Microsoft Doles Out Dynamics CRM Online 2013 Freebies
Customers of the software giant's cloud-based CRM suite are entitled to free non-production instances and storage.Microsoft has sweetened the deal for subscribers of its cloud-based customer relationship management platform, Dynamics CRM Online 2013 (Fall '13 release). Uma Maheswari Anbazhagan of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM team announced in a blog post that customers of the company's cloud CRM product can now take advantage of a couple of new perks, namely "a free non-production instance and free storage," which were first announced at Microsoft World Wide Partner Conference 2013. Non-production instances, explained the Microsoft staffer, "are add-on instances that are separate from your production instance. They are not the trial instances, so they do not expire." Further, all users in production instances are also users in non-production instances, barring any security group restrictions. Non-production Dynamics CRM Online 2013 instances typically cost $150 per month. The free offering adds up to substantial savings for some organizations. (Customers can buy additional instances at full cost.) In contrast, each production instance costs $549 per month. Eligibility hinges on a couple of factors, according to Anbazhagan. "If your CRM subscription includes 25 or more professional USLs (User Subscription Licenses), you will be granted a free non-production instance." Plus, it will take a bite out each subscriber's available cloud storage. Anbazhagan clarified that "all instances under your subscription, including the free test instance will consume the existing storage that is available to the account."
A message appearing just below the Dynamics CRM top menu will alert administrators to their free non-production instance. A similar message will appear if customers have been granted additional free storage.