All about the “Lifetime” or “Lifetime Subscription” Microsoft Office that many web sites are selling. Is it a legitimate, legal version of Office?
“Lifetime” Office isn’t a word that Microsoft uses to describe any Microsoft Office product and for good reasons we’ll explain. Lifetime Office is used by other sellers, usually ones selling very cheap and possibly illegally obtained Office licences.
Office Watch has talked about the ultra-cheap offers of Microsoft Office 365: Microsoft Office 365 ‘Lifetime’ plans are a lie
Aside from fake Microsoft 365 ‘lifetime’ offers, probably what’s being sold is Office 2021 or Office 2019 which are what Microsoft calls the “perpetual license” version of Office.
Office 2021 and Office 2019 are the recent single-payment versions of Microsoft Office. The software will run without a official end date, though in practice it’s more complicated.
“Perpetual Licence” is the way all MS Office software was sold in years past, before the modern ‘subscription’ Microsoft 365 arrived.
There are NO “Lifetime subscriptions” to Microsoft 365 plans.
Ignore “Lifetime”, look for the Office version
Because Office 2021/Office 2019 don’t have a time-limit, sellers have taken to calling them “Lifetime” to make them look like better value than a Microsoft 365 plan.
If you see a ‘Lifetime’ offer, ignore that word and look at what version of Microsoft Office is being sold.
- Office 2021 or Office 2019?
- For Windows or Mac?
- Which bundle? Professional, Professional Plus, Standard etc
- In other words, which apps are included like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook etc.
Why doesn’t Microsoft use the word “Lifetime”
All Microsoft software has an ‘end of support’ date. After that date there’s no more software or security bug fixes provided by Microsoft.
For Office 2021, end of support is 13 October 2026
Office 2019’s end of support is 14 October 2025
The Office 2021/2019 software will keep working after support ends but, over time, it’ll be an increasing security risk. A lot of successful criminal hacking takes advantage of older, out of support, Office software.
The support end date is why Microsoft doesn’t call any Office software a Lifetime license.
“Lifetime” is an unauthorized marketing term used by sellers who are selling Office licences of dubious legitimacy.