Gartner Research

How Microsoft Price Increases Impact Your Licensing Strategy

Published: 27 March 2015

ID: G00272382

Analyst(s): Stephen White


New Microsoft software releases require customers to address the impact of constantly changing licensing terms, usage rights and prices. IT procurement professionals must review these trends and adapt strategies to deliver flexibility while maintaining the lowest sustained cost of licensing.

Table Of Contents
  • Impacts


Impacts and Recommendations

  • IT procurement professionals may have to address increased upgrade and renewal costs for EAs, given Microsoft has used new product versions as an opportunity to raise prices nearly 20% since 2012
    • Prevalent Changes in Application Pricing, Led by Dynamics AX, CRM and Project
    • Windows Server Standard and Enterprise Editions Both Increased by Over 20%
    • Application Platform Products — SQL, SharePoint and Visual Studio — Subject to a Series of Price Increases
  • Following Microsoft's provision of free versions and upgrades to consumers and small-business clients, IT procurement professionals will see increased revenue pressure on previously stable Office and Windows Enterprise pricing, potentially affecting their agreement costs
    • Windows OS Prices Remain Unchanged Given Market Pressures
    • Office Pricing — On-Premises Stable and Online Reduced
  • User-based licensing cuts licensing costs for mobile strategies compared with licensing per device, but IT procurement professionals who choose per-user licenses still incur increased costs by a premium of up to 30%
    • User CAL Price Differentiation Strategy
    • Windows Per-User Subscriptions a Step Toward Windows as a Service

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