Like Adobe’s Creative Cloud suite of apps, Microsoft Office has been a subscription package for a few years, but now it’s available on the Mac App Store. You get a free trial for a month, then a subscription price tag.
There once was a time, way back to, oh, perhaps 2010, when we bought applications, and a few years later upgraded the applications as new features were added. Those days are not dead. Yet. But their days appear numbered thanks to ongoing subscriptions.
Of the major software publishers, Adobe’s Creative Cloud made the transition; all of the company’s major apps for one monthly payment. Wisely, Adobe broke out a few apps– Photoshop and Lightroom– separate from the entire package, but those, too, are subscription apps.
Microsoft Office 365 is a subscription plan, but the apps have also been available as a one-time-payment package– but not on the Mac App Store. That has changed. What you get are the Mac basics. Excel, PowerPoint, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook, or Word. Or, all of them. The annual subscription price is $70 (minus a penny).
What if you already have a Microsoft Office 365 subscription? That works, too. You can download the whole suite from the Mac App Store, or any of the applications you need.
Apple and Microsoft have worked together to bring great Office productivity to Mac users from the very beginning. Now, with Office 365 on the Mac App Store, it’s easier than ever to get the latest and best version of Office 365 for Mac, iPad and iPhone.
Exactly what kind of deal Apple cut Microsoft is not publicly known. Apple’s previous deal was simple. The App Store collected 30-percent of the price or ongoing revenue (with a lesser amount for second year subscriptions). Maybe Apple gave Microsoft a better deal as an enticement to use the Mac App Store (Office apps have been available on the iOS App Store for a few years).
Regardless, the new subscription makes it much easier to try Office and subscribe to Office without dealing directly with Microsoft.
Just between you and me and the fencepost, this subscription trend is getting out of control. How long before Apple begins to charge a subscription for Garageband, Calendar and Contacts, Messages and FaceTime?