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Microsoft Office 365: Is there a plan and pricepoint that's right for you?

With Office 365, Microsoft is planning to offer a number of different plans at a variety of price points, hoping to entice enterprises, SMBs and academia to choose Microsoft over Google Apps and other competitors.

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1 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

When Microsoft launches Office 365 in mid-2011, there will be a lot of different SKUs and price points available to users. The P Plan is aimed at SMB customers, and is priced at $72 per user per year. This is Microsoft's main shot across the Google Apps bow , and is aimed at price-sensitive users.

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2 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

For customers who need Active Directory sync, archiving, Blackberry Enterprise Services support -- and who have 50 PCs (or soon will), Office 365 for Enterprises is the most applicable Office 365 SKU.

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3 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

There are two types of Office 365 for Enterprise plans: Plan K (for "kiosk" workers) and Plan E (for information workers). Plan K doesn't include messaging and collaboration features or functionality.

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4 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

There are three different Plan K offers. Hosted Exchange Online only is available for $24 per user per year. Hosted Exchange plus Hosted SharePoint (Plan K1) is $36 per user per year. And Hosted Exchange, Hosted SharePoint and Office Web Apps access (via SharePoint) (Plan K2) is $120 per user per year.

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5 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

There are four different Plan E options, ranging in price from $120 per user per year, to $324 per user per year. These are known as E1, E2, E3, and E4. Both the E3 and E4 options include for each user a copy of Office Professional Plus -- Microsoft's highest-end Office 2010 SKU -- to be used on client PCs.

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6 of 6 Mary Jo Foley/ZDNet

Office 365 for Education is Microsoft's counteroffer to Google Apps for Education. Like the other Office 365 SKUs, it includes an option to purchase the Office 2010 Professional Plus SKU for those who want to run it locally on users' PCs.

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