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Q&A: How do I license Office RT for commercial use?

Q&A: How do I license Office RT for commercial use?

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By Ron Grattopp ronaldg-001_thumb2_thumb_thumb1_thum….So in my previous blog post I gave you the rest of the story around Windows RT which includes Office Home & Student 2013 RT (Office RT), but what I didn’t call out specifically, that you need to know, is that Office RT is NOT designed or licensed out-of-the-box for “commercial, non-profit, or revenue-generating activities”.   Now the Introducing Office Home & Student 2013 RT Preview FAQ addresses this issue (see below):

[from FAQ] Can I use Office Home & Student 2013 RT for work or business?
As sold, Office Home & Student 2013 RT Preview and the final edition are not designed for commercial, nonprofit, or revenue-generating activities. However, organizations who purchase commercial use rights or have a commercial license to Office 2013 suites can use Office Home & Student 2013 RT for commercial, nonprofit, or revenue-generating activities.

Sounds pretty straight-forward, BUT, as usual, when you try to get into the practical details it’s not as simple or obvious as it would seem, thus the question I got from one of my LAR partners which lead to this post.  

As usual, many answers can be found in the October 2012 PUR (if you have the incentive and fortitude <grin> to delve into that tome, which is over 120 pages currently).  For starters and efficiency, here’s a screenshot of the Office Home & Student 2013 RT commercial use rights section in the PUR (page 7 of 123); be advised there is an Addtional Terms section on page 19, as well as another section around subscription licensing (USL) rights on page 88 that also apply to Office RT.

image

So here’s some drill-down on the options for licensing Office RT for commercial use:
Option 1) There will be a standalone commercial license that someone can purchase for Office RT and this is documented within the current PUR -- see callout above, plus item 2 in the Additional Terms section which states: “This license modifies your right to use the software under a separately acquired Office Home & Student 2013 RT license, by waiving the prohibition against commercial use of the software” (unfortunately I have no further info at this time around the availability of that stand-alone license).
Option 2) The purchase of any Office VL SKU (Standard 2013 or ProPlus 2013) would confer "commercial" use rights to the Office RT running on a companion RT device per callout above plus item 3 in Additional Terms (page 19) which states: “If you acquire Office Home & Student 2013 RT commercial use rights under an Office Professional Plus or Office Standard license, you may permit the primary user of the Licensed Device to use a separately licensed copy of Office Home & Student 2013 RT as provided here.”  As a side note that was another question I got around this issue, I’ve confirmed that non-VL Office editions (e.g. any OEM or FPP [retail box] product edition), even though they might be qualified for commercial use, DO NOT extend those commercial use rights to any secondary/companion devices.  You should note that Office 2013 FPP editions no longer allow for multiple installs like some Office 2010 FPP product editions did.  And, thirdly
Option 3) The purchase of an Office user subscription license (e.g. Office ProPlus), also per callout above plus item 1 in the online licensing section (page 88) which states: “Your user SL modifies your right to use the software under a separately acquired Office Home &Student 2013 RT license, by waiving the prohibition against commercial use of the software.”

So there you have the various ways to legally use Office RT in a business (commercial, non-profit, or revenue-generating) environment.
Hope this helps,
Cheers,
Ron

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