Office may or may not work with Microsoft 365 after end of mainstream support

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 10, 2022
Microsoft Office
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Microsoft has the habit of being very cautious when it comes to communication with the public and its customers. The company's communication is often unclear and open for interpretation. Whether intentional or not, a lack of information may have consequences for Microsoft customers.

A recent example is Microsoft's Office versions and connectivity to Microsoft 365 services support page. In it, Microsoft is warning perpetual license Office customers that their versions of Office may run into connectivity issues with the company's Microsoft 365 service and its products.

Perpetual licenses are licenses for standalone Office products. Unlike subscription-based products, perpetual license products are purchased with one-time payments.

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Microsoft lists the Office products that "are supported for connecting to Microsoft 365 (and Office 365) services in the beginning. Next to Microsoft 365 apps for Enterprise and business, these are Office 2016, 2019 and LTSC 2021.

Examples of Microsoft 365 services include Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and OneDrive for Business.

A note reveals that Office 2019 and 2016 will be "supported for connecting to Microsoft 365 (and Office 365) services until October 2023. Support for Office 2016 and 2019 ends on October 14, 2025. Office 2016 is in its extended support phase already, where it will be joined by Office 2019 in October 2023.

A paragraph marked important highlights that Microsoft won't block the connectivity of Office versions that are still supported and are up to date. The clients may experience performance or reliability issues, however, according to Microsoft.

We won’t take any active measures to block other versions of the Office client that are still supported and are up to date, such as Office 2013 with Service Pack 1, from connecting to Microsoft 365 services. But these older clients may encounter performance or reliability issues over time.

If read correctly, it means that Microsoft won't block other versions of Office that are still supported from connecting to Microsoft 365 services. It makes no mention of how Microsoft plans to deal with unsupported versions of Office.

The Office version that Microsoft highlights, Office 2013 with Service Pack 1, reaches end of support on April 11, 2023.

Microsoft is deliberately vague on the page. It is unclear whether this is intentional, for instance to scare customers into purchasing new Office versions or switching to subscriptions, or not.

Here is what Microsoft (likely) wants to communicate:

All Office versions that are no longer in mainstream support may run into connectivity issues with Microsoft 365 services, because Microsoft won't take these older versions into account anymore when developing features for Microsoft 365 or making changes to the service.

That is all. There won't be any active blocking on Microsoft's side, but changes made to Microsoft 365 may lead to connectivity issues.

Now You: do you use Microsoft Office? (via ZDnet, Dr. Windows)

Summary
Article Name
Office may or may not work with Microsoft 365 after end of mainstream support
Description
Microsoft published vague information about Office and connectivity to Microsoft 365 services on a support page. Here is what Microsoft meant.
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Ghacks Technology News
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Comments

  1. Frankel said on August 10, 2022 at 4:25 pm
    Reply

    >Now You: do you use Microsoft Office?

    Yes the cloudless versions that are still being sold. I don’t need no connectivity of my private data to some corporation’s data syphon — Hot take: Everyone forgot Snowden yet?

  2. Anonymous said on August 10, 2022 at 5:33 pm
    Reply

    What are Microsoft 365 services?

  3. Anonymous said on August 11, 2022 at 2:24 am
    Reply

    Out of work, people still use Office? I switched to open source long ago.

  4. 58sotong said on August 11, 2022 at 6:16 am
    Reply

    Nothing new in fact. For years MS tried to push stand alone users into their online service packages. For which as everybody know one has to pay annual fee. Great for business and shareholders, not so much for users

  5. kalmly said on August 11, 2022 at 3:55 pm
    Reply

    An old pre-ribbon version of MS Office is installed on one computer because of my love for Access. Mostly, I use a couple of very nice alternatives to the MS monster. I don’t care to work online. Ever.

    @Frankel: No. I have not forgotten Snowden.

  6. Patrick said on August 11, 2022 at 8:02 pm
    Reply

    Open Office. Free and open source. Easier to use.

  7. D said on August 12, 2022 at 4:41 am
    Reply

    Switched to OnlyOffice several years back.

  8. Kev said on August 18, 2022 at 6:51 pm
    Reply

    I have office….older versions that I paid for…2007…2010…2013 all of which I got at a huge discount as a student and kept primarily for Outlook. MS Exchange no longer supports Outlook so I no longer use it and I no longer have use for Microflaccid junk. I started Libraoffice because I cant stand OpenOffice and Thunderbird….and have switched primarily to Linux rather than the garbage Microflaccid and Billy Fakes keeps spewing forth in their MoneySoft and InfoMine companies. I’ll pay for software once if I think it’s good and maybe newer versions if they have features I want and need…which isn’t very often….but paying each month to use software in the rip-off “software as a service” world is just not a place I’m going; I’ll junk my computer and go offline completely if we ever get to that point.

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