Understand the SkyDrive offering

Written by Julien Peigne, ZAG Technical Services

From Consumers to Businesses

Microsoft SkyDrive has been in the consumer market for a few years, as a competitor of Dropbox and more recently Google Drive. With the release of SharePoint 2013, Microsoft introduced SkyDrive Pro - a replacement of the My Site features along with the Newsfeed. This article provides an overview of the global SkyDrive offering to better understand the brand and the products.


SkyDrive debuted in 2005 when Microsoft acquired FolderShare, a file synchronization technology. This product became Windows Live Mesh a few years later. In the meantime, the Windows Live team was working on an online storage product named Windows Live SkyDrive. Microsoft SkyDrive is the merging of these two technologies.

The Windows Live brand disappeared with the release of Windows 8 in an effort of simplification. But the goal of the new Windows services remains the same: extend the Windows user experience to the cloud, as part of the Software + Services strategy.

What is SkyDrive?

SkyDrive keeps your files synchronized and up-to-date on all your devices. It includes:

  • A service, with personal storage and the Office Web Apps (the web versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote).
  • Apps, to access and synchronize your files.

SkyDrive started as a consumer product and is now also available for businesses with SkyDrive Pro. Note that SkyDrive and SkyDrive Pro are two different products and technologies. They both carry the SkyDrive brand because they share the same goal: provide personal storage and keep your files in sync.






  SkyDrive Pro Part of SharePoint Server 2013 and SharePoint Online

  Default Storage 

  7 GB

  SharePoint Server 2013: Managed by admins SharePoint Online: 7 GB per user

  Get More Storage

  Yes, up to 100GB

  SharePoint Server 2013: managed by admins SharePoint Online: admins can't buy more storage for now

  Office Web Apps



Web Portal



Desktop Synchronization

  Yes, with the SkyDrive desktop app for Windows

  Yes, with SkyDrive Pro 2013 (part of the new Office, also coming this summer as a standalone client)

Other Apps

  Windows 8/RT

Windows Phone





 Windows 8/RT (coming this summer)

Windows Phone (with the Office hub)

iOS (coming this summer)

In a word

Whether you are at home, at work, or on the go, SkyDrive keeps your personal and business files synchronized. Please refer to skydrive.com, office.com, or contact us for more information.


Understand the new Office offering

  Written by Julien Peigne, ZAG Technical Services

Overview of the subscription business model

Microsoft officially launched the new Office on January 29th, unveiling two new offerings with Office 365 University and Office 365 Home Premium. Office 365 has been in the business market for a few years, and the introduction of these new suites for consumers brings the subscription model to everyone. To better understand the differences between the brand, the apps, and the suites, let's have a deep look at the new Office business model.

Brand and products

Office is the master brand that includes all of the productivity products from Microsoft. As a brand, it is timeless and does not indicate a version. That is why Microsoft refers to "the new Office".

However, products do have versions and can be suites or apps:

  • Main suites are Office Home & Student 2013, Office Home & Business 2013, Office Professional 2013, Office for Mac Home & Business 2011, Office 365

Small Business, Office 365 Enterprise, etc.

  • Apps are Access 2013, Excel 2013, Lync 2013, OneNote 2013, Outlook 2013, PowerPoint 2013, Project 2013, Publisher 2013, Visio 2013, and Word 2013.

Suites are available in two different ways:

  • Perpetual: Pay one time for a specific product (e.g. Office Professional 2013). This does not include services or upgrade to the next version.
  • Subscription: Pay every month for software, services, and future updates (e.g. Office 365 Enterprise).

With the new Office, Microsoft introduces the subscription model (Office 365) for everyone - home, school, and business. And you can always buy Office as you used to do before if you prefer.

New subscription plans

Office 365 is a user-based subscription that combines the full version of the Office apps with communication and collaboration services. This is the exact implementation of the Software + Services strategy that Microsoft unveiled a few years ago.

The new Office 365 plans available are:



  Office 365 University


  Office 365 Home Premium


  Office 365 Small Business

  Office 365 Small Business Premium  

   Businesses with 1 to 10 users

  Office 365 Midsize Business

   Businesses with 11 to 250 users

  Office 365 Enterprise

  Office 365 Education

  Office 365 Government

   Businesses, schools, and government with 250+ users

Note that the services provided with Office 365 vary depending of the usage:


    Communication and








  Exchange Online

  Lync Online

  SharePoint Online 

And the Office Web Apps - the browser-based versions of the Office apps - are available with all these services.

In a word

Whether you are at home, at school, or at the office, Office 365 brings your productivity software and services together, accessible anywhere, anytime. For more information, please visit office.com  or contact us.

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