Several core Microsoft services will reach their ‘end of life’ stage during 2020. The end of support for Windows 7 and Server 2008 in January will impact a huge number of users. However, there are other significant changes scheduled for later in the year. From 13th October 2020, Microsoft will only support Office 365 connectivity from Office 365 ProPlus subscription users or Office perpetual users with a version that is still in mainstream support. This means Microsoft will no longer support Office 2013 user connections to commercial Office 365 services. Their official recommendation is that Office 2013 (or older) users migrate to Office 365 ProPlus or upgrade to Office 2019.
This change will impact a lot of SME customers who still use Office perpetual licenses. Some users still prefer the payment terms of an upfront capital expenditure over a monthly subscription per user fee model. A perpetual license of Office refers to the installation of Office on a single PC – you pay once and in theory you can use that license forever on that PC. However, Microsoft is now moving towards a subscription model for cloud based services. Office 365 refers to Micorsoft’s subscription services. In this case, users do not buy the product outright; instead, they pay a monthly or annual per user fee to use the services.
While Microsoft won’t block users of Office 2013 and Office 2010 from using Office 365 services, some features will no longer work ie Outlook, OneDrive for Business and Skype for Business. Users will begin to experience both performance and reliability issues. Security risks will develop and of course, they may find that they are out of compliance with industry specific or cyber security regulatory standards by using unsupported systems.
Microsoft had originally planned for this change to impact Office 2016 users or older. But, as our previous blog highlights, they released a statement in September 2018, extending this support for 3 years to 2023. This change means Office 2016 users connection to Office 365 will not change until 2023. Support for both Office 2016 and Office 2019 connections to Office 365 will end in October 2023.
If you need advice on upgrading your systems, one of our Technical Consultants can guide you through the options and help you work out which best suits the needs of your business. Why don’t you contact us today to start the ball rolling.
RedMosquito provides IT Support and IT Security services to SMEs in Glasgow, Edinburgh and throughout Scotland.