Microsoft uses Xbox Live as a carrot for Office 365

Microsoft uses Xbox Live as a carrot for Office 365

Summary: Microsoft's latest back-to-school promotion for Office 365 uses Xbox Live Gold as an enticement for Office 365 Home Premium and Office 365 University subscriptions.


In what's likely to be the first of many similar examples to come, Microsoft is using a consumer product to try to entice users to buy a business one with its new Xbox Live-Office 365 deal.


Advertised as a back-to-school offer, the new promotion allows users buying an Office 365 Home Premium annual subscription or Office 365 Unviersity subscription to get 12 months of Xbox Live Gold for free.

The deal is not currently available in the U.S. (I've asked Microsoft officials if and when it will be, but have yet to hear back.)

Update: It turns out the Xbox Live-Office 365 deal is also available in the U.S. and Microsoft is updating its other sites to make this clear.

The deal is offered in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hon Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and the U.K.

The deal runs from July 18, 2013 to September 28, 2013. Customers have until October 31 to redeem the offer at

For $100 per year,  an annual Office 365 Home Premium subscription allows users to install Office client apps on up to five PCs and/or Macs in total. Users who subscribe rather than buy the single-use Office 2013 complement outright, also get synchronization capabilities by signing in through, and are slated to receive regular feature updates. Office 365 University is a four-year subscription, which allows users to install Office client apps on up to two PCs and/or Macs in total.

Topics: Collaboration, Microsoft


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Microsoft uses Xbox Live as a carrot for Office 365

    Sure sounds like Office 365 is in trouble with Windows crowd when you have to give 12 monthe of XBox live Gold to try and keep them . Everyone must be switching over to Libre Office suite and saving plenty of money.
    Over and Out
    • Or

      Or just a cash cow which better be milked as milked as much as possible.
      • Or

        The milk is running out. That's why the cow needs more cash.
    • LOL keep dreaming

      They're just trying to cross market. Maybe Libre should come with a free playstation 4. It might actually become successful that way.
  • rediculous that I have to pay

    for Xbox live in the first place. Especially now that they have integrated nu-ads in the tiles now.
    • So true.

    • If your a gameboy addict

      Then you'll pay to see their sh!tty ads.
  • Is O365 Home or O365 University really a "business" product?

    I have O365 Home at home because it allows me to have Office on all of my machines. I don't use any of them for "business" purposes.
  • lame

    I'm not eligible for this promo because I already bought Office 365 a month ago. Thanks for nothing, Microsoft.
    • Same here.

      But, it's a nice offer for those that are thinking about one or both products.
      Sam Wagner
  • I wouldnt mind getting 12 months of XBOX live

    with or without O365 home edition.. nothing wrong with either products on their own let alone combined.
  • Microsoft uses Xbox Live as a carrot for Office 365

    Just when you thought some of the Microsoft deals couldn't get any better they go and do something like this. The deal will help you with work and play.