I discuss several aspects of strings as unified theories. After recalling the difficulties of the simplest supersymmetric grand unification schemes I emphasize the distinct features of string unification. An important role in constraining the effective low energy physics from strings is played by $duality$ symmetries. The discussed topics include the unification of coupling constants (computation of $\sin ^2\theta _W$ and $\alpha _s$ at the weak scale), supersymmetry breaking through gaugino condensation, and properties of the induced SUSY-breaking soft terms. I remark that departures from universality in the soft terms are (in contrast to the minimal SUSY model) generically expected.