Microsoft 365 has revolutionized the way businesses operate by providing cloud-based services that enable employees to work remotely, collaborate effectively, and stay productive. Three of the most popular subscription plans are Microsoft 365 Business Basic, Microsoft 365 Business Standard, and Microsoft 365 Premium. In this article, we will explore the differences between the three and help you decide which is best suited for your business.
Microsoft 365 Business Basic is the most affordable option and includes Exchange for email and access to web-based versions of the Microsoft Office apps like Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. This subscription also includes SharePoint and OneDrive for Business for cloud storage, as well as Microsoft Teams for chat and video conferencing, making it ideal for small businesses or those with basic needs and who do not require access to the installed versions of the Office apps. The installed version of the Teams app, however, is available.
Microsoft 365 Business Standard includes everything in the Basic subscription, plus the ability to install the Microsoft Office apps on up to five devices per user. This subscription is ideal for businesses that require access to the full suite of Office apps on their desktop or mobile devices. It is worth noting that for heavy and advanced Excel users, the web-based version of Excel that comes with the Basic subscription will not be suitable due to certain features that are only available in the installed version of the app, making the Microsoft 365 Business Standard subscription the cheapest viable option.
Microsoft 365 Premium includes additional features like advanced security and compliance tools that provide capabilities beyond those provided by the Basic and Standard subscriptions. Another key difference is the ability to use shared computer activation, which allows multiple users to use the same device with their own individual logins. This is essential for organizations that have shared workstations or kiosks, such as in a library or school environment.
Additionally, Microsoft 365 Premium includes the ability to use Microsoft Intune, a cloud-based device management service that allows businesses to manage and secure devices and applications from a central location. This includes features such as remote wiping of devices, enforcing security policies, and managing software updates. For businesses that require a higher level of device management and security or are looking to move away from on-premises servers, Premium is the recommended option.
In summary, businesses can choose from three different Microsoft 365 subscriptions based on their needs and budget. It is also important to remember that subscriptions can be mixed depending on the needs of individuals. For those with basic needs and who are happy with web-based access to the Office apps, the Business Basic subscription is a great option, while the Business Standard subscription is ideal for those requiring access to the full suite of Office apps. Finally, the Premium subscription is required for advanced features such as device management and shared computer usage scenarios.
As of April 2023, the cost for Microsoft 365 Business Basic is £3.80 per user per month, Microsoft 365 Business Standard is £9.40 per user per month, and Microsoft 365 Business Premium is £15.10 per user per month. These prices may vary depending on the specific licensing agreements and options chosen.