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Microsoft price changes to come from October

The vendor is taking steps to remove some of the complexity in its pricing and make it easier for customers to get an idea of cost regardless of whether they are buying on-prem or in the cloud

Microsoft's partners have got the summer to get used to the idea that price changes are coming in the autumn with the vendor announcing that there will be 'price adjustments for on-premises and cloud products' from the start of October.

The software giant has positioned the changes, outlined in a blog post, as a chance to make life easier for partners and customers looking to make digital transformation moves.

"Microsoft will be making a series of changes across our program and product portfolio to provide unique offers that support customer digital transformation, improve the buying and selling experience, and make it easier to do business with Microsoft," stated the vendor.

"On October 1, 2018, we will adjust pricing for our licensing programs and make price adjustments to on-premises and cloud products. These changes will highlight the benefits of our pricing for a cloud-first world, help us move from program-centric to a customer-centric pricing structure, and create more consistency and transparency across our purchasing channels," the blog post added.

The changes will see the introduction of single prices in some areas and the removal of complicated discount structures in others.

Government pricing is also going to be offered at the lowest commercial pricing and customers will be given a price sheet that guides them through breaking down the cost of a purchase.

But the headlines that will draw the attention of partners is the planned 10% in commercial prices of Office 2019 and the price of Windows 10 Enterprise increasing to match the price of the Enterprise E3 offering.

E3 is going to refer to per user with the E5 per device SKU being discontinued from the start of October. Partners will get a preview of what it is all going to look like in terms of pounds and pence in the September price list.

Microsoft pulled partners and developers together last week at Inspire and covered plenty of ground around encouraging them to pitch more of its Office 365 products and services to customers.

There were also indications that there is going to be a concerted campaign aimed at pushing those users still on Windows 7 towards Windows 10 over the next year and half before support for the aging OS is wound up.

Price changes

According to the Microsoft blog post these are the details of how prices will change from October

Establishing a single, consistent starting price across all programs aligned to web direct for online services (OLS)
Removing the programmatic volume discounts (Level A and Open Level C) in Enterprise Agreement (EA)/EA Subscription, MPSA, Select/ Select Plus, and Open programs (Open, Open Value, Open Value Subscription)
Aligning government pricing for on-premises and online services to the lowest commercial price in EA/EAS, MPSA, Select Plus, and Open Programs
Delivering a newly designed Customer Price Sheet that better outlines how a customer’s price was derived (direct EA/EAS only)

Read more on Microsoft Windows Services

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