What does Office Online mean for students?

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We made an announcement at the end of last week about the name and easier access to the online versions of Office. I think this is important for Australian students and teachers, as it is now much easier for students and staff to be able to use Office on the web. Anybody can do it – they don’t need an Office subscription, nor do they need their school, TAFE or university to set up Office 365 Education access. So a student can login to Office Online* and start creating, editing and sharing documents, either alone or with others – from almost any device and without a subscription service (all they need to do is create a Microsoft Account, which can be done with any email address).

* Office Online is the new name for Office Web Apps, and includes the browser-based versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote.

The Office team have put many of the details on the Office blog, and here’s a quick snip from there:


imageSure, some of you are already using the online versions of Office. And with the recent addition of real-time co-authoring and more of the most commonly used features coming online over the last several months, we hear that you’re liking it. But we also know that many of the one billion Office users haven’t tried it yet and we want to change that.

New name, new getting started experience

Today we are making two changes. First, we’re renaming Office Web Apps to Office Online so you know where to find our free online experience. We heard from customers that the inclusion of Apps in our name was confusing. Are they something I install? Do I go to an app store to get them? No, to use them all you need is a web browser. Ah! You say. So it’s like Office, online. Yes, exactly. Office Online.

Secondly, a lot of you don’t know that we have an online version of Office because you just couldn’t find it. If you’re already using Office Online on OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) or on SharePoint at work, great. We’re glad you found it there. You can still use Office Online just like you always have. But we’re making it easier to find for the rest of you by introducing Office.com, a discoverable and shareable web page so that you can start using Office Online right away.


So now you have lots of different ways of ensuring that your students and staff can use Office:

  • Microsoft Office for no cost through a browser on Office Online 
  • Mobile versions of Microsoft Office pre-installed on your Windows Phone, and through an Office 365 subscription for iPhone and Android phone
  • Full versions of the Office suite for Windows and Mac, through Office 365 or your institution’s EES agreement. And this can be free for students using the Student Advantage scheme.

Learn MoreRead more about Office Online

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