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Microsoft claims Office 2013 licensing is no different than Office 2010

Says Office 2010 licences also cannot be transferred
Wed Feb 20 2013, 12:12
Microsoft Office 2013 Steve Ballmer

SOFTWARE COBBLER Microsoft has tried to clear up Microsoft Office 2013 licence transportability questions by saying the terms and conditions are no different than in the licence for Microsoft Office 2010.

Earlier in the week Microsoft generated some controversy after it emerged that the firm's latest Microsoft Office 2013 productivity software suite does not allow users to transfer licences to other computers. Now Microsoft has tried to smooth things over by claiming that the licensing terms of Microsoft Office 2013 are no different than those of Microsoft Office 2010.

Jevon Fark, a member of Microsoft's Office team said, "It is important to note that Office 2013 suites have consistent rights and restrictions regarding transferability as the equivalent Office 2010 PKC [product key card], which was chosen by a majority of Office 2010 customers worldwide."

Using a table that one commenter described as "disingenuous at best", the firm showed that Microsoft Office 2010 PKC versions have the same installation and transfer rights as PKC versions of Microsoft Office 2013.

Fark said that an exception can be granted if the software is on a machine that has been replaced under warranty. He added, "We think this new lineup offers unmatched choice and value for students, families and everyone in between." However it seems those who read Fark's post weren't impressed with the explanation.

One person responding to Fark's post said, "Nice spin, Microsoft. Because your absurd 'one licence per computer' was in effect for Office 2010, that makes it perfectly acceptable for Office 2013? Why don't you just come right out and say it: 'We want you to SUBSCRIBE to Office, and every other option we offer makes you want to subscribe.'" Others questioned what Fark meant by exceptions for computers that have been replaced under warranty.

Navigating Microsoft's licensing maze is nothing new, however for those users worried about whether they are buying or merely subscribing to Microsoft Office 2013, Libreoffice is a free alternative, and the GNU Lesser General Public License is far less restrictive than anything Microsoft offers. µ


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