Microsoft used last week's launch of Office 2003 to offer US users incentives to upgrade of up to 22% off the price of a three-year maintenance contract under the Software Assurance scheme.
Gartner analyst Jonathan Mein said the US discounts were the biggest percentage rebates ever offered by Microsoft, and said that enterprises of every size should consider buying them.
No announcement was made at the UK launch, but Microsoft has told Computer Weekly that it will offer discounts here for six months from 1 December.
Microsoft licensing manager Mark Buckley would not give details, but said that when the offer begins, users could expect "considerable savings".
Although Office 2003 offers improvements on the 2000 edition in terms of XML support and Infopath e-forms software, users gave the launch a lukewarm reception. Last week, some users told Computer Weekly they could not justify the cost of upgrading at the list price.