Microsoft's 'Ultimate Steal' promotion for college and university students is available in the USA and other countries for a price that's so low it almost qualifies as stealing.
'Ultimate Steal' offers have been done in other countries as well as the USA in the past. This time the offer lasts a lot longer - until the end of December 2010.
The price is about as good as you'd hope - Office 2007 Ultimate edition officially sells for $679.95 but can be bought for around $400. The 'Ultimate Steal' price is just $59.95 - yes, you read that right.
There are similarly spectacular deals on some other Microsoft products - more on that later. All the software is sold as a standard 'Perpetual licence' (the trial of these offers included an annual subscription option but that's now been dropped).
Who can get it
These low prices are aimed at students which is defined by Microsoft as follows:
1. .edu: Individual must possess a valid e-mail address at a U.S. educational institution which contains the domain suffix .edu; OR
Pre-Approved School List: Enrolled in a U.S. educational institution included on the pre-approved school list; OR
Submission of school enrollment: Submit verifiable school enrollment via the validation process; AND
2. Individual must be a student at a U.S. educational institution and must be actively enrolled in at least 0.5 course credit and be able to provide proof of enrollment upon request.
Not stated in that definition is an important exception: Teachers and students attending K-12 schools are not eligible.
The best and easiest way to qualify is if your school issues students with an .edu email address - otherwise the qualification process is a little messy but worth it for the savings.
Doubtless some people will be tempted to cheat the system. Keep in mind that Microsoft may contact you after purchase to verify that you are a student - if you can't provide documentation you'll be liable to pay Microsoft the rest of the full price of the software (ie over $600 more).
If your school doesn't issue an .edu address and isn't on the pre-approved school list either - it might be worth asking the school administrators to try getting themselves onto that school list.
How to purchase
The entire purchase process is done online. Once you've applied and qualified starting here you'll be sent an email with a link to purchase. After purchase you'll get download details. The product keys are also advised via email and on a web page.
The Office 2007 download is several Gigabytes so make sure you have a broadband connection available.
While the download is probably available for some time after purchase we strongly suggest you carefully save both the download files (ie burn a DVD) and the accompanying licence key.
The licence key is the important detail to save because you can always get an Office 2007 installation source from somewhere but the key is vital to getting Office 2007 working. Make sure you keep any email with the product key and don't delete it.
You'll be given the option to have software disks posted to you for an extra fee.
If you are eligible you can buy one licence only of each product:
Office 2007 Ultimate edition - $59.95
- Access(R) 2007
- Accounting Express 2008 Excel(R) 2007
- InfoPath(R) 2007
- Groove(R) 2007
- OneNote(R) 2007
- Outlook(R) 2007 with Business Contact Manager
- PowerPoint(R) 2007
- Publisher 2007
- Word 2007
Office Language Pack $9.95 per pack (limit of one pack)
Note: the English language release of Office 2007 already includes proofing tools for French and Spanish.
- Brazilian Portuguese
- Chinese Hong Kong
- Chinese Simplified
- Chinese Traditional
- Hungarian Slovak
Visio Professional 2007 - $55.95
Windows Vista Ultimate Upgrade $64.95
Note - this is an upgrade, you must have Windows XP or Vista already installed on the computer.
Similar deals are available in some other countries:
with Belgium promised as 'coming soon'.
The offer is similarly generous in each country but the qualification rules are similarly tough.
To access these offers go to the US version then choose your country from the Country/Region list on top right.
Article posted: Monday, 08 December 2008
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