As Microsoft tries to update everyone to the latest secure operating system, Office 2019 will have one big system requirement: Windows 10. Office 2019, the next perpetual version of Office due in the second half of this year 2018 (historically mid-September), is being developed for businesses that are not quite that ready for the cloud connectivity of Office 365.
The Windows 10 requirement is new, and it specifies any currently supported version that is updated on a semi-annual basis with new feature updates—basically Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro. “Software that is more than a decade old, and hasn’t benefited from this innovation, is difficult to secure and inherently less productive,” Microsoft said. “As the pace of change accelerates, it has become imperative to move our software to a more modern cadence.”
The question is, how will higher education respond? Many colleges and universities are already using Office 365 and the updates occur twice a year in March and September. The March 13, 2018 Spring update of Office 365 is being used as the code basis of Office 2019. Most colleges will probably not upgrade to Office 2019 until the summer of 2019, due to scheduling system wide updates. Personally I think by the summer of 2019, that most colleges will be using Windows 10, but not all.
And for my Office 365 users, Office 365 will no longer be supported on older versions of Windows after January 4, 2020 such as Windows 7 or Windows 8. So what about staying with Office 2016? Not really an option because Microsoft has announced that Microsoft Office 2016 will be barred from connecting to Microsoft's cloud-based services, including hosted email (Exchange) and online storage (OneDrive) after Oct. 13, 2020.
I can see why Microsoft wants everyone to head to the latest Windows version. Recent news stories have highlighted security breaches such as WannaCry ransomware, which truly target older versions of Windows. So stay tuned! We are already working on the next round of amazing books and SAM products for Office 2019/365. In the next few posts, I will highlight some of the exciting new features of Office 2019! Worth the upgrade I assure you.
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