Office 2013: a fine product, just don’t buy it

Readers and friends know I am a HUGE fan of Microsoft and, generally, love their products. Windows 7 and 8 are the best versions of Windows to date and Office 2013 is the best version of that product, hands down. I am also going on record saying that you should STAY AWAY from the latest and greatest version of Office, unless you are a business OR you subscribe to the suite. IF you purchase, outri…ght, Office Home and Student, Home Office OR the full suite, you will ONLY BE ABLE TO INSTALL THE PRODUCT ON ONE COMPUTER. If that computer dies, so does your license. Once installed and activated, the product cannot be transferred to another machine. You cannot even uninstall and reinstall on another device. The activation TIES the product to what ever you install it on. Microsoft has verified this to be true. Of course, there are exceptions, but you must call and plead your case. Microsoft claims this has always been the case, but, now, there are mechanisms in place to will stop the product from going on more than one computer.

However, IF you subscribe to Office 365, you can put it on up to five devices as well as use ONE piece of the product ad-hoc. That is, if you are away from one of your five machines, but need to edit that presentation or update a spreadsheet, you may download on demand, which is quick, use the product and then, upon closing, the product disappears from that machine. The cost of the subscription is $99 a year. And, really, that’s not so bad…if you must use it on more than one computer AND you always want the latest version.

I would recommend continuing with an older version if you have it OR going with something like LibreOffice or OpenOffice, both of which are free and mostly compatible with MS Office. (Don’t forget, you can use the web based Office for free, with your SkyDrive account.)

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