Cloud Price Wars May be Over as Microsoft Set to Increase Azure Charges

Cloud Price Wars May be Over as Microsoft Set to Increase Azure Charges

It's been a wild ride the past couple years, with Google, Amazon, and Microsoft bidding to become the cheapest service in the Cloud. But, the price wars may be over, according to a post by Aidan Finn.

In an email received on June 30th (Aidan hails from Ireland), Microsoft announced a 13% increase in the Euro Zone and a 26% increase in Australia. The price hikes will officially take hold on August 1, 2015 and according to the email text, is to better align prices with other markets.

Enterprise Agreement (EA), Enterprise Subscription Agreement (EAS), and Server and Cloud Enrollment (SCE) customers will get a little security, though. The email goes on to say that these accounts will have "price protection" on existing Azure services. But, that phrase seems to be carefully crafted, as it doesn't suggest that pricing for new services will be grandfathered into current agreements.

The pricing structure modifications could reflect the changes in exchange rates in those areas but also be due, in small part, to the waves of turmoil with the Euro in relation to Greece's debt crisis. Microsoft has always maintained that Azure pricing will reflect local operations costs and exchange rates and that pricing could fluctuate. And, in this way, Microsoft's goal of turning the Cloud into a utility is closer to becoming a reality.

As Microsoft raises its Cloud prices, does this give Amazon and Google breathing room to do the same without looking like the bad guy?

But, while the pricing news is focused now on the Euro Zone and Australia, some suggest that pricing increases are scheduled to go live worldwide this year. Cheap Cloud isn't a sure thing and as it becomes more prominent for businesses, I'd start watching those bills as closely as a TimeWarner or Comcast cable bill.

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