The first draft of this blog post was written in the cloud, in a handy version of MS Word that goes by the name of Word Online and follows us around from computer to computer, hanging above us in the webosphere. When you log in to Microsoft’s (relatively) new Office 365, you have access to applications from the Office suite such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The full range depends on from which platform you access Office 365, but whether it be Windows, Mac, iPhone or Android systems, you’ll find the apps to be satisfyingly complete and without drastically reduced functionality. As well as accessing Office online, you can also download Office for Windows, Mac, iPhone and Android, giving you the option of using Office online or downloading it for use on your device or computer.
Download software or access Office online
Every student and member of staff at the University of Sussex can now download and use Office for free, and along with that comes the added benefit of being able to sign in to Office 365 from any web browser and create, edit and save documents. (You’ll also be pleased to know that I’ve just learned through experience and if you accidentally close your browser following a badly placed click of the mouse, the autosave is up to scratch and the document will be there waiting for you, even if you hadn’t initially saved it.)
Receive 1TB online storage for free
Our students and staff are allocated a massive 1 terabyte of cloud space through OneDrive, Office 365’s integrated storage facility. Documents can be uploaded from your computer or saved directly from Office apps such as Word Online; they can then be shared widely, including with contacts who do not have the same access to Office 365. Incidentally, it’s not just MS Office files that OneDrive supports – you can also store pictures, music and videos which you can also open and view/hear/watch from where it is without downloading it. You can also link Office 365 to your Dropbox account which, for example, makes it easy to open and edit Word documents that you already have stored online.
Visit the IT Services Office 365 page to find out how you can download the Office 2013 and access it online here: sussex.ac.uk/its/freeoffice
We’d love to hear about your experiences using Office 365 and how you are making it work for your personal and academic needs, so do leave comments below.