Gartner Research

Microsoft Azure Services: What You Must Know and Do Before Committing to Azure

Published: 16 October 2017

ID: G00332403

Analyst(s): Marie Sienkowski , Dolores Ianni


Microsoft has evolved its discounting model for several Azure programs over the last year. Sourcing and vendor management leaders purchasing Azure services will need to leverage a mix of old and new program offerings to optimize cost and minimize risk.

Table Of Contents
  • Key Challenges



  • Model Projected Azure Renewal Increases by Comparing Current Versus Public List Prices
    • The Elimination of Volume Licensing Discounts Has Increased Rates for Some Customers
    • The Reduction in Some Prices Did Not Always Make Up for the Loss of VLA Discounts
    • And Now, Your Toughest Challenge: Projecting Annual Spend Going Forward
  • Reduce Your Azure Spend by Choosing a Mix of Payment Models, Programs and Entitlements (Such as HUB or Reserved Instances)
    • Monetary Commitments Lock Pricing for Term of the Agreement but Create Risk of Forfeiting Unused Payments
    • Azure Enterprise Dev/Test Subscriptions for Visual Studio Users
    • The New Azure Reserved Virtual Machine Instances
    • Azure Hybrid Use Benefit for Windows Server Under Software Assurance
    • License Mobility Rights through Software Assurance Can Reduce Overall Spend
  • Leverage the CSP Program for Azure Projects That Require Migration Support, but Don't Expect to Negotiate or Lock in Pricing
    • Changes to Microsoft Account Team Compensation to a Pure Consumption Model May Drive New, More Cost-Effective Opportunities to Purchase From Partners

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