For years, Microsoft has charged hundreds of dollars to buy Microsoft Office, their suite of office programs such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. And each year, Microsoft would come out with newer versions of these programs requiring users to pay to upgrade their copies. However with the advent of cloud computing, users no longer to need to buy and install software. And Microsoft has responded to consumer demand for a cloud-based Office suite of products. That is versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and more that don’t need to be downloaded and installed on your computer’s hard drive by putting them online at their new Office Live site.
And what’s even better about the cloud based versions of these programs is that individual users can use basic versions of these popular programs for free. That’s right, Microsoft has made their cloud based Microsoft Office programs free for individual users. Additionally you will also get, for free, cloud based storage for your documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. Now these are basic versions of the programs, and don’t include all the bells and whistles that the full version include. But the basic versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint include the features that most individual users need.
The cloud based storage of your documents means you can store copies of school papers, your resume, or anything you’re created with Word, Excel, or PowerPoint and access them from any computer, tablet, or device with an internet connection. By using cloud based storage, you will no longer have to worry about not being able to access a document you’ve stored on your home PC while you’re at work. You’ll no longer have to worry about storing all your work on a USB stick only to lose the USB stick and all of your documents.
If you do what the full versions of the programs, or if you’re a business with multiple users, you can subscribe to Microsoft Office Live and get access the the full versions. In addition to the full versions of the programs, a paid Microsoft Office Live subscription includes additional features such as extra storage space for your documents as well as 60 minutes of world calling on Skype (calls to more than 60 countries).
To begin using the free versions of the Office programs, go to office.live.com. Once there, you’ll need to create an account. Just enter a few details and you’ll be set-up and ready to use the cloud based Microsoft Office suite as well as the cloud based storage.