Last night, I was casually browsing the Microsoft Store app. Being a subscriber of Office 365, there was no reason for me click on Microsoft productivity card but I did and I was pleasantly surprised to see a 50% discount campaign running for Microsoft 365.
Apparently, this discount does not appear on webpage (perhaps I did not test thoroughly), it can be seen in the Microsoft Store in Windows. I have no idea how long the discount campaign will run. Do act fast before it is gone.
They are offering Microsoft 365 Personal at SG$54 and Microsoft 365 Family at $74 for the first year. Further more, $103 annually there after for the Family plan is about the same price as corporate rate, if not cheaper. This means that the first year is twice as beneficial for me. Saying so, even without this discount, there are 5 reasons why the Family plan is value for money.
Without considering the apps that comes with the subscription, just using the storage alone is worth the money spent. It is possibly the best deal in town.
Reason #1 - 6TB (1TB per person x 6 persons) Storage
Just considering the storage space alone is already worth the money spent. Lets do some mathematics. A single 6TB external drive costs around SG$220 while a 1TB external drive costs around SG$80. This means that if 6 persons buy 1TB each it would cost a total of $480. Then assuming that the lifespan for external drive is around 3 years before risk of failure increases dramatically, the cost per year would be around $160. Obviously, Microsoft 365 Family is value for money. It is also more value for money compared to Google One where 2TB cost around SGD$140 per year per person.
Reason #2 - Online storage available all the time across all devices globally
There is no need to carry the drive along with you all the time, because the files are available online. If there is a fear of loss of network connection, a copy can always be synced to the phone, tablet or PC. I used this feature to safekeep travel documents as well as to store photos taken when traveling abroad. These photos will become increasing precious over time. For those of us who runs NAS 24x7 at home, there is a huge reduction in electric bills when it is decommission. There is no need to run a VPN and storage server at home to transfer or access these files & photos.
Reason #3 - Backup
Over the years, I have lost count of the number of people who asked me to help them recover files & photos from their drives that had failed. When files are stored in OneDrive, there is no worries of such failures, Microsoft backup the files. It is transparent to users. There is no need to worry about external drives failure resulting in loss of precious photos and memories. There is no need to set up relatively expensive RAID in the NAS at home.
Reason #4 - Security
Microsoft is more concern about their platform's security than most of us. Their business depends on it. Therefore, they will do their utmost to protect their own business and reputation. The risk of misplacing the external drive where anyone who picked it up could access all the information therein is eliminated.
Reason #5 - Multi factor authentication (MFA)
Who amongst us has an external drive with MFA? While this type of secure external drives are available in the market, they are also much more costly. Microsoft provides MFA for our account. In any case, all of us should turn on MFA for all our apps regardless (eg. WhatsApp, Telegram, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc). On top of providing MFA to get access to the account, Microsoft also provided a personal vault where added layer of authentication is required to access those sensitive files. Confidential documents such as passports, ID, etc can be and should be kept in the vault.
Needless to say, the decision was simple for me. I have already paid for this discounted offer.
Existing subscriber who re-subscribed at a better deal