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Microsoft Office 365 for Education Launches in New Zealand

28 June 2012

Microsoft Office 365 for Education Launches in New Zealand

Students and educators set to benefit from cloud-based desktop suite and collaboration tools

Microsoft New Zealand has announced the availability of Office 365 for Education, allowing students and educators to take advantage of cloud-based communications and collaboration tools at no cost.

Office 365 for Education is a cloud-based suite that includes the familiar Microsoft Office desktop applications, as well as Microsoft Exchange Online, Microsoft SharePoint Online and Microsoft Lync Online.

The solution provides educators with powerful tools to create anytime, anywhere learning opportunities across multiple devices in addition to email, calendars, Microsoft Office Web Apps, video and online meetings. There are also advanced document creation features for curriculum planning and student projects.

“The cloud and online learning are key trends in the transformation of how we are learn and teach. Office 365 for Education delivers an all inclusive and collaborative platform that will change the game,” says Evan Blackman, Education Sector Manager for Microsoft New Zealand.

“As schools face ever-tightening budgets and the pressure to innovate, we are offering enterprise quality technology for free that is set to modernise teaching practices and help students prepare for the jobs of tomorrow.”

After just one year, Office 365 is on track to be one of the fastest growing products in Microsoft’s history. Icebreaker, Child Cancer Foundation, Au Pair Link and Plunket are some of the businesses in New Zealand that have moved to this cloud-based solution in the past 12 months. Office 365 for Education is being launched as part of the one year anniversary, with education institutions around the world taking up the offer.

The University of Otago originally migrated thousands of student emails accounts to Office 365 in time to start the 2012 academic year, and Mike Harte, Director of Information Technology Services at University of Otago, says Office 365 for Education is now a key part of the campus experience.

“We now have a world-class email and calendaring solution for our students. Office 365 for Education fits in with our ‘anywhere, anytime, any device’ strategy, enabling students to access services on the go, wherever they are.”

Office 365 for Education allows schools to teach from virtually anywhere, reach more students, teach software skills and provide enterprise-class tools that reduce IT costs.

Benefits of Office 365 for Education include:

Students can engage in ad-hoc instant messaging or video chats to collaborate on class projects in real time, regardless of where they are working. They can create documents with Office Web Apps that provide the same features as the desktop version of Microsoft Office, share class notes by synchronising OneNote notebooks and create digital portfolios

Teachers can create curriculum, record lectures and publish them on online class sites in the cloud where students are able to view, open, produce, edit and share their homework. Office 365 provides new ways to extend classroom teaching time and distance learning, tutor students online and whiteboard ideas

Educational institutions and parents will get peace of mind knowing students’ content and personal data are protected and won’t be scanned for advertising purposes, thanks to a rich set of privacy, security and protection capabilities

School IT departments can save money and free up more critical time by counting on Microsoft to manage routine tasks such as applying server updates and software upgrades. With the influx of digital content, data center demands and lessened and with 25GB mailboxes, people won’t be forced to purge files

Education institutions currently using the Microsoft Live@edu platform will be upgraded to Office 365 throughout 2012. Customers can sign up for a 30-day trial now. More about Office 365 for education is available at http://www.microsoft.com/education/office365.

About Microsoft in Education
At Microsoft, we are deeply committed to working with governments, communities, schools and educators to use the power of information technology to deliver technology, services and programs that provide anytime, anywhere learning for all. For more information: http://www.microsoft.com/education.

About Microsoft
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

ENDS

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