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The company has announced that all editions of Office 2013 are now transferable.

Following a number of weeks of negative press around Microsoft Corporation's (NASDAQ:MSFT) decision to prevent some editions of Office 2013 from being transferable to other PCs, the company has since backed down and announced that all editions of Office 2013 are now transferable.

Matt Fisher, business development director, License Dashboard, comments:

Microsoft should be praised for listening to its customers. It is good to see that Microsoft has had a change of heart and reverted back to the same licensing rules it applied to Office 2010.

This episode has shown both the value of making a noise when things aren’t quite 'right' and also that Microsoft is willing to listen. This is a win/win scenario, as the customers get what they want and Microsoft is painted in a positive light for being flexible.

Note however, that copies of Office 2013 purchased to-date will still have the original licensing rules stated in-product, but Microsoft has confirmed the licensing revision is effective immediately – so this is a great example of where the usage rights in effect don’t quite match those ‘printed’ on the product.

There are a number of lessons to learn here:

1. Customer pressure can work – Microsoft has reacted to customer complaints to rectify what end users perceived as unfair licensing practices.

2. Microsoft is getting better at listening to customers – it’s a small victory, but we should praise Microsoft for reacting positively to customer pressure.

3. Licensing is complex. Effectively, we’ve got two licensing changes that it’s reasonable to expect most people in IT are unaware of. This demonstrates just how complex licensing can be and how professional advice and the right technologies are required to really get a handle on managing entitlements.