Microsoft 365 vs Office 365

Many people get confused about Microsoft 365 vs Office 365. Do you know how they differ?

If you’re trying to determine which one is better for using Microsoft’s apps like Word, Excel and PowerPoint, then you might find yourself torn between Microsoft 365 and Office 365. 

These are 2 different ways to access Microsoft productivity tools, each with some important distinctions you should be aware of before making your decision.

To help you distinguish between them, Gosofware will assist you in comparing the features, benefits, and costs of Microsoft 365 vs Office 365

We’ll also provide you with some tips on how to choose the best one for your needs, whether you’re a business professional or just an individual.

Sounds good? Let’s dive in!

What Is Office 365 Exactly? 

Office 365 is a handy cloud-based tool that helps boost your work efficiency. It’s a subscription service that gives you access to familiar apps like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on your computer, phone, or online. 

Office 365 also provides online tools like Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Exchange, and more.

Office 365
The Ultimate Guide to Microsoft 365 vs Office 365: Features, Benefits and Costs 7

With Office 365, you can reach your documents and apps from anywhere, collaborate with others in real time, and automatically receive the latest updates and features

You can pick the right plan and price that suits your needs and preferences. What’s great is that Office 365 plays nicely with other versions like Microsoft Office 2021, 2019, and 2016.

=> On the slip side, you may wonder: “What is the difference between Microsoft Office and Office 365?”

It’s a common question, and understanding the distinction between these two products is essential, as they serve different purposes in productivity software.

The contrast between Microsoft Office and Office 365 lies in how you get them

  • Microsoft Office is a single purchase that lets you install applications on your computer once. 
  • Office 365, on the other hand, is a subscription service that offers the same apps along with online tools and cloud storage.
Aspect Microsoft Office Office 365
Cost One-time payment Monthly or yearly subscription
Updates No automatic updates Automatic updates and upgrades 
Devices Install on a single PC or Mac per license Install on up to five devices per user
Apps Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher (PC only), Access (PC only) Same apps plus additional online services

Are you looking for a budget-friendly, lifetime access option for Microsoft Office 2021, 2019, or 2016

Look no further! We offer the latest Microsoft Office available at the best prices. Plus, if you select the login option, you can enjoy even more affordable prices with our special offers. 

You can embrace the power of Microsoft Office 2021 Home and Student, perfect for families and small businesses. This suite includes classic Office applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. 

The best part is it’s a one-time purchase that provides access on both Windows and Mac devices, whether you’re connected to the internet or not.

Secure your copy of Microsoft Office 2021 today and enjoy unbeatable value!

Micorsoft office 2021


Pros and cons of Office 365

Office 365 is a subscription service that allows users to access these applications online or offline, on different devices, and with different plans and prices. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of Office 365:

✔️Pros ❌Cons
Cost-effective with automatic updates Data security and privacy concerns
1 TB cloud storage and easy accessibility Compatibility and reliability issues
Efficient email and collaboration tools Limited features and customization options

Office 365 Version Comparison

Currently, there are three versions of Office 365: E1, E3, and E5. All three versions require an annual commitment. Here is a detailed table comparing the latest versions of Office 365:

  • Pricing and User Details
Aspect Office 365 E1 Office 365 E3 Office 365 E5
Current price (Annual payment) $10.00/user/month $23.00/user/month $38.00/user/month
Number of users Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
Devices per user Web and mobile apps only Up to 5 devices (PC, Mac, phone, tablet) Up to 5 devices (PC, Mac, phone, tablet)
Cloud storage per user One Drive: 1TBOutlook: 50GB One Drive: 1-5TBOutlook: 100GB One Drive: 1-5TBOutlook: 100GB
  • Included Apps and Online Services
Aspect Office 365 E1 Office 365 E3 Office 365 E5
Included Apps Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, Exchange, SharePoint, and more E1 apps, plus Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more E3 apps, plus Power BI Pro
Online Services Audio conferencingSecure cloud servicesCompliance toolsetc E1 services, plus:Message encryptionRights managementAdvanced security features E3 services, plus:Phone systemAdvanced threat protectionDevice managementetc
  • Security Features and Analytics
Aspect Office 365 E1 Office 365 E3 Office 365 E5
Security Features Standard security featuresencryptionmulti-factor authentication E1 security features plus:Data loss preventionAdvanced threat protectionetc E3 security features, plus:Advanced threat protection for email, files, identity, infrastructure, etc
Analytics Power BI Pro (business intelligence)

What is Microsoft 365 exactly? 

Microsoft 365 is a subscription with the latest and most collaborative features in one smooth experience. 

It includes everything in Office 365, plus Windows 10 and the Enterprise Mobility Suite (suite of security and management apps), plus extra online storage and tools for working on files together in real-time. 

Microsoft 365
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With a subscription, you’ll always get the newest features, fixes, and security updates, and you’ll have ongoing tech support at no extra cost. 

Besides, users can pay monthly or yearly, and the Microsoft 365 Family plan allows you to share it with up to 6 family members and use your apps on various devices like PCs, Macs, tablets, and phones.

Comparing Microsoft 365 plans across its target audience segments, you’ll find that Microsoft 365 offers various services. Let’s explore some of these critical segments in the next part!

Microsoft 365 for Home

Microsoft 365 for Home is a subscription that opens the door to a range of Microsoft products and services for your personal and family needs. It offers apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, and more. 

You’ll also get online services like OneDrive for storing your stuff in the cloud, Microsoft Family Safety for keeping your loved ones safe online and in the real world, Skype for video calls, and more.

Microsoft 365 Family
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Depending on your plan, you might also enjoy Microsoft 365 Apps, the desktop versions of Office apps, as well as handy tools like Microsoft Editor, Microsoft Translator, and even Microsoft Money in Excel for your finances.

Microsoft 365 for Home offers different plans and prices tailored to the number of users and the features you need. It’s all about making Microsoft products and services accessible and flexible for your family’s unique requirements.

Microsoft 365 for Business

Microsoft 365 for Business is tailored for small and medium-sized businesses, granting access to a range of Microsoft products and services.

Compared to Microsoft 365 for home, it offers a more extensive package, including SharePoint for online collaboration, Exchange for managing email and calendars, Bookings for appointment scheduling, and more.

Microsoft 365 for business
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Depending on your business’s chosen plan, you can also access Microsoft 365 Apps:

  • Visio for creating diagrams
  • Project for project management
  • Intune for device control
  • Azure Information Protection for safeguarding data
  • Cloud App Security for monitoring cloud applications
  • Advanced eDiscovery for data analysis
  • Advanced compliance for risk management
  • Power BI Pro for business insights
  • etc

Microsoft 365 for Enterprise

Microsoft 365 for Enterprise is another subscription service for big companies and organizations. Once purchased, your business can access various unique Microsoft products and services.

In addition to what’s in Microsoft 365 for Business, it includes Windows 10 Enterprise and the Enterprise Mobility Suite, which has various security and management apps. 

Businesses will also find more advanced stuff like a phone system, calling plan, audio conferencing, and tools like Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, Identity, and Cloud Apps.

The price you pay depends on how many users you have and what features you need. For instance, Microsoft 365 E3 costs $36.00/user/month, while Microsoft 365 E5 is $57.00/user/month and they all require annual payment at the moment.

Microsoft 365 Education

Microsoft 365 for Education is all about making learning better for teachers and students. It offers innovative apps, smart cloud services, and top-notch security.

This service is great for both in-class and remote learning, with handy tools like Microsoft Teams, OneNote Class Notebook, Flipgrid, Minecraft: Education Edition, and more.

The price and plans for Microsoft 365 for Education vary based on the number of users and what features you need. 

For example, Microsoft 365 A1 is free for students and eligible educators, while Microsoft 365 A3 costs $2.99/student/month and $3.25/educator/month as of now.

Microsoft 365 vs Office 365 Comparison Table

So, “Is Microsoft 365 the same as Office 365?”

No, Microsoft 365 and Office 365 are NOT the same. Microsoft 365 is another subscription service that goes beyond Office 365 by adding more security and management features.

Think of Office 365 as a part of Microsoft 365, offering just the Office apps and some online services. They serve different purposes and are not interchangeable.

Here’s a quick overview table between Microsoft 365 vs Office 365 based on various aspects like features, updates, cost, security, and more. It’ll help you quickly check out the key differences.

Feature Microsoft 365 Office 365
Definition A comprehensive cloud service for security, reliability, and productivity A cloud platform for productivity, collaboration, and email services.
Current price $6.99 to $57.00/user/month $10.00 to $57.00/user/month
Devices per user Web and mobile apps for 5 devices Web and mobile apps for 5 devices
Cloud storage per user 1 TB to unlimited 1 TB to unlimited
Included Apps All Office 365 apps, plus Visio and Windows 10 Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, Access, and some plans include Teams, OneDrive, Exchange, SharePoint, etc.
Online Services All Office 365 online services, security features like Intune, Azure Information Protection, etc. Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Exchange, and more, with security and management features available in some plans.


When comparing Microsoft 365 vs Office 365, organizations can gain a clear understanding of what each of these cloud-based services offers. 

  • Microsoft 365, being the more comprehensive choice, includes all the tools and applications found in Office 365, plus it adds Windows 10 and enhanced security and management features. It is an excellent fit for those looking for an all-in-one solution.
  • On the other hand, Office 365 primarily focuses on essential productivity and collaboration applications. 

Besides, the decision between the two depends on an organization’s specific needs, budget constraints, and the level of security and management they require

And the choice ultimately comes down to matching these offerings with an organization’s unique goals and resources. Thank you for your interest!

FAQs of Microsoft 365 vs Office 365 Comparison

  1. Is Microsoft 365 Office free?

Microsoft 365 Office is not free, but it has some free options. You can use the web and mobile versions of the apps, sign up for a free trial, and get it for free if you are a student or an educator.

  1. What is Microsoft 365 Family?

Microsoft 365 Family is a subscription service that gives you and your family access to the latest versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and other apps, as well as 6 TB of cloud storage and advanced security features. Currently, it costs $99.99 per year or $9.99 per month for up to six people.

  1. What is Microsoft 365 Basic?

Microsoft 365 Basic is a new subscription service from January 30, 2023. It replaces the current OneDrive 100 GB Standalone plan, which will no longer be available after that date.

  1. Will Microsoft 365 Replace Office 365?

No, Microsoft 365 will not replace Office 365 entirely. However, Microsoft 365 will become the new name and brand for most of the Office products and services, while Office 365 will remain as a legacy option for some customers.