Microsoft is changing its SharePoint Client Access License structure and raising fees by 15% starting December 1. Maybe it's not too late to convince Microsoft to call it off?

SharePoint Server 2013 Does Away with Dual Versions

There will no longer be a standard and enterprise version in SharePoint Server 2013. Instead, it will be just a single version, and the price goes up by 37% when it debuts in 2013. Additionally, those who access SharePoint from more than one device have been getting such a good deal, Microsoft has decided to cash in on that trend. Volume licensing at Microsoft is divided among user CALs and device CALs. User CALs are going up by 15% in response to the surge in enterprise mobility

A user CAL allows one person to access SharePoint from any device, and because those people often do so from several devices, Microsoft has deemed this an opportunity. Device CALs, on the other hand, are the kind where SharePoint can be accessed from just one terminal. While the terminal can be shared, the price on this kind of license remains the same.

The pricing for Core CAL and Enterprise CAL Suites will also be affected by the price change.


User CALs are still generally a good deal even with the increased price. 


No Formal Announcement from Microsoft

Microsoft has not formally announced the price change. Instead, it is relying on its business partners to inform (or not) their customers about the change in the hope those customers will rush to renew their licensing agreements to avoid a price bump. Furthermore, Microsoft did formerly announce CAL price hikes in July 2007 and March 2011, so this move looks even more egregious. 

The added cost of early license renewal combined with recent price increases on other Microsoft properties like SharePoint Server 2013 and Lync Server 2013 will be unexpected expenses for some customers, Frances O'Brien, a Gartner researcher said in an October blog post.

It should be noted the price increases are for new contracts, and that those already with agreements will not see the increase until contracts expire. The new user CAL price for SharePoint Server Standard CAL will be US $63 based on Select A-level licensing and excluding Software Assurance.

Many products are affected by the CAL price increase, including (but not limited to):

  • Bing Maps Server
  • Exchange Server Standard and Enterprise
  • Project Server
  • SharePoint Server
  • System Center
  • Visual Studio TFS
  • Windows Server

Let us know in the comments if you heard about the price increase from a vendor or from a news source and if your company is making significant changes because of it.