Microsoft announce the General Availability of Windows Virtual Desktop on 30 September, 2019: http://bit.ly/33abTIG. This page is a useful reminder of the licences required to access WVD: http://bit.ly/2UxKalz, and it’s been updated with the changes to the Microsoft 365 licence assignment rules where customers can now assign Microsoft 365 licences to any user, regardless of the user’s primary device, to use WVD and Office 365 – see the September 2019 Product Terms for details. If you’re a partner, then you’ll find some useful partner resources on WVD here: http://bit.ly/33fm4eS.
Microsoft announce that Planner will be added to Microsoft 365 F1 and Office 365 F1 commercial and government plans starting at the beginning of October 2019. The Planner functionality is the same as in higher level plans, and there’s no action for a customer to take.
Find the announcement here: http://bit.ly/2lStHb5.
Microsoft announce an Office 365 ProPlus Device-based Subscription for Education, which means that educational institutions can now assign an Office 365 ProPlus licence to a device rather than a user – useful, of course, where shared devices are used.
The experience for users is that those who DO have a User Subscription Licence including Office 365 ProPlus will be able to use the apps on the licensed device as well as their associated cloud services like OneDrive, while completely unlicensed users will be able to use the apps on the device and to save files locally. Using Office 365 ProPlus in this way doesn’t count towards one of the five allowed installations for a licensed user.
This new, free, add-on licence is available from 16 August, 2019 for customers who have an Enrollment for Education Solutions (EES) agreement where they’ve covered all Education Qualified Users with Office 365 ProPlus or a suite that includes it. They’re then entitled to as many Device-based Subscriptions as the number of Education Qualified Users.
The Device-based Subscription replaces the Lab and Library benefit that was the previous solution for institutions needing Office installed on a device basis, and note that this benefit remains for OVS-ES agreements where the new solution is not available.
Microsoft announce that there will be some changes to the licensing and activation of the subscription-based Office clients such as Office 365 ProPlus.
Users will be able to install Office on a new device without being prompted to deactivate Office on another device when they reach the five-device limit, and will simply be signed out of Office on the device where Office has been least recently used.
These changes will start rolling out to customers from August, with exact timings dependent on which release channel a customer is using.
Find the full announcement here: http://bit.ly/2JZZctp.
Microsoft change the minimum requirements for the Multi-Geo capabilities in Office 365 from 2,500 Office 365 licences to 500. What is Multi-Geo? Essentially it allows a single Office 365 tenant to span across multiple Office 365 data centre geographies and gives customers the ability to store their Exchange and OneDrive data, at-rest, on a per-user basis, in their chosen geographies. You can imagine this helps some organisations to meet their data residency requirements.
Find out more about Multi-Geo here: http://bit.ly/2EOBkWx and see page 61 of the June 2019 Product Terms for an overview of the licensing requirements. Find the Product Terms document here: http://bit.ly/MSproductterms.
There’s an updated FAQ on the Home Use Program with two main items of interest.
Firstly, the number of qualifying Office 365/Microsoft 365 licences that education or non-profit customers need is reduced to 2,000 to match the requirements for commercial or government customers.
Secondly, there are instructions added for IT administrators to manage the HUP benefit through the Microsoft Store for Business.
Find the FAQ here: http://bit.ly/2Y45JrL.
If you’ve got an interest in deploying Office 365 ProPlus in an enterprise environment then the list of articles here (http://bit.ly/2GaurkA) is worth a look.
Of particular usefulness to those focusing on licensing is an “Overview of Shared Computer Activation for Office 365 ProPlus” (http://bit.ly/2t4biIn) and an “Overview of Licensing and Activation in Office 365 ProPlus” (http://bit.ly/2MLhSwy).
One for your weekend reading list!
The new Office 365 Home Use Program benefit is added to the February 2019 Product Terms. If a customer has SAM coverage on the Applications pool then employees may buy an Office 365 Home or Personal subscription through the Microsoft Home Use Program website at a discounted rate.
What’s interesting (and different to its Office 2019 HUP counterpart) is that employees may renew the subscription at the special HUP price regardless of whether they’re still employed by the qualifying organisation and that organisation’s SAM coverage status.
Find these details on page 80 and get the February 2019 Product Terms here: http://bit.ly/MSproductterms.
Microsoft announce that Office 365 for Mac is now available on the Mac App store, where users with an Office 365 subscription that includes the Office apps will be able to install the Mac versions of the Office products with a single click.
Find the announcement here: http://bit.ly/2RAfNV6 Apple also make the announcement (https://apple.co/2WhsCY4) highlighting the further benefit that businesses will now be able to use the Apple Business Manager to easily distribute the apps to employees.
Microsoft announce that Office 2016 will continue to be able to connect to Office 365 services through October 2023. The previous support policy mandated that after 13 October, 2020 customers would be required to have either Office 365 ProPlus or Office 2019 to connect to these services. Find the announcement towards the bottom of this page: http://bit.ly/2N3kqty.