Microsoft’s Introducing a New Way to Update Office, Current Branch for Business
Earlier today, Microsoft announced that Office 2016 will arrive on September 22nd and to help corporate customers keep their machines updated but not overburden them with updates, the company has announced Current Branch for Business.
This new option for updating Office makes it easier for corporations to update their machines with only three updates being delivered per year. It’s important to know that if you do opt to use the three updates per year method for maintaining your installs, monthly security patches will still be available if a highly vulnerable exploit is discovered.
If this model sounds familiar, this is a similar path to what Microsoft is doing for Windows 10 Enterprise customers to deliver consistent feature updates on a timed interval so IT admins don’t have to scrape each update clean of features to only deliver security patches.
Say Goodbye to Traditional PC Lifecycle Management
Traditional IT tools, including Microsoft SCCM, Ghost Solution Suite, and KACE, often require considerable custom configurations by T3 technicians (an expensive and often elusive IT resource) to enable management of a hybrid onsite + remote workforce. In many cases, even with the best resources, organizations are finding that these on-premise tools simply cannot support remote endpoints consistently and reliably due to infrastructure limitations.
The first Current Branch for Business build is set to be released in February 2016, which the company says is essentially the same feature seat as the September 22nd release but with four additional months of security updates.
The Current Branch for Business feature is only available to Office 365 ProPlus users and will be the default setting for ProPlus subscribers, those with Office 365 Home and Personal, you will be restricted to the monthly updates.
Microsoft has provided detailed documentation about the new update process for Office that you can find here.