In August, Microsoft announced the launch of its latest product: Windows 365. This cloud-based version of their operating system lets SMBs and other users fully customize their PC experience in the cloud.

Microsoft dove into its cloud software offerings with Office 365, which saw increasing traction with SMBs that looked to leverage the benefits of the productivity software they’ve likely used for years without the hassle of setting up hosted services.

The new foray into Microsoft Windows 365 takes that journey a step further. Windows 365 is a fully cloud-based service that lets you run your business in the cloud for a regular monthly fee. This includes running all IT and associated devices and Office 365 Business Premium software plus essential services like managing against cyberattacks or ensuring software is updated to the latest versions.

The benefits for an SMB of being fully cloud-based are that employees can work virtually from anywhere while still leveraging the benefits of the entire Microsoft suite of services and products. On top of that, it can help an SMB lower costs by eliminating the need for significant infrastructure purchases.

Here are some features that SMBs should watch when it comes to Windows 365:

Secure data storage. Windows 365 includes Microsoft OneDrive, a tool that allows your organization to ensure their data is kept secure while allowing for increased collaboration across the organization. SMBs can leverage the benefits of sharing documents in real-time while also knowing they are fully backed up and leveraging the benefits of Microsoft’s heavy investment in security. Windows 365 includes 1TB of data storage as part of the standard package.

Easy licensing. From a tactical perspective, having a single subscription license fee for Windows and Office makes it easier to manage and build productivity into IT costs. Each employee also receives all features and software products by default for a single price.

Familiar apps. While the Windows 365 and Office 365 services are relatively new, the overall solutions are some of the most standard products today, such as Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Excel. This means that SMBs can leverage the benefits of the cloud without teaching their staff how to use new products.

Benefits for virtual teams. Cloud-based solutions like Windows 365 are ideal for remote or dispersed teams. OneDrive, Teams, and other collaboration tools built into the Windows 365 suite ensure that SMBs can collaborate easily and store the results of their work in an easy-to-access way, even if they are not in a centralized office space.

As SMBs evaluate the cost, ease of business, productivity, and other benefits of moving to the cloud, Windows 365 could be one new offering to help. As with any tool, though, they should carefully evaluate the solution for their business and decide if these benefits are the right ones for them.

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