Office 365 price cuts, new plans coming

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Office 365 price cuts, new plans coming

Haven't switched to Office 365 yet? New prices for small businesses are coming.

Microsoft has announced three new SMB pricing plans for Office 365 which will bring down the maximum cost per user and increase the number of seats available.

The SMB plans range from $US5 per user, per month to $US12.50 per user, per month. All are capped at 300 seats per plan.

All three plans offer access to the full Office Online suite (formerly Office Web Apps), 1TB of OneDrive for Business online storage per user, a 99.9% uptime SLA, on-premise Active Directory sync for single sign on, and 24-hour phone support.

In addition to these core features, the $US5 tier - Office 365 Business Essentials - has 50GB email storage with contacts and shared calendars through Exchange, web conferencing, IM and video through Lync, internal social networking through Yammer, and SharePoint.

For $US8.25 per user per month, you get Office 365 Business, which replaces the current $US12.50 Small Business Premium package. It includes full, cloud based editions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote and Publisher, and five desktop licenses for Microsoft Office, but not Yammer, SharePoint, Lync or Exchange functionality.

If you want those features, you'll need the $US12.50 Business Premium tier, which replaces the $US15.00 Midsize Business plan.

What next?

For those who are already signed up to Office 365 on one of their existing plans, two things will happen.

From 1 October, those on the existing Small Business and Small Business Premium plans will have their seat cap raised from 250 to 300.

Midsize Business customers, meanwhile, will have their per user, per month price cut from $US15 to $US12.50.

The transition period for existing customers runs for a year from 1 October 2014, during which time they can choose to stay on their existing plan or move to one of the new ones when they renew their subscription.

However, any renewals taking place after 1 October 2015 will have to be to one of the new plans.

While the new price plan isn't officially available until October this year, those who sign up to the Midsize Business plan between 1 August and 30 September will get it for the new price.

Australian pricing hasn't been made available yet.

Copyright © PC Pro, Dennis Publishing
Copyright © PC Authority, nextmedia
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