Microsoft is trying to push small businesses to upgrade to Office 2007/2010 and Windows 7 with a new "50 percent off" discount offer. It applies to up to two previous versions of both products, which means Office XP, Office 2003, Windows XP, and Windows Vista.
Microsoft has decided to expand its "50 percent off Up-To-Date discount" to include two prior versions on both Office Professional and Windows worldwide. The offer, which is available until June 30, 2010, allows businesses running Windows XP, Vista, Office XP, and Office 2003 to take advantage of the Up-To-Date discount available through the Open Value Subscription Program (OVS) to get 50 percent off their Year 1 payment.
Microsoft admits that the percentage slash is a little iffy, saying that the "50% discount calculations are based on estimated retail prices. Reseller prices may vary." In the US, the software giant notes that this translates to "paying $35.00 for a Windows 7 Professional Upgrade and/or $91.00 for Office 2007 Professional Plus in year 1, plus receiving all of the Software Assurance benefits (such as an automatic upgrade to Office 2010 when it launches, Office Home Use Rights, and much more)."
The Microsoft Office Professional Plus deal applies to companies with OEM, Retail, or Volume licenses for Office XP Professional, Office 2003 Professional, or Office 2007 Professional. Once Office 2010 arrives in June 2010, the deal will no longer apply to Office XP. The Windows 7 Professional Upgrade on the other hand, applies to companies with OEM, Retail, or Volume licenses for Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista Business, or Windows 7 Professional. The Up-To-Date discount first launched in the US and Canada just under two years ago in January 2008, allowing one prior version of either Windows or Office to qualify for the discount. Now the offer encompasses up to two prior versions.
Microsoft knows quite well that the biggest competitors to Windows 7 and Office 2010 are its predecessors, and this new licensing promotion is clearly trying to address that. The fact that it now includes up to two prior versions shows just how eager Redmond is to stop its users from clinging to Windows XP and Office 2003.
Source: ars technica