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A Complete Guide to Download Microsoft Office 365 free [2024]

March 12, 2024 9.5K views

From beginners to advancers, from frontline workers to 8th graders, Microsoft Office 365 understands the needs of its users and develops suites for different systems and user groups. Whether you're using a PC or a Mac, looking for a personal or business solution, or even searching for a free alternative, Microsoft Office 365 has a suite that fits your needs. In this article, we'll explore the various versions of Microsoft Office 365, and even how to download for free for the full version, as well as free alternative options to consider. 

Part 1: Full Versions of Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft 365

#1 Microsoft Office Personal and Family Version

With Microsoft Office 365 Personal and Family versions, users can access to essential applications such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. It also enables you to create, edit, and collaborate on documents with ease. With the Personal version, you can enjoy the benefits of Office 365 on a single device, while the Family version allows up to six users to share the subscription across multiple devices. Stay organized, communicate efficiently, and unlock your full potential with Microsoft Office 365.

Microsoft Office 365

Personal

Family

Features

  • Allows 5 devices to be used simultaneously.

  • Allows 5 devices to be used simultaneously for each user.

  • Additional functions are available with the Family Safety mobile app.

Price

$8 per month or $79.99 annually

$11 per month or $109.00 annually

Suitable

Individuals

Family or small groups

#2 Microsoft Office 365 Business Version

Microsoft Office 365 Business is a powerful suite of productivity tools designed specifically for businesses. It includes popular applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more. It also allows teams to collaborate, communicate, and work efficiently. With flexible plans and cloud-based storage, Office 365 Business helps businesses of all sizes streamline their operations and enhance productivity.

Microsoft 365 Business

Basic

Standard

Premium

Apps for Business

Features

  • Business Class email

  • Chat, call, and meet with up to 300 attendees

  • Standard Security

Everything in Business Basic, plus:

  • Premium features are available in desktop versions of Microsoft 365 apps

  • Webinars can be easily hosted.

  • Tools for registering attendees and reporting

Everything in Business Standard, plus:

  • Advanced security

  • Access and data control

  • Cyberthreat protection

  • Premium features are available in desktop versions of Microsoft 365 apps

  • Standard Security

  • Phone and web support available at all times.

Price

$6 per user/month

$12.50 per user/month

$22 per user/month

$8.25 per user/month

Suitable

Small to medium-sized businesses that require essential productivity tools and collaboration features

Small to medium-sized businesses that require additional tools for customer management and online presence

Small to medium-sized businesses that require advanced security, device management, and virtualization capabilities

Small to medium-sized businesses that need the basic Office applications for productivity and collaboration


#3 Microsoft Office 365 Education Version

Microsoft Office 365 Education Version is a comprehensive suite of productivity tools tailored for educational institutions and students. It offers applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more, enabling students and educators to create, collaborate, and communicate effectively. With features like cloud storage and online collaboration, Office 365 Education Version enhances learning experiences and promotes efficient workflows in educational settings.

Microsoft 365 Education

A1

A3

A5

Features

  • Microsoft 365 apps are only available on the web and on mobile devices.

  • 1:1 and group online audio and video calls

  • 50 GB Mailbox

Everything in Education A1, plus:

  • Premium features are available in desktop versions of Microsoft 365 apps.

  • Analytics

  • Advanced Security

  • 100 GB Mailbox

Everything in Education A3, plus:

  • Licensing

  • Cyber Security

  • Management Tools

  • Audio Conferencing

Price

Free

Starts at $2.50 per user per month

Starts at $6 per user per month

Suitable

All academic institutions

All academic institutions

All academic institutions

#4 Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise Version

Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise Version is a robust suite of productivity tools designed for large organizations. It includes applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more, providing powerful tools for communication, collaboration, and data management. With advanced security features, cloud storage, and enterprise-level support, Office 365 Enterprise Version empowers businesses to enhance productivity, streamline workflows, and ensure data security and compliance.

Microsoft 365 Enterprise

E3

E5

F3

Features

  • Premium features are available in desktop versions of Microsoft 365 apps.

  • Record meetings

  • 100 GB Mailbox

  • Azure Information Protection Plan 1

Everything in E3, plus:

  • Premium features are available in desktop versions of Microsoft 365 apps.

  • Webinars

  • Audio Conferencing

  • Azure Information Protection Plan 2

  • Microsoft 365 apps are only available on the web and on mobile devices.

  • Record meetings

  • Azure Information Protection Plan 1

Price

$32 per user/month

$57 per user/month

$10 per user/month

Suitable

Mid-sized to large organizations that require advanced security, compliance, and collaboration features

Large organizations that require advanced security, compliance, and collaboration features

Frontline workers and other employees who do not require full Office desktop applications

Part 2: Office 365 Download for PC & Mac

While Microsoft offers a version for Office 365 download free, however many users prefer the premium version, which comes with additional features and benefits.

  • How to Download Office 365 for PC and Mac

1. Go to the Microsoft website and sign in with your Microsoft office account.

Microsoft 365 Sign-in

2. Choose the Office 365 product you want to download and select the appropriate version (32-bit or 64-bit) for your PC.

3. Click on the "Buy and Download" button, and then complete the purchase process by entering your payment information.

Microsoft 365 Payment

4. Once the purchase is complete, you will receive an email with a product key and a download link for Microsoft office 365 download.

Microsoft Download MacOS

Note
  • Office 365 is compatible with both Windows and Mac operating systems, ensuring that users can access their favorite Office applications regardless of their chosen platform.

  • Users gain access to the latest versions of Microsoft Office 365 applications, ensuring that they have access to the most up-to-date features, security patches, and bug fixes.

  • With Office 365, users no longer need to worry about manually updating their Office applications. 

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  • How to Install and Activate Office 365 for PC:

1. Locate the office 365 download installer and double-click to start the installation process.

2. Follow the on-screen instructions and agree to the terms and conditions to proceed.

Microsoft License Agreement

Microsoft License Agreement

3. Choose the installation location and select the necessary options according to your preferences.

Microsoft 365 Installation

Microsoft 365 Installation

4. Wait for the installation to complete, which may take a few minutes.:

5. Open any Office application such as Word or Excel.

6. Click on the "Activate" button and enter the product key provided in the email.

7. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the activation process.

Microsoft 365 Activation

Microsoft 365 Activation

8. Once activated, you can start using the paid version of Microsoft Office on your PC.

  • How to Install and Activate Microsoft 365 for Mac:

1. Once you have downloaded Microsoft 365, locate the downloaded file and double-click on it to begin the installation process.

2. Follow the prompts to complete the installation process.

Microsoft 365 Installation on MacOs

Microsoft 365 Installation on MacOs

3. Once the installation is complete, open any Microsoft Office application (such as Word or Excel).

4. You will be prompted to activate Microsoft 365. Click on the "Activate" button.

Microsoft 365 plans

Microsoft 365 plans


5. Follow the prompts to enter your Microsoft account details and complete the activation process.

6. That's it! You should now be able to use Microsoft 365 on your Mac.

Part 3: How to Sign Up for Free Microsoft Office 365 Student Version

Signing up for Microsoft Office 365 Student Version ensures that students have access to a comprehensive suite of productivity tools, and enables them to make or edit excel in their academic pursuits and work collaboratively with their peers. Microsoft has made it incredibly easy for students to download and sign up for a free Office 365 student subscription. Follow these simple steps to get started:

1. Go to the official Office 365 Education website.

2. Enter your valid school email address to login.

Microsoft 365 student sign-in

Microsoft 365 student sign-in


3. Microsoft will verify your email address and tell you whether your school is eligible for the program. If your institution is eligible, access will be granted immediately.

If your institution is ineligible for the free Microsoft Office 365 education subscription, you can sign up for a verification process that may take up to 30 days. Note that the subscription is only available to current students or staff members of eligible institutions. Graduating or losing affiliation with the institution will result in losing eligibility for the free subscription.
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Part 4: How to Upgrade Office 365 to the Latest Version

To upgrade to the latest version of Microsoft Office 365, your options will vary depending on the type of Office product you currently have. If your current version is a one-time purchase, non-subscription version of Office like Office Home & Business, you will need to buy the latest version. You can purchase a Microsoft Office 365 subscription like Microsoft Office 365 Personal or Microsoft Office 365 Family, or the newest one-time purchase version. When you're ready to install your new product, make sure your computer meets the system requirements for the newest version of Office.

If you already have a Microsoft office 365 subscription, you can upgrade by following these steps:

  • Activate Office your Microsoft 365 with your product key.

  • Choose your language, and download Office 365 64 bit, or any other option

  • Install other apps if needed.

  • Set up mobile devices if needed.

  • Check for and apply Office or Microsoft 365 updates.

  • Upgrade to the latest version.

Microsoft 365 Upgrade

Microsoft 365 Upgrade

To upgrade your Office installation, follow the steps outlined in the "Download and install or reinstall Office on a PC or Mac" guide. After installation, your Office 365 should update automatically or prompt you to apply updates. It's vital to note that support has ended for older versions like Office 2013, Office 2010, Office 2016 for Mac, and Office 2019 for Mac. Ensure you upgrade to the latest version, Office 365 download free full version for Windows 10 64-bit, for ongoing support and access to new features. If you encounter errors, troubleshoot and uninstall your current Office version. Additionally, Mac users may need to remove older Office licenses after installing the latest version.

Part 5: Why People Want to Download Office 365 for Free

  1. Trial Period: Microsoft offers a free trial period for Office 365, allowing users to test out the suite of applications and experience its features before committing to a paid subscription.

  2. Limited Usage: Some individuals may only need to use Office applications occasionally or for basic tasks. Downloading Office 365 for free allows them to access the applications without incurring any cost.

  3. Cost Constraints: Not everyone may have the financial means to purchase a paid subscription to Office 365. Downloading it for free enables them to access essential productivity tools without any upfront cost.

  4. Educational Purposes: Students and teachers often seek free access to Office 365 for educational purposes. Microsoft offers Office 365 Education, which provides free access to eligible students and educators, allowing them to use the suite of applications for learning and teaching.

  5. Familiarity: Many individuals are accustomed to using Microsoft Office applications and prefer to continue using them for personal or professional purposes. Downloading Office 365 for free allows them to continue using familiar tools without any additional expense.

Part 6: Best Alternative to Microsoft Office 365 - WPS Office

WPS Office

WPS Office is a comprehensive office software that is available for free. It was founded in 1989 by Kingsoft Office Software and has amassed over 500 million users globally. According to Trustpilot, it has received a score of 4.8 out of 5 based on 880 reviews. It is a fully-featured office suite that offers a variety of tools and applications for word processing, spreadsheet analysis, and presentation creation. It is a cross-platform software that supports Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.

WPS Office is compatible to many systems

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WPS Office- Free All-in-One Office Suite
  • Use Word, Excel, and PPT for FREE, No Ads.

  • Edit PDF files with the powerful PDF toolkit.

  • Microsoft-like interface. Easy to learn. 100% Compatibility.

  • Boost your productivity with WPS's abundant free Word, Excel, PPT, and CV templates.

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Algirdas Jasaitis

FAQ of Downloading Office 365

Q1: How to check Office 365 version 32-bit or 64-bit command line?

To determine whether your Office 365 version is 32-bit or 64-bit, open Command Prompt and run

"cscript.exe%SystemDrive%Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice16OSPP.VBS /dstatus".

This will show details about your Office installation, including the bit version.

Q2: How do I download Office 365 offline installer?

Go to the Microsoft Office website and select the offline installer option to download the Office 365 offline installer. This will download the required files to your computer, allowing you to install Office 365 without an online connection.

Q3: Can I download Office 365 for free?

Microsoft offers a free Office 365 Education package for qualifying institutions. For individuals, limited free options include online versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and a one-month trial of the full Office 365 suite is also available.

Q4: Can you upgrade from 32-bit Office to 64-bit?

Yes, you can update from a 32-bit to a 64-bit version of Office. This, however, necessitates deleting the 32-bit version before installing the 64-bit version.

Summary

Microsoft Office 365 offers different versions and suites to meet the needs of users, from personal to business use. There are versions for individuals, families, businesses, educational institutions' students, and large organizations. Users can download Office 365 for PC and Mac, either for free or by purchasing a premium version. Students can sign up for a free Office 365 student version. Upgrading to the latest version is possible, and there are reasons why some people prefer to download Office 365 for free. For those seeking an free alternative, WPS Office is a comprehensive free office software available on multiple platforms, as it's 100% compatible with any file formats of Microsoft Office.


15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.