Microsoft Releasing New Microsoft 365 Basic Product and Apps This Month
Microsoft this week announced Microsoft 365 product news, including a new consumer Basic product offering.
Microsoft also announced that the site to access the Microsoft 365 App, namely Microsoft 365.com, is now commercially available. Additionally, Microsoft 365 Apps will be arriving this month for Windows and mobile devices.
New Microsoft 365 Basic Product
Microsoft 365 Basic is a new lower cost "premium" Office subscription bundle that's aimed at individual users. The Basic product will be available on Jan. 30, 2023.
Pricing for Microsoft 365 Basic will be $1.99 per month or $19.99 per year. Basic buyers can get it via this Microsoft plans page on Jan. 30. It'll also be available for purchase "from the OneDrive and Outlook apps."
Here's what Microsoft 365 Basic plan will offer to subscribers:
- Access to Web and mobile versions of Office applications, such as Clipchamp, Excel, Microsoft Editor, OneNote, PowerPoint and Word
- Access to Outlook for e-mail and calendar functions, which is said to be ad-free and protected by "built-in security tools"
- Access to 100 GB of OneDrive cloud storage, and
- Access to "support experts for help with Microsoft 365 and Windows 11 at an affordable price."
Microsoft already offers a "Standalone" OneDrive subscription plan for $19.99 per year that delivers 100GB of online storage. However, that plan will be going away. It'll be supplanted by the Microsoft 365 Basic plan.
Subscribers to the 100GB "Standalone" OneDrive offering will get switched automatically to the Microsoft 365 Basic plan, starting on "January 30, 2023," the announcement indicated.
Microsoft is promising to bolter its Microsoft 365 Basic subscriptions in the near future. For instance, it'll be adding "advanced security features like ransomware recovery and password-protected sharing links in OneDrive later in 2023."
Microsoft also promised OneDrive storage enhancements. Coming on Feb. 1, 2023, Microsoft will enable a "simplified overview of your storage usage across Microsoft 365, including OneDrive, Outlook and more." This simplified view will display how much storage is used of the total capacity, breaking out total storage use by apps, such as OneDrive storage and Outlook storage.
Microsoft 365 App News
Microsoft's announcement also provided an update on the status of its newly rebranded Microsoft 365 App.
The Microsoft 365 App Web site, which has replaced Office.com, is now at the "general availability" release stage. The Windows and Mobile Microsoft 365 App product versions will be coming later this month.
Here's how Microsoft characterized Microsoft 365 App availability:
We are happy to announce that the Microsoft 365 app is now generally available on the web at Microsoft 365.com and will be available on Windows and mobile on both Google Play and the Apple App Store later in January 2023.
The Microsoft 365 App is a rebranding of the Office.com site, the Office Mobile App and the Office App for Windows. For this rebranding, Microsoft dropped the overall Office name and uses new graphic icons for the Office products. The branding switch was originally described back in October.
Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.