Microsoft 365 Licensing Updates

Microsoft’s December 2018 Licensing News article has three topics of interest covering Microsoft 365 licensing updates. Firstly, EA and MPSA customers can now take advantage of a single SKU for Microsoft 365 which means that they see a single item in their Admin Centers and License Summaries, rather than seeing Office 365, Windows and EMS as separate components.

Secondly, there’s details of Microsoft’s new Home Use Program offer. Historically, HUP has been a Software Assurance benefit where users of devices licensed with Office + SA could purchase Office for their home PCs at a heavily discounted price. That benefit still exists for Office 2019 but the article reveals that this will come to an end on 30 June, 2019.

The new HUP offer allows individuals to purchase Office 365 Home or Office 365 Personal annual subscriptions at a 30% discount. This is available to customers who have Office with Software Assurance but is also available to customers who qualify with a certain number of Office 365/Microsoft 365 E3 or E5 licences: 2,000 for commercial organisations, and 13,000 for education or charity institutions.

Now, this isn’t available worldwide yet and although you can see it’s live in most countries (see the UK site here, for example http://bit.ly/2B6guQG), the article states that China and Japan will have this benefit on 1 April, 2019, and if you check out the US site (http://bit.ly/2sOPW1Q) there’s a message telling you that the US launch will be in early 2019.

And finally, there’s an update on the dual use rights available when a customer has a Microsoft 365 E3 or E5 From SA licence. Currently there are special rights detailed in the Product Terms which allow customers to install “traditional” Office Professional Plus as well as Office 365 ProPlus. The article states that these rights will be removed from 1 August, 2019 so customers renewing agreements after that date will no longer be entitled to the special installation rights.

Find the December 2018 Licensing News article here: http://bit.ly/2R3bV2u.

Azure Marketplace Invoicing

Third-party services purchased through the Azure Marketplace are typically invoiced separately in an Enterprise Agreement, outside of Monetary Commitment. From 1 March, 2018 there were some Linux Support options and Linux virtual machines that were changed to consume Monetary Commitment.

Find the announcement and list of relevant services here: http://bit.ly/2Nn74Ed.

June 2016 EA Program Guide

There’s an updated (June 2016) Enterprise Agreement Program Guide. The major amendment is for the change in the minimum number of users/devices from 250 to 500 which came into effect on 1 July 2016. There are also other additions for some new SA benefits such as the Hybrid Use Benefit.

As usual, you can find this guide in our Licensing Guides store here: http://bit.ly/MSLicensingGuides.

Azure Support Upgrades for EA Customers

Microsoft announce a free Azure Support upgrade for EA customers.

It’s available for new or existing customers who have Azure Services on their EA and gives them an upgrade to an Azure Support Plan between 1 May 2016 and 30 June 2017 for 12 months.

The details from Microsoft are split across these two pages: http://bit.ly/1XZCUpL and http://bit.ly/1TBVG5k but we’ve consolidated it into the table below:

Azure Support Upgrade

Take a customer who has not purchased any Azure Support (the first row) – if he’s made a Monetary Commitment of less than $100,000 then he’s upgraded to an Azure Standard Support Plan, but if he spends more than $10,000 a month on Azure Services for 3 consecutive months or he does make a Monetary Commitment of at least $100,000 then he’s upgraded to Professional Direct Support.

You can see the options for the existing Standard Support customer – he’s automatically upgraded to Professional Direct Support but with the higher spend will also get 6 App Consulting Services sessions. And the existing Professional Direct Support customer receives either 6 or 12 App Consulting Services sessions dependent on his spend on Azure Services.

List prices are $300/month for Standard and $1,000/month for Professional Direct Support (http://bit.ly/1rHFmY4) and Microsoft say that the upgraded support will be enabled automatically by September 2016.

You can find the fine print on this offer and a description of App Consulting Services here: http://bit.ly/1TBVG5k.

MSDN Dev/Test Offer

There’s a new offer for MSDN subscribers who want to run dev and test workloads in Azure.

Essentially you set up an MSDN Dev/Test Subscription in your EA or MPSA and then you get special rates on certain services (such as virtual machines) and the usual EA/MPSA rates on other ones. Even better, it’s all managed through the usual Azure Enterprise Portal.

Note that this is completely unrelated to the Azure credit that MSDN subscribers also get, and if a customer doesn’t have an EA/MPSA then there is a similar MSDN Dev/Test offer on a pay-as-you-go basis.

Find full details here: http://bit.ly/1VDYthQ.

EA Transitions are Removed

With the introduction of Online Services in the EA, customers were able to transition to Online Services from their on-premises licenses.

The term “transition” was a reserved word for situations where a customer, in effect, converted their SA licenses into Online Services USLs.

Customers were initially allowed to use special transition licences mid-way through a year which led to some extraordinarily tricky licensing scenarios, and then From SA USLs were introduced which could only be used at Anniversary, with Add-ons being used mid-way through a year – much simpler!

Transitions are now officially at the end of the line; the term was removed from the EA agreement last year, and now it’s gone from the February 2016 Product Terms too.

EA Minimum Requirements

Microsoft announce that the minimum requirements for both the subscription and perpetual flavours of the Enterprise Agreement will go from 250 users/devices to 500 from 1st July 2016.

The recommendation for smaller customers is to buy through the MPSA or CSP, but existing customers CAN renew their EA by extending it for an additional 36-month term if they want to – even after 1st July.

Read the full Microsoft blog post here: http://bit.ly/1Klwhfg

Enterprise Agreement Program Guide – updated April 2014

If you need an overview of the EA then this Enterprise Agreement Program Guide might be just the ticket. Updated in April 2014 it includes licensing changes for Windows Enterprise, and covers Azure as well as the Server and Cloud Enrolment. There’s also advice on SA credit if you’re renewing SA from another agreement.

Download it here: http://bit.ly/1j8qQli.