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General Availability Of Office 2021 Announced By Microsoft

Sun Sep 19 2021

Microsoft announces Office LTSC availability, new features, and changes to prices of Microsoft 365 subscriptions

Commercial customers now have access to the next perpetual version of Microsoft Office (Office LTSC 2021). A consumer version will follow on 5th of October, the same day as the set release date for Windows 11.

What does ‘LTSC’ stand for?

It means ‘Long Term Servicing Channel’ and means users only have to pay once.

Basically, unlike the subscription-based Office 365, Office LTSC won’t receive updates to it from Microsoft and it’ll remain the same forever in terms of features. So it’s a buy once, own forever, as is.

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Office LTSC is designed for specific scenarios: regulated devices that cannot accept feature updates, process control devices on the manufacturing floor, and specialty systems that cannot connect to the internet. To meet this need, Office LTSC will provide a locked-in-time version of familiar productivity tools

Microsoft Statement

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This version of Office will be available on Windows and macOS, and Microsoft plans to support it for at least five years.

And yes, they have committed to releasing another perpetual version of Office in the future.

Microsoft 365 subscribers will already be familiar with the several new features of Office LTSC 2021, which include: new translation capabilities in Outlook, functions like XMATCH, XLOOKUP and LET in Excel, and an improved slideshow recorder in PowerPoint.

There’re also performance improvements, a new visual design across apps, new accessibility features and dark mode support, among others.

There’s no detailed pricing for Office 2021 yet, but it’s expected to remain similar for all users whether personal or business.

Microsoft announced a price increase for Microsoft 365 subscriptions and those will go into effect in March 2022.

The ‘basic business plan’ with see a 20 percent rise, from $5 per user to $6, and the high-end Microsoft 365 E3 will go up 12.5 per cent, from $32 to $36 per user. These changes will be applied globally and local adjustments for certain regions will be accounted for.

It is the first substantial price change to Office 365 since Microsoft launched the product a decade ago.

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Sun Sep 19 2021

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