Microsoft 365 – which license do I choose?

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Umbrellar Connect

Having trouble deciding which Microsoft 365 bundle to choose for your business needs? You're not alone - at least, not anymore! Umbrellar's Microsoft Licensing Lead, Sasha Vovchenko, takes us through a simplified overview of Microsoft 365 bundles to help make your decision easier.

The question of Microsoft licensing can be fairly complex at the best of times. Fortunately, Umbrellar’s new Microsoft Licensing Lead, Sasha Vovchenko, has the answers to all your licensing questions. Like to receive simple licensing updates like this direct to your inbox every fortnight?


A simple overview

Many customers struggle to choose the most cost-effective Microsoft plan that is right for their needs. Here’s the quick and simplified overview of M365 for Business v M365 for Enterprise:

Customers with less than 300 seats

Do not need Windows/Azure AD Premium and require only Web/Mobile versions of Office apps:  M365 Business Basic $9.10 (for annual commit, paid monthly)

Do not need Windows/Azure AD Premium but require Desktop/Web/Mobile versions of Office apps: M365 Business Standard $18.90 (for annual commit, paid monthly)

Need Windows Pro, Desktop/Web/Mobile versions of Office 365 Business, Azure AD, Defender for Business (antivirus/antimalware/network/cloud protection), Single Sign-On, Intune, Windows Autopilot: M365 Business Premium $33.30 (for annual commit, paid monthly)

Note: For M365 Business Standard and Premium install Office apps on up to five PCs or Macs, five tablets, and five mobile devices. Office 365 Business can’t be used on Terminal Server.

Any number of seats

Need Windows Enterprise, Intune, Windows Autopilot, Desktop/Web/Mobile versions of Office ProPlus, 100 GB Mailbox, Unlimited OneDrive storage, Defender for Endpoint (anti-spam, anti-malware, etc): M365 E3 $57.50 (for annual commit, paid monthly)

Need all the above plus advanced email security functionality (Defender for Cloud Apps, Endpoint, Identity, and Office 365), analytics, and phone systems: M365 E5 $86.20 (for annual commit, paid monthly).

M365 E5 is commonly used by the Government and Healthcare services or any customers managing very sensitive, confidential data.

Note: For M365 E3/E5 install Office apps on up to five PCs or Macs, five tablets, and five mobile devices.


In reality, you can have a mix of Business and E3/E5 bundles. It all depends on your needs and budget.

If you’ve found this article to be helpful and would like useful information on Microsoft licensing delivered directly to your inbox, subscribe below. Designed to be short, sharp and to the point, these bi-weekly updates will only deliver the facts you need to sort out your Microsoft licensing and give you a direct line to Umbrellar’s Microsoft Licensing Lead Sasha Vovchenko.



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