In January 2022 there are important changes to the volume licence Business and Enterprise plans for Microsoft 365, Office and Windows.
Monthly plans will cost 20% more, making annual plans more enticing. Microsoft says “introduces a monthly term option that will enable partners to provide customers with flexibility at a premium price,”
However, the option to cut short a longer license will be dropped. Customers who stop using Office part way through its term still have to pay for the rest of the licence agreement.
They are changes to the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program only. They do not apply to prices for Microsoft 365 consumer plans (Family and Personal) … yet.
“New Commerce Experience”
These price increases have their own marketing euphemism “New Commerce Experience” which Microsoft describes … we kid you not … as a “transformational journey”.
Understanding Microsoft’s volume licencing has always been a morass of acronyms, plans, euphemisms and straight-up “BS”.
This latest news is no different. Under the incomplete title “Coming to the Cloud Solution Provider program: seat-based offers in new commerce” is an undated blog post with TWO sets of later revisions (5 October and 11 November). Anyone trying to understand the announcement must merge the original post with the later revisions to figure it all out.
The ‘New Commerce Experience’ was supposed to start in October 2021.
All this is on top of the 9-25% price increases on Microsoft Business and Enterprise plans announced back in August 2021.
Delayed start to the price rises
Officially these changes start on 1 January 2022 but there are some “promotional prices” available for the first few months of 2022.
- 5% discount on annual-term offers
- Annual term promotional pricing will be in effect through March 2022; however, Microsoft reserves the right to extend annual term promotional pricing up to, and including, June 2022.
- Monthly term offers priced the same as annual term.
- Monthly term promotional pricing will be in effect through June 2022.
In effect, Microsoft is suspending the monthly price rise for a few months and discounting 5% to switch over to annual licences.