Office 2013 vs Office 365 Home Premium

Office 2013 and Office 365 box shots

Software publishers are constantly trying to figure out new and interesting ways to leave your bank account emptier and Microsoft has figured out a rather tempting way of doing so with Office 2013.

Office 365 Home Premium is a yearly subscription product based around Microsoft's productivity platform, but it's been fluffed up with some tantalising goodies to seal the deal.

Let's take a look at Microsoft's attempt to turn a tri-yearly purchase into an annual dip into your back pocket.

Office 2013 standalone pricing

Before we look at the subscription offering, let's dig into the pricing for your average, everyday Office 2013 suite.

Microsoft is selling each of the programs in Office 2013 for $149 each, with the exception of OneNote, which comes in at the more affordable price of $89.

If you want to buy multiple programs, fear not — your other half won't shoot you when they see you've blown $983 buying each piece of software separately.

Instead, they'll probably give you a slight beating for buying the Office & Home Business edition bundle, which costs just $299. It doesn't include Publisher or Access, but it does include everything else, and most users won't notice the absence of the two geekier programs.

Office 2013 Office & Home Business edition can be installed on a single PC.

Poor students living on two-minute noodles and the occasional can of dog food once again get a sweet deal, with the Office Home & Student 2013 suite selling for a meagre $169.

It includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote, but sadly doesn't include the self-discipline most students need to study (instead of chugging yard glasses at the uni bar).

This is fantastic value, so hunt down that long lost cousin you haven't spoken to in a couple of years to get a copy of their student card.

Once again, this pack only buys you a single install.

Finally, we have the Office Professional 2013 suite, which goes for the princely sum of $599.

All seven Office applications are included — Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher and Access.

They're not your plain-Jane versions, though, as certain applications have more advanced business features.

Despite the higher pricing, this is also limited to a single install.

These three options cater to the old school shoppers, who prefer to know they own something outright, rather than leasing it off the supplier.

Office 365 Home Premium offers a very different alternative.

Keep on paying

Rather than pay a one-off fee for your chosen bundle, Office 365 Home Premium is a subscription plan; in essence, you're leasing the Office suite, not to mention a few other goodies, for a year.

It costs $119 per annum, which sounds a little high considering you can buy the Office 2013 suite for just $180 more.

However, the real benefit here is in the number of installations. Instead of just a single install, the Office 365 Home Premium bundle gives you a whopping five installs.

Even better, it's for both Windows and Mac, for those homes inhabited by both designer snobs and nerdy tech-heads.

This is a godsend for families — no longer will you have to listen to annoying teenagers (aka your children) bickering over who gets to use the one PC with Word on it because every member of the family will have a full working copy of the Office 2013 suite.

They'll also have access to both Publisher and Access, which aren't included in the standalone version of Office 2013.

If you have the full five PCs to make use of the five installs, the cost per PC is just $23.80 per year.

There's also a monthly option of $12 per month for those who live from one pay cheque to the next, but it adds up to the slightly higher price of $144 per annum.