Microsoft ends support for Office 2010, bangs the Office 365 gong


Microsoft on Tuesday reminded customers that Office 2010 and Office 2016 for Mac have received their final security updates, as the suites have now dropped off the company’s support list.

And as Microsoft has done before, the Redmond, Wash. company exploited the end of support to pitch customers on changing to the subscription-based Office 365.

“We’ll no longer provide technical support, bug fixes, or security updates for these products, and organizations that continue to use them may face increased security risks and compliance issues over time,” Jared Spataro, an executive in the Microsoft 365 group, wrote in an Oct. 13 post to a company blog.

Office 2010, a set of Windows productivity applications — notably Word, Excel and PowerPoint — debuted in April 2010 and received Microsoft’s then-standard decade of support. Office 2016 for Mac, which was released in September 2015, was allotted only five years of support, the maximum for a Mac-based bundle.

Both are what Microsoft calls “perpetual” versions of its application suite, the term derived from the type of license the company sells customers. Buyers pay a one-time fee for the product, which is then licensed to operate on a specific PC or Mac for as long as the user wants, even after support has ended if he or she is willing to risk the lack of security patches.

Cue the choir, sing hosannas for subscriptions

Microsoft has released perpetual successors to Office 2010 — both Office 2016 and Office 2019 — and Office 2016 for Mac (Office 2019 for Mac). However, they received nothing more than a mention by Microsoft as possible replacements for the expiring suites.

Instead, the emphasis is on the Office 365 and Microsoft 365 subscription plans, especially the locally-installed applications, which formerly went by Office 365 ProPlus but were rebranded Microsoft 365 Apps in April.

In fact, Microsoft 365 Apps — again, realized via Office 365/Microsoft 365 subscriptions — are the company’s default. Microsoft’s position is that application software-by-subscription is the inevitable end game for all customers.

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.



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