Microsoft 365 (M365) and Office 365 (O365) are two plans launched by Microsoft. These include various cloud productivity services that are renowned across the globe.
Service Providers, in particular, find them very useful for proceeding with clients’ businesses on the cloud. Both plans have several differences between them, which may be useful for a user to know which one to work on.
- M365 (Microsoft 365) is a cloud-based subscription service with Office apps, collaboration tools, and security features.
- O365 (Office 365) is a similar cloud-based subscription service that includes Office apps and other productivity tools but lacks some of the security features of M365.
- M365 is more expensive than O365 but offers more comprehensive features.
Microsoft M365 vs O365
Microsoft M365 is a service plan provided by Microsoft that includes various software features, including basic Microsoft apps, machine learning, EMS, and Windows 10 support. Microsoft O365 is a cloud productivity suite that is aimed at corporate users, and it includes Microsoft apps, SharePoint, Exchange, and Lync.
The two terms have a lot of confusion surrounding them, especially due to the fact that Microsoft 365 is essentially a new name for Office 365.
However, M365 offers several additional features over the latter, some of which include support for Windows 10, cloud-based security, an enterprising license, and other device management products.
Meanwhile, O365 only offers basic Microsoft applications with no additional features. However, the plan does include hosted Microsoft Exchange which adds a slight degree of security.
The add-on features allow compliance with independent applications such as Project. Furthermore, the suite is branched into two categories – O365 Enterprise and O365 Business.
|Parameters of Comparison
|M365 was launched in April 2020.
|O365 was launched in June 2011.
|It is a product bundle that includes Office 365 along with other services.
|It is a cloud productivity suite that offers basic Microsoft applications.
|Additional features include support for Windows 10, machine learning, EMS, and much more.
|The plan does not include additional features that M365 offers.
|It has 3 categories – M365 Business, M365 Enterprise, and M365 Education.
|It has 2 categories – O365 Enterprise and O365 Business.
|It is more expensive than the latter.
|It is cheaper than the former.
What is Microsoft M365?
Microsoft 365 (M365) is a service plan offered by Microsoft that includes various software features. It was launched in 2017 when it was sold under the name ‘Office 365’. However, the name was changed to ‘Microsoft 365’ in 2020.
The subscription plan provides basic Microsoft applications, including Office 365. Additional features such as support for Windows 10, machine learning, and EMS are included as well.
The service is offered in 3 main categories – M365 Business, M365 Enterprise, and M365 Education. Each segment caters to a different need and provides different features.
M365 Business is suitable for small to medium-sized organizations. M365 Enterprise is targeted towards large organizations as multiple users can log in to the software at once.
M365 is suitable for schools, colleges, and universities to enhance learning activities.
Plans included in the suite are subjected to automatic updating without any extra cost. This is opposed to conventional licenses for the suite. Earlier, every new version came with a cost for new licensing.
Moreover, the software offers free registration processes to certain universities, colleges, and schools. The suite is part of Microsoft Education Solutions. This and ground-breaking AI features make the product quite popular in the market.
What is O365?
Office 365 (O365) is a cloud productivity suite that was announced in 2010 and released in 2011. The product was aimed at corporate users and had two categories for the same – O365 Enterprise and O365 Business.
It offered basic Microsoft applications such as Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint. However, in 2013, an updated version was released that allowed general consumers to reap the benefits of the plan as well.
Microsoft launched this suite with the aim of bringing together existing businesses with premium cloud services. It incorporated SharePoint, Lync, and even Exchange servers.
On its release, existing users were given 12 months to shift from BPOs to the new suite platform. Licenses for Professional Plus Software and 24/7 customer support made the product immensely popular in the corporate world.
All the services offered in O365 are managed and configured by means of an online portal. Users can be supplemented to the program manually, through a CSV file being imported, or by setting up for a single sign-in on the suite.
A limitation of the product is that most of its features cannot be accessed on the mobile application. However, basic editing and document creation are available for personal use.
Main Differences Between Microsoft M365 and O365
- M365 was launched in April 2020, whereas O365 was launched in June 2011.
- M365 is a product bundle that includes Office 365 and other services, whereas O365 is a cloud productivity suite offering basic Microsoft applications.
- Additional features in M365 include support for Windows 10, machine learning, EMS, and much more, whereas O365 does not include additional features that M365 offers.
- M365 has 3 categories – M365 Business, M365 Enterprise, and M365 Education, whereas O365 has 2 categories – O365 Enterprise and O365 Business.
- M365 is expensive, whereas O365 is cheaper than the former.
Last Updated : 11 June, 2023
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Sandeep Bhandari holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Computers from Thapar University (2006). He has 20 years of experience in the technology field. He has a keen interest in various technical fields, including database systems, computer networks, and programming. You can read more about him on his bio page.