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Microsoft cuts the price of Azure and Office 365

Microsoft has cut the price of Windows Azure by 12%, and Office 365 by 20%, as competition in the cloud computing market increases

Microsoft has cut the price of Windows Azure by 12%, and Office 365 by 20%, as competition in the cloud computing market increases.

Writing on the Windows Azure blog, Steven Martin, general manager, Windows Azure, said: “Customers tell us that cost savings is only part of the story. While we are delighted to pass along savings, we are just as focused on improving the developer experience and adding new capabilities.”

The new pricing will mean a 24x7 Extra Small Compute instance with a 100MB SQL Azure DB costs less than $20 per month. 

Other changes include:

  • Windows Azure Storage pay-as-you-go pricing has been reduced by 12% ($0.14 to $0.125).
  • Six-month plans for Windows Azure Storage have been reduced across all tiers by up to 14%.
  • Windows Azure Extra Small Compute has been reduced by 50% ($.04 to .$02).

Although Microsoft hopes the price cut will lure users away from rival cloud services such as Google, Martin said Windows Azure would focus on enterprise services

“It’s much more appealing to developers when it comes with high availability, fault tolerance, self-management, elastic scale-out, on-premises connectivity, and a full service level agreement,” he said.

Microsoft is also cutting the price of its Office 365 product. The company claims it is passing on savings due to an uptake in customers.

“As we rapidly add customers, the cost to run Office 365 becomes more efficient. This is the beauty of the cloud, where we can deliver economies of scale through our worldwide datacentres and economies of skill with our engineers, administrators and support teams operating the service,” said Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice-president for Microsoft.

By running its datacentres more efficiently, Microsoft is passing on a 20% saving to Office 365 customers. However, the change only benefits new and renewing direct customers.

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