Microsoft Project has been around for many years and is a key tool for many organizations to plan, track and resource projects. Microsoft also has an enterprise class Portfolio management product – Project Server and now Project Online – that allows project managers to collaborate on multiple projects and for portfolio managers to see the big picture across the organization and to review portfolios of multiple projects.
Project Online is Project Server running in the cloud completely integrated into Office 365. It costs $33.90 / user / month on an annual subscription.
In recent years, enterprise portfolio management platforms have had competition from lighter weight, cloud based project management and collaboration systems. Offerings such as Basecamp, Zoho Projects, and WorkZone provide simpler, cheaper and 100% cloud based solutions for teams managing and collaborating on projects.
In order to compete with these offerings, Microsoft has just announced a new Project Lite offering that will be $7 / user / month. It will be available May 1, 2014 and will be less focused on portfolio management and more on project teams requiring a light weight project management solution.