Difference between Office 2021 Professional Plus and Microsoft 365 Pro Plus

Microsoft Office 2021 Professional Plus and Microsoft 365 Pro Plus are two distinct products offered by Microsoft, each with its own features and benefits. Here’s a comparison to help you understand the differences:

Microsoft Office 2021 Professional Plus

One-Time Purchase:

Office 2021 Professional Plus is available as a one-time purchase. Once you buy it, you own it forever and do not have to pay a subscription fee.

Installed Locally:

It includes traditional desktop applications that are installed on your computer. These applications do not require an internet connection to function after installation.

Included Applications:

The suite typically includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, Access, and Skype for Business.


Only includes security updates and bug fixes. Feature updates are not provided; new features are introduced in new versions of Office.


Licensed per device. Once you install it on a computer, it is tied to that specific machine.

Microsoft 365 Pro Plus

  1. Subscription-Based:Microsoft 365 Pro Plus (now known as Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise) is available through a subscription model with monthly or yearly payments.

  2. Cloud Integration:Includes cloud services and apps that are tightly integrated with OneDrive for file storage and sharing, enabling real-time collaboration and access from any device with an internet connection.

  3. Included Applications:Includes all the applications found in Office 2021 Professional Plus, along with additional online services like Teams, Exchange, SharePoint, and OneDrive.

  4. Updates:Subscribers receive regular feature updates in addition to security updates and bug fixes. New features are rolled out continuously.

  5. Licensing:Licensed per user. Each user can install the Office apps on multiple devices (PCs, Macs, tablets, and phones).


  • Cost: Office 2021 Professional Plus has a one-time cost, whereas Microsoft 365 Pro Plus requires ongoing subscription fees.

  • Updates: Microsoft 365 Pro Plus offers continuous feature updates, while Office 2021 Professional Plus only receives security updates.

  • Licensing: Office 2021 is licensed per device; Microsoft 365 is licensed per user and allows multiple device installations.

  • Cloud Services: Microsoft 365 Pro Plus includes additional cloud services and collaboration tools that Office 2021 does not.

Choosing between the two depends on your specific needs and preferences. If you prefer a one-time purchase and do not require the latest features or cloud services, Office 2021 might be suitable. If you want ongoing updates, cloud integration, and the ability to use Office on multiple devices, Microsoft 365 Pro Plus is the better choice.

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