With the current global situation causing a lot of people to work from home, Microsoft 365 has become an important staple for many. Unfortunately, Microsoft has decided to raise the price of some of its 365 services, with the biggest increase going as high as 20%.
The Upcoming New Prices for Microsoft 365
The Redmond giant announced its plans on the Microsoft 365 blog. Fortunately, you still have a little time to prepare for the price hike, as the company won't raise them until March 1, 2022.
When that date arrives, Microsoft will raise the cost of its commercial 365 plans to their new prices. It's not a uniform raise across every service, so some plans will have a bigger price increase than others.
As Microsoft states:
On March 1, 2022, we will update our list pricing for the following commercial products: 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), and Microsoft 365 E3 (from $32 to $36).
Microsoft didn't go into a lot of detail about overseas pricing, but it did state that every country will also get a price hike in accordance with local market adjustments. As such, you should expect an increase to happen in March 2022, no matter where you live.
Microsoft defends the move, stating that "[the] updated pricing reflects the increased value we have delivered to our customers." It points out that this is the first "substantial" price revision since Microsoft 365's release 10 years ago, so it feels it's about time for the price to meet modern standards.
Other than that, Microsoft does not seem to intend on increasing the price of any further 365 plans. For example, both education and consumer-based plans will be left untouched for the time being.
A Price to Pay for Productivity
Microsoft 365 and Office 365 are a lot different than it was 10 years ago, especially now that they're the workhorse for work-at-home employees around the world. As such, don't be too surprised if Microsoft ups the price of your commercial 365 plan in the near future.
Of course, you need not have to tolerate the price hike if you don't want to. There are plenty of free alternatives to Office 365 you can try instead.