How Can You Differentiate Between Office 365 and Microsoft 365?

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Last Updated on January 9, 2021

Microsoft has become something of a staple when it comes to office use in large and small scale businesses and companies alike. The appropriate Microsoft subscription ensures that all of the computers and devices on your network are able to access all of the applications that are required by your employees or colleagues. When talking about Microsoft subscriptions, you may see people refer to it as Office 365 or Microsoft 365. A lot of people tend to use these terms interchangeably when, in fact, there actually exists a significant difference between the two.


Office 365 is the package that you and I are well familiar with. It comprises of various applications that can be used for learning and professional purposes, including the likes of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, etc. Not only that, but this package also includes certain collaborative platforms such as OneDrive and SharePoint. Office 365 can be purchased online or from a retail store and then downloaded using Once you are at ms office setup, all you need to do is enter your product key to avail your subscription and start using the applications.

Office 365 does not have much to offer besides these tools and applications. It does not offer extensive engagement and strategizing or collaborative tools, neither does it offer enterprise security or mobility. It is also the cheaper package, starting from $5 per month for the cheapest subscription, which is Business Essentials, and going as high as $12.50 per month with Business Premium. You can find more information regarding Office setup at


As opposed to Office 365, Microsoft 365 is actually a broader umbrella term that encompasses Office 365 and a number of other items or Microsoft products. Introduced in 2017, the Microsoft 365 package includes Windows 10, Enterprise Mobility and Security, and, as mentioned previously, Office 365. This package exists in two different forms, depending on your needs- the Microsoft 365 Business and the Microsoft 365 Enterprise. Where the former has been designed to accommodate small to medium sized businesses harboring less than 300 users, the latter is the ideal solution for larger, enterprise type organizations that have bulkier requirements such as strong security features as well as a collaborative sharing platform for the network. Recently, another iteration, the Microsoft 365 Education has also been announced, focused on providing educating systems and students with an appropriate and sufficient learning platform. You will not be using to download and set up your Microsoft 365 subscription.


Whether you purchase Office 365 or Microsoft 365 depends on one thing only, and those are your requirements out of the package. Before making the final decision, ask yourself what functionality and features your business needs to extract from this package. If you require extensive security features and management tools, then the Microsoft 365 is the better option. On the other hand, if you simply need access to the applications of Office 365 without the advanced features, then stick with the cheaper alternative in Office 365 by purchasing a subscription and going to ms office setup to download it.