Microsoft Drops Office 2019 From Home Use Program As It Pushes Lucrative Office 365 Subscriptions

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Microsoft is killing off a way that many people were able to score deeply discounted versions of Office for home use. Office 2019 is available to purchase with a perpetual license (meaning you purchase it once, and it's yours forever), but Microsoft is removing this option from its Home Use Program (HUP).

HUP allows business and educational institutions that purchase licensed software from Microsoft to offer that same software to employees at [often times] incredibly low prices. For example, my wife is a teacher, and her school district allows her to purchase Office Professional Plus 2019 for around $15 for use on her computer at home.

Microsoft has now updated its HUP FAQ to state. "Office Professional Plus 2019 and Office Home and Business 2019 are no longer available as Home Use Program offers."

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That means that employees will no longer take advantage of these "one and done" perpetually licensed copies of Office Professional Plus 2019 and Office Home and Business 2019. Instead, they will be offered discounted version of Office 365, which is Microsoft's subscription-based version of the productivity suite that must be renewed on an annual basis. 

It makes excellent business sense for Microsoft, because instead of offering a one-time discounted rate to eligible HUP participants, it can get that same (or in many cases more) revenue on an annual basis. And Microsoft has made an effort to bash Office 2019 in the past as it promotes Office 365, as you can see in the videos below:

Microsoft says that with this change, it will offer HUP participants a 30 percent discount on Office 365 Home and Office 365 Personal. That means that customers will be paying $48.99 and $69.99 respectively -- per year -- to use the software.

This change to the HUP doesn't mean that perpetually licensed versions of Office 2019 are going away completely. You can still purchase them, although even HUP participants will have to pay the full retail price like everyone else.