Microsoft Office 2016 Suites, SKUs, Packages, and Pricing for Windows 10

Check out the lineup for this version of Office on desktop, mobile, and web

Microsoft PowerPoint 2016 Preview
Microsoft PowerPoint 2016 Preview. (c) Courtesy of Microsoft

Looking at Office 2016 packages and price points necessarily includes talking about Windows 10 pricing as well.

This is because some of the new versions of Office will be included for free with certain Windows 10 packages. For many Windows users, upgrading to Windows 10 may also be free for the first year. More premium versions of Office and Windows, however, will come with an additional price tag.

So, here is the simplest I could make this fairly complex topic. After all, we are talking about a bunch of different upcoming versions of Office, with different delivery methods (on device versus cloud-based, which means it requires an internet connection and a monthly or yearly account), on a host of different desktop and mobile devices.

In other words, please keep in mind that it is still early so we all still have a bunch of questions. But I hope this is a helpful early summary.

The Overview

Windows 10 users will be able to choose among the following tiers or SKUs: Home, Mobile, Education, Pro, Enterprise, and Mobile Enterprise. 

We do not yet know any pricing estimates for Office 2016 itself, but since Windows 10 is part of the Office 2016 landscape, here is some information on what we know about that, in the interim.

Windows 10 SKUs (or Packages and Pricing Tiers)

Here is a bit more detail I've summarized based on ZDNet's recent description of estimates for each of these brackets. In that article, Mary Jo Foley explains this about existing Windows customers:

"Microsoft is making Windows 10 available for free for the first year to consumers with Windows 7 Service Pack 1 and Windows 8.1 as of July 29, 2015. This is a limited time promotion that expires on July 29, 2016. Once the promotion ends, Microsoft will start charging Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users to upgrade to Windows 10."

Note: As you review the following list, you may also be interested in How to Preview Microsoft's Universal Office Apps for Windows 10, or the desktop Office 2016 preview links at the end of the article.

  • Windows 10 Home (Estimated Retail Price of $99): A desktop version for most consumers. Depending on your device's screen size (10.1 inches or smaller), you should have free access to the new touch-focused Universal Office Apps. You should also see: Cortana, new face- or fingerprint-recognition for login, and the Edge internet browser. 
  • Windows 10 Mobile (No Estimate Yet): A mobile version for most consumers. Depending on your device's screen size (between 3 and 7.99 inches), you should have free access to the new touch-focused Universal Office Apps and more. 
  • Windows 10 Education (No Estimate Yet): A version for students, teachers, administrators, and other employees of approved academic institutions. More detail about volume licensing and more to come. 
  • Windows 10 Pro (Estimated Retail Price of $199): A desktop and mobile version for consumers and professionals. This version allows you to also access Windows Update for Business.
  • Windows 10 Enterprise (No Estimate Yet): A desktop version for businesses interested in volume licensing.
  • Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise (No Estimate Yet): A mobile version for businesses interested in volume licensing. 

For even more detail, please check out: Microsoft goes public with its list of planned Windows 10 editions.

When I do learn about additional pricing estimates or other details, I will update this page for further comparison. Until then, this hopefully helps you further piece together where the next version of Office is headed.