Over the last few months Iâ€™ve found myself in conversation with various people who want to install Microsoft Office on their PC but are put off by the high price of a a full retail copy. What many people donâ€™t seem to realise is that there is a Home and Student Edition for Microsoft Office 2007 that is very reasonably priced and itâ€™s valid for up to 3 PCs in one household. Suggested retail price in the US is $149.99 but, here in the UK, Microsoft Office 2007 Home and Student Edition can be purchased for as little as Â£53.93 (Microsoft Office for Mac 2008 Home and Student Edition is slightly more expensive at Â£78.45).
Because Microsoft Office 2007 Home and Student Edition is intended for consumers in general (i.e. itâ€™s not just an educational discount) there is no need for purchasers to prove academic status. It just needs to be for home/educational use (i.e. not for a small business!). You donâ€™t get the full Office suite, but you get the important bits â€“ Word, Excel and PowerPoint (no Outlook, but Windows Mail, Windows Contacts and Windows Calendar are all perfectly capable clients and are built into Windows Vista). Office:Mac users also get Entourage (minus Exchange Server support) and Messenger (although Messenger:Mac is a free download).
If someone in your household is in education, students (school, college and University) and their family members can get even better deals including something called the Ultimate Steal which allows the purchase of Office Ultimate 2007 for Â£38.95 (which includes Access, Excel, Groove, Infopath, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher and Word), Office Visio Professional 2007 for Â£36.95, Office Language Packs for Â£9.95 or a Windows Vista Ultimate Upgrade for Â£40.95 but for these prices you do need to be enrolled on a college course with an academic e-mail address and meet certain requirements regarding hours of study (sadly my 3 hours a week in evening classes wonâ€™t count!).
It seems that buying a copy of Office doesnâ€™t need to break the bank after all.