Update: How to Get Microsoft Office for Free in 2020

On January 1, 2020, I published Off Topic: How to Get Microsoft Office for Free in 2020. The instructions for obtaining free copies of Microsoft’s Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneDrive, Outlook, Calendar and Skype apps have changed a bit since January 1 so I have deleted the original article. In its place, I would suggest you read Microsoft Office is now Microsoft 365. Here’s how you could get it for free by Alison DeNisco Rayome and available on the CNET web site at https://www.cnet.com/how-to/microsoft-office-is-now-microsoft-365-heres-how-you-could-get-it-for-free/.

Please keep in mind that the free versions are mostly the same as the older versions that require payment but there are a few differences. Quoting the article by Alison DeNisco Rayome in the CNET web site:

“…the functionality of these apps is limited: They only run through your web browser, and you can’t use them if you aren’t online. There are also fewer features than the full Office 365 versions.

“However, there are still a number of benefits, including the ability to share links to your work and collaborate in real time, similar to G Suite tools. If you’re looking for basic versions of each of these apps, the free version should work well for you.”


I am one of the 14.5 million people in rural areas of the United States who still lack access to to fixed broadband internet at threshold speeds and Office 365 is not the best option here. I was able to purchase Microsoft Office Home Student 2019 for a discounted price when I purchased my new laptop. I don’t have to be online to use it and there will be no yearly fee.


Or you could use free, open source software like LibreOffice.


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