Microsoft has announced a new one-time purchase version of Microsoft Office that will debut later in 2021 for Windows and macOS.
The company said it plans to launch both a variant of Microsoft Office’s Long-term Service Channel and a version designed for consumers and small businesses. Like the previous version of Office 2019, both versions are designed for those who do not want to pay monthly for the Microsoft 365 cloud-based service.
Microsoft said the LTSC version will include new updates like Dark Mode and accessibility improvements, as well as features like Dynamic Arrays and XLOOKUP in Excel. It will likely include those features in Office 2021 for consumers as well, but Microsoft is holding back on adding details until the release date approaches. The company said it does not plan to change the one-time purchase cost.
Also, there is a new change in the support window for Office 2021 LSTC. The window is extended up to five years, instead of the seven years it usually provides. The cost is also increasing by 10%.
Office 2021 LTSC will be available as a preview version in April, but the consumer version will not. Microsoft is considering a release in the second half of LTSC, although it is unclear if it plans the same for Office 2021.