Microsoft Office, or simply Office, is the former name of a family of client software, server software, and services developed by Microsoft. It was first announced by Bill Gates on August 1, 1988, at COMDEX in Las Vegas. Initially a marketing term for an office suite (bundled set of productivity applications), the first version of Office contained Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint. Over the years, Office applications have grown substantially closer with shared features such as a common spell checker, Object Linking and Embedding data integration and Visual Basic for Applications scripting language. Microsoft also positions Office as a development platform for line-of-business software under the Office Business Applications brand.
|Initial release||October 1, 1990|
|Written in||C++ (back-end)|
|Operating system||Microsoft Windows|
|Standard(s)||Office Open XML (ISO/IEC 29500)|
|Available in||102 languages|
|License||Trialware, volume licensing or SaaS|
|Initial release||April 19, 2000|
17.0 / October 2021
|Operating system||Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile, Windows Phone, iOS, iPadOS, Android, Chrome OS|
|Platform||Smartphones and Tablet computers|
|Initial release||August 1, 1989|
Microsoft Office 2021
|Written in||C++ (back-end), Objective-C (API/UI)|
Classic Mac OS (discontinued)
|Available in||16 languages|
|License||Proprietary commercial software (retail, volume licensing, SaaS)|
It contains a word processor (Word), a spreadsheet program (Excel) and a presentation program (PowerPoint), an email client (Outlook), a database management system (Access), and a desktop publishing app (Publisher).
Office is produced in several versions targeted towards different end-users and computing environments. The original, and most widely used version, is the desktop version, available for PCs running the Windows and macOS operating systems. Microsoft also maintains mobile apps for Android and iOS. Office on the web is a version of the software that runs within a web browser.
Since Office 2013, Microsoft has promoted Office 365 as the primary means of obtaining Microsoft Office: it allows the use of the software and other services on a subscription business model, and users receive feature updates to the software for the lifetime of the subscription, including new features and cloud computing integration that are not necessarily included in the "on-premises" releases of Office sold under conventional license terms. In 2017, revenue from Office 365 overtook conventional license sales. Microsoft also rebranded most of their standard Office 365 editions as "Microsoft 365" to reflect their inclusion of features and services beyond the core Microsoft Office suite.
In October 2022, Microsoft announced that it will phase out the Microsoft Office brand in favor of "Microsoft 365" by January 2023. The name will continue to be used for legacy product offerings.