Office Online branding retired

Microsoft announce that they have decided to retire the term “Office Online”, and the apps such as “Word Online” will now be referred to as “Word for the web” or “Word in a browser”. This means that the August 2019 Product Terms is updated too with all references to “Office Online” changed to “Office for the web”. Note that there are no changes to the name of the Office Online Server product.

Find the announcement here:

Office Online Server

The usage rights for customers to use Office Online Server are extended: the August 2016 Product Terms document states that as long as customers purchase Office Standard 2016 or Office Professional Plus 2016 licences before 1 August 2016 then they may use Office Online Server until 1 August 2019 (page 23). Previously, it was stated that the licences needed to be purchased between 1 May 2016 and 1 August 2016.

New Office VL Brief

There’s an updated (June 2016) “Licensing Microsoft Office software in Volume Licensing ” VL Brief which is updated for Office Online Server. This is the successor product to Office Web Apps Server 2013 and provides browser-based versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote from on-premises environments.

For details on the licensing, the FAQs on page 8 are useful, but in summary: there are no licences required for viewing documents, but create/edit/save rights are an SA benefit and included in an Office 365 ProPlus subscription.

However, there’s an exception which means that licences bought without SA before 1 August 2016 don’t need SA before 1 August 2019.

Find the guide in the Desktop section of our Licensing Guides emporium:

Office Online Server in Preview

Office Web Apps Server was launched in 2012 to provide browser-based versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote running on a standalone on-premises server. The Web Apps later changed their name to Office Online and now the server follows suit – Office Online Server (OOS) is now in preview as the successor to Office Web Apps Server, but there’s no word yet on whether the licensing changes.

Find the announcement here:

Product and SA Changes in the April 2014 Product List

There are some interesting product changes to the April 2014 Product List; it’s not often we see changes to the SA benefits – this month there are two – and the importance of the cloud is confirmed with two new Online Services and just one new on-premises product.

Product Changes

  • Firstly, there’s a like for like replacement for SQL 2012 products for their new, shinier SQL 2014 equivalents, representing minimal changes to the licensing between versions. You need to go to the April 2014 PUR to find documentation of the two notable changes in SQL 2014 licensing: BI CALs are waived for batch processing, and the licensing of a passive server is now an SA benefit
  • Microsoft Social Listening SKUs are added – both the standalone Social Listening Professional USL and the Add-on USL for organisations that are already licensed with an on-premises Dynamics CRM Professional CAL – with active SA of course. And if you’re wondering precisely what “social listening” may be, then, in a nutshell, it’s a service to monitor social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. If you want more information on the product, then this datasheet is worth a scan:
  • The USL for OneDrive for Business is also added and gives licensed users access to Office Online too
  • The Windows Industry SKUs follow in the footsteps of their close relative, Windows 8.1, with the Enterprise edition being available as a standalone SKU and SA just allowed to be added to the Enterprise edition. Naturally, there’s a “with MDOP” edition too. There are two flavours of each SKU dependent on which devices the licences are being assigned to, and there’s a table which helps you to decide which one is required as long as you know what operating system the device is currently licensed for

Software Assurance Changes

  • Previously, Office licences purchased through a Volume Licensing program gave access to “Office Web Apps”. This is now changed so that rights to an on-premises deployment through Office Web Apps Server 2013 are included with the licence, and rights to Office Online are only available as an SA benefit. There’s also a note that users must be licensed for SharePoint Online to access the Office Online service
  • Given the ever closer licensing between Windows 8.1 and its first cousin, Windows Industry, the “Enhanced Edition Benefits” is a new benefit for both these products which allows the deployment of either edition under active SA