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Should you order the disk or download?
on January 14, 2012
There has been enough written about using Microsoft's office apps versus Apple's on the iMac. I'll not rehash that here. I need every feature I can get my hands on so I checked Amazon today for the best price on Office 2011 for the Mac. Given that I only have one Mac in the house I was happy to see I could save a few bucks on the 1 license/1 mac version.
Then I saw the download version available and wondered if I should do that or wait the two days for the disks. The item description said it could take from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 5 hours to download. One of the reviewers said the download didn't work. I thought I'd take the risk anyway given I have all the latest hardware and software, fast cable internet connection, a little bit of tech knowledge, trust Amazon to take care of its customers, and am increasingly enjoying the new world of online availability of everything without having to store disks.
So here's my take: It took me 8 minutes to download the software and 4 minutes to install it. Then I had to get back on Amazon for the software key, as you need to quit Safari to finish the install. Upon starting the software it checked for updates and I needed to install service pack 1 which took another couple of minutes. All in all the process was completely error free and under 20 minutes. It doesn't get any better than this! Highly recommend!
The only reason I might reconsider the digital download is if I was unsure about my internet or hardware/software setup. But if that was the case, then I wouldn't be looking at Office 2011 anyway, as it might not work well on my setup anyway. The thing people need to remember is that upgrading necessitates upgrading -- the best way to keep your old hardware is to keep your old software, but when you want the latest and greatest, be prepared for the costs for all the latest to go with it.