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Don’t Pay For Word! Reasons You Should Use Office Online

Microsoft is not known for its quick adoption of new trends, but when it does get on board, it often tries to make-up for lost time with gobs of money and hoards of experienced software engineers.

This strategy seems to be working with Office Online, a cloud-connected version of the world’s most popular productivity software that is free to use (with limitations) and offers a buffet of useful features. Companies will even find Office Online useful, if they already have copies of Office installed on their computers.

Access Your Documents From Anywhere

One of Office Online’s most obvious advantages is its cloud storage connectivity. Documents, spreadsheets and presentations use the online interface and are automatically saved to OneDrive. They can be opened from any computer. A file can also be saved to a local PC and iPad.

In short, it works like any other cloud productivity service. This is not an advantage relative to those, but it is an advantage to a huge number of Office owners. Office did not bundle OneDrive connectivity until the introduction of Office 2013, so there’s a ton of users with older versions of Office (for PC and for Mac) who lack this feature.

Share and Collaborate On Documents In Real-Time

Office has included collaboration tools for many years and important tool that many organizations love to use. This remains a problem in the desktop apps, but Office Online is a bit more welcoming.

Documents created in Office Online are easy to share with others, because they’re automatically stored in OneDrive as a default setting, which lets users share with other people with a Microsoft account or by generating and sending a link. Users given editing permission can collaborate with another person in real-time, and each user can see the others as they work. This is especially easy when users are using the same domain name.

Office Online, however, is available on anything that can run a web browser. There’s also free apps for Android and iOS phones. While not called Office Online, the app versions of Office 365 are basically that, as they share the same restrictions and advantages.

This makes Office Online great for anyone who owns an Android tablet with a keyboard, a Linux PC or a Chromebook. Yes, Google Documents and other services are available, but Office Online provides highly accurate Office file format support, 15 gigabytes of free storage and easy connectivity with Office 365.

The online version is also surprisingly fast. In fact, it sometimes feels quicker than the desktop application on old systems with limited RAM and a slow mechanical hard drive. And, since files are stored in the cloud, they don’t eat into a user’s valuable hard drive space or become lost in a tangle of folders.

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