What’s the difference between Office 2019 and Office 365 ProPlus?

Microsoft Office is the most popular productivity suite in the world. According to The Financial Post, over 1 billion people across all work fields use Microsoft Office on a regular basis. Essential Office software components like Word, Excel and PowerPoint are considered cornerstone applications in today’s business world.

Since 2011, Microsoft has split its Office offerings into two main product categories: Microsoft Office, the stand-alone traditional suite, and Office 365, the online subscription-based service. Through both products, Microsoft offers numerous plans to choose from depending on your organization’s needs and budget.

This blog post covers the differences between Microsoft Office 2019 and its online counterpart, Office 365 ProPlus.The two products are often mentioned together due to the shared target audience, but there are more than subtle variations that set apart Office 365 ProPlus from Microsoft Office 2019.

Before we start
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What is Office 365 ProPlus?

Note that Office 365 ProPlus was essentially renamed Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise in April 2020.

Office 365 ProPlus is an online subscription-based suite of productivity tools that helps small and medium organizations manage day-to-day business operations. The ProPlus plan comes with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, and Access as well as Skype for Business. In addition to the standard Office applications, Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus also includes sharing and security options that enable users within an organization to safely collaborate with each other across multiple devices.

Office 365 ProPlus provides both cloud-based and on-premises options to deliver the right set of capabilities to your organization. As a comprehensive plan for businesses, Office 365 ProPlus gives you the most recent version of Microsoft Office, with all the features and functionality. And while the Office 365 ProPlus plan does not include any online services like the full version of Teams, Exchange Online, and SharePoint Online, subscribers can use 1 TB of OneDrive cloud storage.

Here are some of the standout features offered with an Office 365 ProPlus subscription:

  • Office Web Apps (renamed to Office for the web): With a Microsoft Office 365 Pro Plus license, you can install Office applications onsite on up to five different computers, five tablets, and five mobile devices. And just like most other Office 365 and Microsoft 365 plans, the Pro Plus plan includes Office Web Apps. Basically, Office Web Apps is a version of Microsoft Office that enables you to create, view, and edit documents online in your web browser. It includes most of the features of Microsoft Word, Excel, One Note, and PowerPoint. What makes Office web apps so useful is that they can be accessed from anywhere, as long as users have internet access. For businesses, this means employees can finish work at home or even while commuting.
  • Click-to-Run: The easiest way to deploy Office 365 ProPlus on your organization’s computers is using the Click-to-Run technology. Microsoft introduced Click-to-Run as an alternative to traditional Office installation methods to give you more control over when and how Office updates are applied. With Click-to-Run, you don’t need to be connected to the internet all the time to access the Office apps. However, you are required to verify the Office license once every 30 days to avoid activating the Reduced Functionality mode (in this mode, users are only allowed to open and view their files).
  • Microsoft FastTrack: To accelerate your organization’s cloud adoption, you can utilize the technical support services provided by Microsoft FastTrack. Through FastTrack, Microsoft offers you resources, tools, and best practices to help you plan for a successful Office 365 deployment. You can request professional guidance from FastTrack specialists to help you transform your existing IT practices and effectively manage your cloud migration.
  • Security Policy Advisor: Security Policy Advisor is an Office 365 service that assesses your organization’s compliance with the security standards set forth by Microsoft. Security Policy Advisor helps you secure your data by identifying potential risks and security issues in your organization’s usage of Office 365. Security Policy Advisor gives you recommendations for how to fix or prevent the identified security and compliance issues in order to keep your organization safe and compliant.
  • Intelligent services: Intelligent cloud services are integrated into the Office 365 ProPlus core applications to help streamline your workflow.
    • Ideas for Excel helps you better understand data with high-level visual summaries, patterns, and trends.
    • PowerPoint Designer generates design ideas for your slides based upon the content of your slides.
    • Researcher in Word uses Bing to pull in relevant content from the web and provide structured, safe, and credible information.

If your organization is looking to deploy the latest version of Microsoft Office, then Office 365 ProPlus is a great solution. With a Microsoft Office 365 Pro Plus subscription, you have the flexibility of installing your productivity apps directly to users’ devices through the Microsoft Store for Business. That means no more CD/DVDs and no more manual installations of new applications.

To sum things up, here is a list of the features included in the Office 365 ProPlus plan:

  • Up-to-date Office apps: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, and Access
  • 1 TB of OneDrive cloud storage
  • Office for the web: Word, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Excel
  • The free trial version of Microsoft Teams
  • Microsoft FastTrack assistance
  • Security Policy Advisor
  • Intelligent services: Ideas for Excel, PowerPoint Designer, Researcher in Word
  • USD 12.00 per user/month

What is Microsoft Office 2019?

Microsoft Office 2019 is the 18th stand-alone iteration of Microsoft’s flagship suite of applications.

There are five Office 2019 editions available for users to choose from: Home & Student, Home & Business, Standard, Professional, and Professional Plus. The three core Office applications, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are included in all five editions. Other productivity tools like Skype for Business and Publisher are exclusive to higher-tier editions.

Price Office Applications
Home & Student USD 150 Word, Excel, PowerPoint
Home & Business USD 250 Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook
Standard USD 410 Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher
Professional USD 440 Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher (Windows only), Access (Windows only)
Professional Plus USD 559 Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher (Windows only), Access (Windows only), Skype for Business

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Each Office 2019 edition comes in versions for either Windows or the last three releases of macOS. A user with an Office 2019 license can install the suite on one computer only. Mobile versions of all the Office 2019 apps can also be installed on phones and tablets but are limited in features and functionality.

Unlike the Office 365 and Microsoft 365 plans, Office 2019 does not require a subscription.

Adopters of Office 2019 pay a one-time upfront fee for their download or disc and can use the purchased software under a perpetual license. Users can keep on using Office 2019 indefinitely but Microsoft plans on ending the product’s support in October 2025. This means that Office 2019 will stop receiving monthly security and quality updates almost seven years after its initial release. Highly active Office users may then want to upgrade to the next version of Office to avoid stability and performance issues. Note that a user is required to pay the full price to upgrade to the next major release of Office (for example, upgrading from Office 2019 to Office 2021).

Microsoft Office 2019 is ideal for users who are just looking to use the traditional features of applications such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and are not interested in some of the more advanced collaborative options that come with Office 365.

Office 2019 vs Office 365

While both Office 365 ProPlus and Office 2019 include Microsoft’s traditional on-premises productivity applications like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, clear differences between the two products also exist.

Office 365 ProPlus is a business version of Microsoft Office that provides you with the ability to install Office applications on multiple computers. In addition, the Office 365 ProPlus plan comes with OneDrive. This allows you to keep your files in sync across computers and even share them with other users through cloud storage and collaborative editing tools. You can also communicate, share documents and presentations, conduct video conferences and send instant messages online through Skype for Business.

Also, the new Office 365 ProPlus plan is easier than ever for IT admins to deploy, manage and support. You can easily manage who has access to which apps and how they use them on their devices through the new unified administration experience in the Office 365 Admin Center. Using this new experience, you can quickly assign apps to different groups of users based on business needs or preferences.

Office 365 ProPlus Microsoft Office 2019
Price USD 12 USD 150 - USD 559
License/Device per user Monthly subscription/up to five PCs, five tablets, and five mobile devices per user Perpetual license/one computer per user
Office Applications Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher, Skype for Business, Teams (free trial) Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access (Windows only), OneNote (2016 version), Outlook, Publisher (Windows only), Skype for Business
Web Applications Word, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Excel None
New Features Ideas for Excel, PowerPoint Designer, Researcher in Word, Microsoft FastTrack, Click-to-Run Click-to-Run
Online Storage 1TB in OneDrive None
Security Security Policy Advisor, regular security updates Monthly security updates
Updates Automatically updating to the latest version of Office apps and introducing new features and options, security updates Security and stability updates only

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Office 365 ProPlus is one of the most feature-packed and stable plans an organization can adopt because of the regular and cumulative update system that Microsoft has set in place. Automatic security and feature updates are enabled by default in Office 365 ProPlus but an IT administrator can manually manage other users’ update frequency. You can choose to apply updates to Office applications in two different ways: monthly basis or semi-annual.

On the other hand, Microsoft Office 2019 updates consist of security/performance patches and include any new features. As a result, Office 365 ProPlus is always one step ahead of Office’s local version in terms of features.

Office 2019 is dedicated to users who are not ready to migrate their workflow to the cloud and don’t want to pay a monthly subscription fee to keep on using the Office applications. But in recent years, more and more users have shifted towards the subscription-based Office 365 and Microsoft 365 plans. Microsoft is heavily supporting its cloud-based products by offering regular updates, keeping Office applications up-to-date.

Wrapping up

In conclusion, Office 365 ProPlus is Microsoft Office 2019 with added artificial intelligence options, a robust online security system, and cloud storage. Office 365 ProPlus subscribers always have access to the latest and most up-to-date version of Office and should not worry about upgrading to a new on-premise version of Office every few years.

However, solely relying on Microsoft’s security options may leave your Office 365 ProPlus data vulnerable to lose as a result of cyber threats such as ransomware attacks. A third-party backup solution, like the fully-featured NAKIVO Backup & Replication, may be necessary to protect your Microsoft 365 data against ransomware and other malicious software. Download the Free Edition of NAKIVO Backup & Replication, run incremental backups of your Microsoft 365 data, and make sure you retain control over your organization’s SaaS data.

What’s the difference between Office 2019 and Office 365 ProPlus?
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