Microsoft bows to pressure: Office 2013 is no longer tied to a single computer

Microsoft Office 2013 logo

With the release of Office 2013 Microsoft took the opportunity to review and update the software license agreement in a way that upset just about everyone. The new license tied a retail copy of Office 2013 to a single computer forever. If your machine died, so did the copy of Office installed on it and you’d have to purchase a new license to continue using it.

The new terms clearly stirred up a lot of anger, and Microsoft has now responded to that by updating the license agreement to relax the restriction. Microsoft has stated that in response to “customer feedback,” you can now transfer Office 2013 from one PC to another. The change is effective immediately for anyone using a copy of Office Home and Student, Home and Business, Professional, or the individual Office applications.

The change effectively sees Office revert back to the license restrictions used for Office 2010. You can transfer Office 2013 to a new machine once every 90 days, or more frequently if your hardware fails. You can also transfer ownership to a machine owned by someone else. In all cases, you can’t continue to use it on the previous machine.

This decision will stop the complaints, but you have to wonder why Microsoft ever decided to do this in the first place. Hardware fails, and asking individuals to re-purchase software due to a hardware fault is ridiculous. Lets hope Microsoft has learned from this and doesn’t implement the same restriction again in future for Office or any other applications for that matter.

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