March 07, 2013, 6:30 PM — A couple of weeks ago, Microsoft informed the world that if you buy Office 2013 you could only install it on one computer--ever. So if your computer broke down or you replaced it, you couldn't transfer the license to your new system. That was a terrible licensing decision, which made many Office customers angry. Thankfully, Microsoft changed the transferability terms based on all the uproar.
In its blog post announcing the news, Microsoft now says you can transfer Office 2013 to another computer you own, with some caveats:
You may transfer the software to another computer that belongs to you, but not more than one time every 90 days (except due to hardware failure, in which case you may transfer sooner). If you transfer the software to another computer, that other computer becomes the "licensed computer." You may also transfer the software (together with the license) to a computer owned by someone else if a) you are the first licensed user of the software and b) the new user agrees to the terms of this agreement before the transfer. Any time you transfer the software to a new computer, you must remove the software from the prior computer and you may not retain any copies.
The previous licensing terms were apparently a push to get more adoption for Office 365, the subscription-based version of Office. Turns out people just want to be able to buy software and reinstall it on a new computer when they want to. Who knew? Anyway, it's a good move by Microsoft to bring back this essential capability for Office 2013.
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