Microsoft bumps support prices for Windows, Office

Microsoft's per-incident customer support prices were quietly bumped last week as the company launched Windows Vista. Prices for both Windows Vista and XP support were raised, from $39 to $59 per incident while support prices for Office XP and Office 2007 went from $35 to $49 per incident. General support inquiries as well as inquiries for other software went unchanged, remaining at $35 per incident. New retail customers, however, will be able to get 90 days of support free of charge, and Microsoft says that the company will always help customers with virus or security issues free of charge.

"This change was timed in conjunction with the worldwide launch of Windows Vista and 2007 Microsoft Office system to retail customers but was made public on December 8. The new assisted support pricing model is in-line with industry standards and has been set globally in reference to GDP (gross domestic product) per capita to more accurately reflect the value of and Microsoft's investment in the customer support experience with Windows and Office products. These prices reflect new technology usage and customer implementation, which is paramount as Microsoft customers use more integrated technology solutions," said a Microsoft spokesperson.

News source: Ars Technica

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I don't have to worry, no doubt it will be for "United States & Canada Only" just like everything else that company does.

Just to let everyone of you people out there who are making fun of the ones who do tech support... Where and the hell do you guys think all of the KB articals come from on the support.microsoft.com site? from you people who call in about the problem..

you need a fix for something that microsoft hasn't even released yet? well if you call up tech support and if there isn't away to fix that issue, then microsoft well bring out updates for that program.

So other wise, why don't you guys stop and look at yourself before even think about bashing tech support...

Paid support for what is already the most expensive OS (unless you buy the lowest end upgrade editions of XP and Vista), sounds fun.

Seriously it should be included.

Well they're just the company that keeps on giving.

I never realised why people hate Microsoft so much, missing the whole XP launch, but now -- geez. I won't stand in the way.

Ridiculous... if you get the job of BUYING a legal copy of (a well known pirated) software, they sould not ask for more money if the software hangs or fullfill the user's mind of doubts about using it.

Exactly. It should of been included in the cost of the product itself. I understand running call centres costs a fortune but if other companies are providing free support, then they more likely have the same support model as MS but is providing FREE support to make customers more happy.

Do I call a business only to be asked to pay to get support? That absurd. But at least the internet is providing a free wealth of support and information that people would've pay through call supports. So spread the word that if any one got computer problems, to tell them to check the internet first for free support.

Tech support sucks, doesn't seem to matter which company its for. None of them seem to speak english, and they are rarely any help. Your better off taking the computer into a shop than calling them, and it will prolly cost less. Thats way to much.

Uhm, when you call MS tech support you can request (politely) that you want to be connected with someone who speaks better English. It's not that hard of a thing to do and if done the polite way then there is no offense taken.

i agree tech supports sucks in general with most companies ... as they get these foreign people who cant even talk english properly to where u can understand them... they need to hire "real" americans (if your in USA) lol (dont mean to sound racists but it's basically for the most part true as to what im saying).

even though tech support rarely helps on pc stuff in general, i have seen some people from time to time actually give me a perfect answer to my question but it's fairly rare.

cause im sure most people in these neowin.net forums are above average pc users, knowledge wise.... so when we have a problem odds are the "standard crap" they tell most people that fix there problems aint going to work with us. :(

p.s. to MrCobra ... you got a decent point... but if you ask me i dont think we should have to deal with that crap in the first place

ThaCrip said,
i agree tech supports sucks in general with most companies ... as they get these foreign people who cant even talk english properly to where u can understand them... they need to hire "real" americans (if your in USA) lol (dont mean to sound racists but it's basically for the most part true as to what im saying).

even though tech support rarely helps on pc stuff in general, i have seen some people from time to time actually give me a perfect answer to my question but it's fairly rare.

cause im sure most people in these neowin.net forums are above average pc users, knowledge wise.... so when we have a problem odds are the "standard crap" they tell most people that fix there problems aint going to work with us. :(

p.s. to MrCobra ... you got a decent point... but if you ask me i dont think we should have to deal with that crap in the first place ;)

Hmmm.... it looks like 'real' Americans cannot spell properly.

ricknl said,
Hmmm.... it looks like 'real' Americans cannot spell properly.

Education aside the point remains, outsourcing call centers severely reduces the quality of them.

Wow what an amazing idea to staff call centres with "real" Americans, this will surely benefit the Native American community as it will provide a large amount of jobs and improve the quality of life for their families.

dude, if your saying that tech support.. Then that makes you really stupid, since the ones who do the tech support get the answers from the same place that you would find them.. Online :)

So if you don't know how to do basic troubleshooing, searching the internet for away to fix the problem your having... Then your really stupid... all it takes for someone to know how to "Read" and find answers...


I should know, i do this for a living, and i kinda laugh at people who call into tech support asking for help.. (But i know i shouldn't because most of the ones who do call in, are mostly people who don't know much about computer systems)...

Hmmmm...last time I talked to Microsoft support the person I talked to was barely literate and completely clueless. So, the support quality goes down and the price goes up? Okay, sounds about right.

Not really the greatest idea for MS when they are already under fire for the retail prices for Vista.
I wonder who advises them on PR - maybe Kevin Federline?

raskren said,
Under fire? From where? Anywhere outside of Neowin? I can't find it.

Bingo! Besides ultimate Vista is priced almost the same as XP for equivalent versions (obviously ultimate has no rquivalent). It wasnt an issue in the past and still isnt because most ppl get the OS OEM anyway. Outside of tech sites I doubt many ppl know how much windows sells for or even care since for all intensive purposes it comes bundled as part of an overall system cost.

Well, they did add two new products to the mix now, Vista and Office 2007, so supporting more products would raise costs overall, MS would like to kill off older versions of Windows/Office but they just can't, and it adds to their costs in the end, thus making everything else cost more.

But considering the amount of money that they're charging, and mostly over their mismanagament issues during Vista's developement, they should be charging those "per incident" customers less.

It makes sense but I doubt when MS cuts older products, the prices would go down. That would make too much sense

i hate to burst your bubble on that this one.. but micrsoft pays out $35 for each call that has been taken by tech support.. So microsoft is really losing money on it.. not gaining

Sn4k36 said,
i hate to burst your bubble on that this one.. but micrsoft pays out $35 for each call that has been taken by tech support.. So microsoft is really losing money on it.. not gaining

And yet their profits went up to $2.9 billion from $2.6 billion. Wonder how that could have happened if they're losing so much money.