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October 2, 2014

Microsoft restructures Office 365 plans for SMBs

"This new lineup reflects the feedback we’ve received from SMB customers," says MS.

By Ben Sullivan

Microsoft, fresh from announcing Windows 10, has restructured its Office 365 plans for SMBs.

Office 365 Business will now bag you the suite of Office applications, including Microsoft Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher and OneDrive for Business cloud storage for $8.25 per user per month.

Office 365 Business Essentials brings Microsoft’s core cloud services for SMBs. Office 365 Business Premium will get your SMB everything from both the Office 365 Business and Business Essentials plans for $12.50 per user per month.

Microsoft defines an SMB as a business with 1 to 250 employees. The firm said on its Office blog: "The new plans will replace our current plans for SMBs over time. If your business is currently on one of the previous SMB plans (Small Business, Small Business Premium or Midsize Business), you should visit your Message Center in the Office 365 admin center for more details on how the new plans impact you, or talk to your Office 365 provider. The current Office 365 Enterprise plans remain the same."

In September, Microsoft released Delve, a social network-style platform for Microsoft Office 365.

The aim of Delve is to show users relevant information and connections from across their work lives, and it displays information based on work habits such as what they are working on and who they are working for.

Julia White, general manager of Office 365 Technical Product Management, said: "With Delve, information finds you versus you having to find information."

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Delve extracts information about you based on insights through Office Graph, which claims to use machine learning to map the relationships between users, content, and activity on Office 365. According to Microsoft, Delve is the first of many new ‘insight’ experiences it plans to release for Office.

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