Google will swallow the cost of its online collaboration apps to harvest business users on Microsoft Office, a global sales bigwig has announced.
The search giant will cover the fees of Google Apps until its contract with Microsoft runs out.
Google didn’t name Microsoft specifically, but head of global sales for Google Apps for Work, Rich Rao, wrote of the offer: “If you are worried about switching to Docs because you still have an enterprise agreement (EA) with another provider, we’ll cover the fees of Google Apps until your contract runs out.”
The public list price for Google Apps is £3.30 per user per month, or £6.60 with unlimited storage and back up.
Google will also cover “some” of the costs of deploying its’ as-a-service Apps.
“Once your current EA is up, we offer a simple contract with no traps of gotchas,” Rao wrote.
Google is clearly making a play for those Microsoft shops on Office who Microsoft is trying to flip into Office 365 shops. In some cases, for such customers, it’ll be the ease and familiarity of remaining with Microsoft and dealing with their existing account reps.
For others, it’ll be a decision based on cost and culture. On cost, at least, Microsoft has been offering cut-price deals on Office 365 to get business.
Microsoft licensing expert Paul DeGroot told The Register earlier this year:
I know first hand of a case where a small customer got an extra 15 per cent off of everything else if they agreed to purchase some Office 365.
In another case I was told ... one customer agreed to add $2m for Office 365, which they had no intention of using, in exchange for a $6m overall discount.
Microsoft Enterprise Agreements run for three years for customers of volume. Google wants to put its docs into the possible change cycle as early as possible by swallowing the cost while getting users familiar with its apps. ®