The ITAM Review

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What is Microsoft 365?

Last week saw Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference, newly christened “Inspire”, take place and one of the announcements was Microsoft 365.

What is it?

Microsoft 365 is, in part, a new evolution of Secure Productive Enterprise (SPE)…which was itself the progression of the Enterprise Cloud Suite (ECS).

Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 is a single SKU that combines:

  • Windows 10
  • Office 365
  • Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS)

Just as its previous iterations did. However, there is a change – we now have:

Microsoft 365 Enterprise

And

Microsoft 365 Business

Microsoft 365 Enterprise

As the name suggests, this is aimed at larger organisations and, as with SPE before it, comes in two flavours:

  • E3
  • E5

with each package including the respective versions of the components i.e.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise E3 & E5 will be available to buy from August 1, 2017.

Microsoft 365 Business

Aimed at organisations with fewer than 300 users, this is a combination of:

  • Office 365 Business Premium
  • Windows 10
  • Enterprise Mobility & Security

It should be noted that the Microsoft launch blog says:

“with tailored security and management features from Windows 10 and Enterprise Mobility + Security” (emphasis my own)

so it will be interesting to see exactly what is/isn’t included in Microsoft 365 Business when it launches.

A public preview will begin on August 2, 2017 and worldwide availability is scheduled for autumn 2017 with a price of $20 per user per month.

Microsoft are also adding a range of new apps to Office 365 Business Premium & Microsoft 365 Business.

Conclusion

It doesn’t seem that there are many/any changes between SPE & Microsoft 365 Enterprise, so organisations already licensed with the bundled SKU shouldn’t see any real impact.

Microsoft 365 Business is an interesting new addition, over and above Office 365 Business Premium, and certainly looks as though it will make it easier for sub-300 seat organisations to benefit from Microsoft’s latest technologies.

I do wonder about the name though. I’m sure there are more than a few people who refer to Office 365 as “Microsoft 365” and that we’ll see one or two confused conversations!

 

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About Rich Gibbons

Rich has been in the world of IT and software licensing since 2003, having been a software sales manager for a VAR, a Microsoft licensing endorsed trainer, and now an ITAM analyst looking at software licensing and cloud.

A Northerner renowned for his shirts, Rich is a big Hip-Hop head, and loves travel, football in general (specifically MUFC), baseball, Marvel, and reading as many books as possible. Finding ways to combine all of these with ITAM & software licensing is always fun!

Connect with Rich on Twitter or LinkedIn.

One Comment

  1. J Senior says:

    Rich: completely agree that the name will cause a lot of confusion for a while – just as “Office 365” did at its time.

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