You will rent Office 365 someday. Oh yes, you will.

I wasn’t really into this Office 365 thing – I want all my applications and documents secure and local, where I can use them offline or online, why would I want yet another subscription service? I had just purchased Office Pro 2013 and was happily downloading it to install when… wait… it’s immediately ready to use? I just downloaded the installer! What’s going on?

3651 Ooh, tricksy Microsoft. I’m suddenly using the streaming version of Word 2013 while in the background, the application is being downloaded. WTF? Someone at Microsoft thought that up? Does it work? Yes. Really, really well. It’s smooth, only took about 2 minutes to go from hitting ‘download’ to using it, and has all the features I’m used to. How CONVENIENT. How tablet-y. How… 2013?

I would’ve stopped the download to go buy O365 if I could’ve – I can use that on 5 computers instead of the one I’m installing 2013 on, and you know I’ve needed office on multiple machines at home before. Office 2013/365 can also save straight to your Skydrive (pumped up by 20gb with purchase of O365), and even makes it look like a local drive. More convenience. This isn’t your basic student Office, it’s everything, from Access to Publisher to Powerpoint. $9 per month. Oh, you want the downloadable version on your one PC? That’ll be $399.99. Yes, I thought so.

It’s almost ironic that the 128gb iPad entered the market today, when you have just experienced how fast and easy it is to stream Office. Today, too, we heard a chorus of bloggers writing about the lack of ‘true’ space on the Surface RT and Pro (which I agree with, actually), most without mention of how we now stream audio, video and even now applications like Office. FYI, Office is still installed locally with O365 Home Premium, but if you jump onto another computer without Office, you can use a streaming version called Office On Demand (Windows 7 and 8) with your Microsoft login. I’d use the On Demand feature exclusively on a wifi-connected tablet, I think, especially after experiencing it during this install. 3653

Don’t worry, I’ve read all about how Office 365 is dead on arrival, too late, and too expensive, and Google Apps! That all goes away when you get that ridiculously complex spreadsheet from your boss or professor and you have to get it done tonight, and your free program just can’t… quite… open it correctly. Maybe not today, or next month, but you will subscribe to Office 365, and you will love it. You just can’t help it.