Microsoft Loosening Licensing a Bit
If you caught the results of RCP
the magazine's reader
in our December issue, then you know that one of the few things partners
don't like about working with Microsoft is Redmond's rarely simple, sometimes
arcane licensing policies. In our survey, more than 60 percent of you said that
Microsoft's licensing procedures make its products difficult to sell.
Given that the respondents to our survey make at least part -- and, in most
cases, probably a large part -- of their living selling Microsoft's wares, licensing
issues and the hassles associated with them are a big deal. Well, late last
week, Microsoft eased partners' pain a little bit with some loosening of its
Of primary interest to partners will be Microsoft's Open Value Subscription
Program, through which partners will be able to offer customers subscriptions
-- which will function
almost like a lease -- for Microsoft applications. (We're projecting to
the future here because OVSP will be available in March.)
A company interested in Microsoft's stuff will be able to pay for it -- through
a partner, naturally -- on an annual-subscription basis rather than having to
fork over the money for it all at once and up front. At the end of the year,
the company will have the option of canceling the subscription, renewing it
or just buying the licenses outright.
The OVSP won't really ease the headaches caused by Microsoft's complex licensing
policies, but it will give partners a less-expensive and perhaps more manageable
option to offer to those customers that are reticent about paying the -- let's
face it -- high price to invest in Microsoft applications. It won't necessarily
make the purchase of Microsoft products cheaper, either, but it will make it
more flexible -- and flexibility is almost always a good thing for both partners
Of secondary interest, we're guessing, to partners is the loosening
of licensing restrictions on Windows Web Server 2008 (which, we must confess,
"other" channel publication first reported on last week). Redmond
is making Web
Server 2008 -- a Windows Server 2008 SKU...what, you haven't heard of it?
-- easier to license in order to make it more competitive with open-source competition.
Whatever Microsoft can do to make licensing easier and more flexible seems
to RCPU like good idea, so we're chalking this up as good news to start 2008.
Now, if Microsoft can just get its server bonanza launched without any (more)
How interested will your clients be in a subscription model from Microsoft?
How interested are you? Let me know at email@example.com.
Posted by Lee Pender on January 08, 2008 at 11:54 AM