CSPs, Content

Microsoft 365 and Office 365 Price Increases: Justified By Innovation?

Microsoft is raising prices for various Microsoft 365 Business and Office 365 cloud services. Amid the price hikes, Microsoft in a blog outlined its business case -- focusing on innovation & platform expansion -- for the new fees.

Microsoft says the following commercial products will shift to these monthly per-user prices starting on March 1, 2022:

  • Microsoft 365 Business Basic (from $5 to $6 per user);
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium (from $20 to $22);
  • Office 365 E1 (from $8 to $10);
  • Office 365 E3 (from $20 to $23);
  • Office 365 E5 (from $35 to $38)l; and
  • Microsoft 365 E3 (from $32 to $36).

These increases will apply globally with local market adjustments for certain regions, the company said. There are no price changes for education and consumer products at this time, Microsoft added.

Microsoft 365 and Office 365 Price Increases: Big Tech's Dominance In Focus

The price hikes surface as Microsoft appears to be gaining a firm grip on the SaaS application productivity market. No doubt, Google Workspace (formerly Google Docs) is giving chase. But Microsoft 365 and Office 365 feel like the "dominant" SaaS productivity application platforms across the global IT channel. (We'll dig up and publish some market share stats soon.)

Among the potential dangers facing Microsoft: Attracting regulatory scrutiny from the U.S. federal government and additional anti-trust agencies worldwide. Indeed, Big Tech anti-trust concerns -- mostly involving Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook ... and sometimes Microsoft -- continue to swirl worldwide.

Microsoft 365 Product Additions, SaaS Innovations

Still, Microsoft made a strong business case for the price increases. The company noted:

  • Since introducing Microsoft 365, the company has added 24 apps to the suites—Microsoft Teams, Power Apps, Power BI, Power Automate, Stream, Planner, Visio, OneDrive, Yammer, and Whiteboard.
  • The company has released over 1,400 new features and capabilities to address (1) collaboration and communication, (2) security and compliance, and (3) AI and automation, the company said.
Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.