Google has publicly informed customers that the price of G Suite subscriptions would go up in April, explaining the first-ever price hike in the context of upgraded functionality for its groundbreaking office productivity suite.
"Over the last ten years, G Suite has grown to provide more tools, functionality and value to help businesses transform the way they work," wrote David Thacker, vice president of product management for G Suite, on the Google Cloud blog.
"The one thing that hasn't changed over this time is price," Thacker said.
On 2 April, after 12 years on the market, pricing will change when G Suite Basic goes up $1 per user per month, and the Business tier goes up $2 per user per month.
Google advised customers to coordinate with partners.
"Any customer that licenses G Suite through a reseller should hear from their partners directly regarding the new pricing, or they can reach out to their partners proactively," Thacker said.
Resellers so far have only gotten a letter from Google preceding the public announcement and are waiting to learn more on a worldwide conference call Google has scheduled with partners for 5 February, one Google partner told CRN USA.
At the same time, Microsoft partners are raring to take advantage of the price increase in their marketing campaigns.
Microsoft, which followed Google into the cloud-based office tools market with Office 365, has mostly maintained fixed prices since the release of that product while also bulking up its feature set.
At a local level though, Microsoft only just increased the prices of its cloud offerings, including Office 365, last month for Australian customers by as much as 8 percent.
When Microsoft introduced price increases for Office 365 enterprise customers without Software Assurance plans back in 2014, Google and its partners were quick to pounce.
Google's former enterprise chief, Amit Singh, at the time retweeted the CRN USA story reporting on the partial Office 365 price hike with a comment that the cost of cloud computing should be going down.
The Google executive had a suggestion for disgruntled customers: "Move to @googleapps."
While comparing G Suite to Office 365 is an apples-to-oranges exercise, the price increase will make Google's product the more expensive option for many businesses.