The estimated pricing for new MSDN Subscriptions and "Team Foundation" CAL's were released today, and I'm sorry, but you've made development more expensive.
It used to be that the premiere MSDN offering was MSDN Universal. With that, you got limited use licenses for everything that Microsoft made, and Visual Studio .NET Enterprise Architect, the creme of the crop of development tools. You got all that for $2,799 a year to start, and $2,299 a year to renew.
The "replacement" MSDN plan that comes out when Visual Studio 2005 ships is MSDN Premium. You get Visual Studio 2005 Professional with that, and one of three Team Edition versions: Developers, which includes code analysis, coverage, profiling and unit testing tools; Architects, which includes modeling tools; or Testers which includes load testing tools. You also get one Team Foundation CAL for the subscription. Not one per year...one. All that for the svelte price of $5,469 a year.
Yes, you heard me, nearly $5,500 a year for what you currently get for $2,800. If you just want the CAL's, well, they're $499 each. That's just to access the Team Foundation Server, which has not had pricing announced yet. Of course, if you're large enough for volume licensing, that drops to a svelte $3,191 a year (including Software Assurance).
Plus, their roles are a bit muddled. Testing does code coverage testing as well, so does that mean that test will need the Team Edition for Developers to do that part of their job?
Why limit the code analysis, coverage, profiling and unit testing to Team Edition? You've already got the Express SKU's stripped down to nothing. Now you're telling developers who use the Professional SKU that they're not good enough to profile their code? Are you telling them that they're not good enough to unit test?
Are the Team Editions plugins for Visual Studio 2005 Professional, or are they completely seperate products? I'd feel very silly if my testers couldn't bring up code and do builds. I've had several instances at previous jobs where as a tester, I had to step through checkins to find when a bug first manifested itself.
Well, the Team Foundation CAL's are a decent deal at $499 each. That's cheaper than the $800 for a Perforce CAL plus the $99 for a FogBugz 4.0 CAL. But remember, Microsoft...those CAL's come with the server software AND the client software and they're proven products, not the standard Microsoft v1 releases. How much extra is the software to use those CAL's going to be?
I can see the packaging now for the 3 SKU's...the Express SKU's will be a picture of a "special needs" child riding a bicycle with massive training wheels. The Professional SKU will be a mountain bike ("Now you're able to get around without those limits we put on you.") Finally, the Team System SKU's will be pictures of gold-plated Ferrari's ("Leave those other 'Professional's' in the dust...")