in 40 countries and regions next year.
Later next year, Office 365 will expand to include Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online to provide Microsoft’s complete business productivity experience to organizations of all types and sizes. In addition, Office 365 for education will debut later next year, giving students, faculty and school employees powerful technology tailored specifically to their needs. Microsoft will launch http://www.Office365.com. Customers and partners can sign up for the Office 365 beta and learn more at that site, or follow Office 365 on Twitter (@Office365), Facebook (Office 365), or the new Office 365 blog at http://community.office365.com to get the latest information.
Well there you have it- Microsoft on the cloud, we love it!! Do you?