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Microsoft recently released the preview of Office 2013. When I went to the download site, it was filled with Microsoft Office 365 information. I am curious; what is the difference between the two software packages?

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Difference between office 365 and office 2013 - Microsoft Answers – did you search before? –  slhck Jul 18 '12 at 1:39
    
Added new answer with comparison of Office offerings. –  Brad Patton Mar 29 '13 at 15:40

2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

I've installed the Office 2013 preview, and other than the odd Metrofied colour schemes, it's really similar to Office 2007 and 2010. There's probably some new stuff, but its not very different from Office 2010 or 2007.

From what I can tell, Office 2013 refers to the desktop client proper - while Office 365 refers to their equivalent of Google docs - the online office client. They refer to the suite as Office 365 preview, but the software busts as (product) 2013. It also seems to refer to being able to 'Add services' so I'm guessing it would have integration with office 365 online. My Office/Microsoft UID/password doesn't seem to work on Office 365's regular logon so I'm guessing I've missed something, or it's not part of this preview.

See the about page the product information tab under the new Metroish file menu

enter image description here

It uses both names at the moment

Here's some screenshots of Word 2007, 2010 and 2013

enter image description here

Office 2007 Ultimate Edition

enter image description here 2010 starter

enter image description here Office 2013 Preview

As you can see, Office 2013, at the very least refers to the desktop clients that make up office, and those may be somehow connected to the Office 365 suite. You still get a proper desktop client you can use offline however, not very different from what you're used to.

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Office 365 is not just web apps. –  Brad Patton Mar 29 '13 at 3:43

Microsoft is now packaging it's traditional Office desktop productivity suite for a number of different platforms (PC software, web app, tablet) and selling methods (per year/user subscription vs purchase). It's created a bunch of confusion about what each offering includes (see this Supersite article).

Here's a list of what each products includes:

Office 2013

This is the latest version of the popular Microsoft Office suite. It's sold at different price points with different configurations but the full version includes the following products:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • OneNote
  • Outlook
  • Publisher
  • Access
  • InfoPath

Office 365 Home Premium

This is a consumer-based subscription service to the Office line. It includes access to Office 2013 Professional desktop applications on up to 5 Macs or PCs for $99.99 a year. It also includes the Office web applications, 20GB SkyDrive storage and 60 Skype world minutes per month.

Office 365 for Business

This is a business-focused subscription service for the Office line. It is sold in a number of different tiers for different sized businesses but generally at a per user/month scale with tiers capped at numbers of users. The tiers generally include hosted Exchange email, SharePoint, Office Web Applications and Lync services. The product tiers can include access to the desktop applications, hosted websites and IT management services.

Office RT

This is a stripped down version of the Office suite that is shipped with the Windows RT operating system. The shipped applications have been recompiled to work on the ARM platform. For now this suite is limited to the following applications:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • OneNote
  • PowerPoint
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