Tag Archives: sharepoint

Office 365 Gets Revised Pricing

In case you haven’t already noticed, Office 365 has had it’s UK pricing refreshed for the “E” Plans…

So, the entry level E1 plan is now just £5.25 per user/month (was £6.00).  This puts it a mere £1.25 per user/month more expensive than the P plan which remains at £4.00 per user/month.

The E1 plan includes:

  • Active Directory integration
  • 24/7 support from Microsoft
  • Enterprise grade Email, Calendar, Contacts with Exchange Online
  • 25GB mailboxes
  • Colaboration with SharePoint online and Instant Messaging
  • Instant messaging, presence and online meetings with Lync Online
  • AntiVirus & Antispam filtering for email and sites
  • License rights to access on-premise Exchange/SharePoint and Lync Servers.

The E2 plan is now £9 oer user/month and includes everything in the E1 plan plus:

  • Office Web Apps (Word/Excel/PowerPoint and OneNote on the web)

(I think the E2 will remain relatively unloved – it needs more to diferentiate itself if customers are going to fork out the extra £3.75 per user per month)

My favoured plan – the E3 plan now comes in at a tantalising £13.25 per user/month and frankly – at that price I think it’s a bit of a steel!  It includes everything on the E1 & E2 plan and adds:

  • The complete Office Professional Plus (the client version).  Yes, that’s right  – all E3 subscribers get install rights for the current and all future Office Pro Plus version for the duration of their subscription.
  • SharePoint Online gets enhanced with Visio Services (for visualising data and workflows)  and Access Services (for web based database functionality)
  • Unlimited e-mail storage.  Yes I did say unlimited.  Your Exchange Online mailbox will still hold 25GB of data, but you have as much archive storage as you want for all those old e-mails you just can’t bring yourself to delete!

And finally, the E4 plan is now cheaper than the E3 plan was:  Just £14.50.

E4 adds full enterprise voice capabilities to Lync Server on-premise.

As you probably gather, I normally recommend the E1 or E3 plans to customers and this new pricing is pretty compelling.

Please get in touch if you want to know more about Office 365, would like us to assist with your Office 365 trial (or set one up for you), or would like us to support/assist with your existing Office 365 deployment.

Hill Data Systems: Cloud. Data. Sales.  Support.  Sorted.

Office 365 – Moving from Beta to a paid subscription (P plan to E plan)

I had an interesting day today: it should have been a straightforward case of taking a client’s Office 365 beta account and converting it into a paid-for subscription and then configuring their devices.

The client had already verified the domain they wanted to use (this is the time consuming part of the initial configuration of Office 365 as you have to wait for the global DNS system to replicate some changes – it can take anywhere from a few minutes to a couple of days!) so I figured it would be a quick and easy job.

But then comes the gotcha.  The beta subscription the client was on was a “P1” plan (small business), and the subscription they wanted to buy was an “E” plan (with all the Enterprise lovelyness of SharePoint).

The thing that everyone needs to be aware of is this: a “P” plan CAN NOT be upgraded to a “E” plan.  Somehow I’d actually managed to do this on a beta account a few months ago so thought it didn’t apply to Office 365 beta accounts.  But it doesn’t.

The work around?

  1. Create a new account with a new <domain>.onmicrosoft.com domain (because you can’t currently delete your existing subscription).
  2. Remove the vanity domain from all users in your beta subscription (the vanity domain is your “public” domain, e.g. hilldatasystems.co.uk/)
  3. Delete the vanity domain from the beta subscription
  4. Create the vanity domain on your new subscription and wait for it to verify (the time consuming bit!)
  5. Set up your users
  6. Configure your apps
  7. Migrate any data from your original subscription

I could have done without this today, but we got there in the end.

I would imagine most Office 365 beta accounts are the P1 plan, and so far, all of my clients are after the features of the E plans – so this is a “gotcha” of some note.

As subscriptions (beta or otherwise) can’t currently be deleted (although I’m assured by Microsoft Technical Support that this feature is in the pipleline) you have to go through the rigmoroll of setting up a new <domain>.onmicrosoft.com domain and then reverifying your public facing domain.

Microsoft Technical Support did also indicate that the ability to upgrade from a “P” plan to an “E” plan is being developed, but until then: beware!