August 2020 announcements
This page details the announcements for Microsoft Partner Center for August 2020.
Partner Center API updates and user interface enhancements for the Education customer validation process
- Date: 2020-08-31
Partners selling Academic offers through the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) Program
Microsoft runs on trust and we are committed to providing a compliant, safe, and secure method of customer validation for transacting Academic offers in the Cloud Solution Provider program. As part of this commitment, we are introducing Partner Center API and user interface enhancements in quarter two of this fiscal year (FY21 Q2) that will add clarity and visibility into the customer vetting process as well as the ability to input more accurate data which will drive improved customer vetting success.
Partner Center enhancements
- New GET and POST Qualifications APIs to support accurate data entry and improve the Education customer validation process by Microsoft.
- User interface enhancements to support accurate data entry and improve the Education customer validation process by Microsoft.
Partners will have the opportunity to test these enhancements starting in October. We strongly encourage you to leverage this opportunity to gain a better understanding of the APIs and data entry required for successful customer vetting. We'll provide more details soon on the exact timing and how to participate. The existing Partner Center APIs will be retired before end of FY21 Q2 at which time all partners will need to have transitioned to using the new Partner Center APIs.
Library and Museum customers
In addition to the above enhancements we are also excited to announce that in FY21 Q2 we will enable Academic-priced offers for Library and Museum customers, expanding the Education customers you can transact CSP offers with.
Microsoft reserves the right to review the status of any customer or proposed customer as a qualified educational user. Please see the Academic Qualified Education User requirements for full details.
Next Steps/Additional Resources
- Review the new Partner Center User Interface and API changes in the Operations Readiness resources: Partner Center Education customer validation process enhancements
- Ensure your organization is familiar with the Academic Qualified Education User requirements.
- Share this information with the appropriate teams within your organization, and with your resellers, to help them prepare for these changes.
- Watch for an update on the October testing opportunity where we'll provide details on exact timing and how to participate.
Updates to the Microsoft 365 Voice Promotion
- Date: 2020-08-14
We've made some updates to the previously announced Microsoft 365 Business Voice Promotion. You can get the details by visiting the Partner Center resource gallery.
SDK Release on .NET Standard (v1.16.1)
- Date: 2020-08-12
Direct Bill partners and Indirect Providers participating in the CSP program who are using the Partner Center .NET SDK.
As of July 21, 2020, Partners can start downloading the version of .NET Standard SDK Microsoft Partner Center .NET SDK v1.16.1, along with updated public Partner Center SDK GitHub samples.
Direct Bill partners and Indirect Providers participating in the CSP program are eligible to download the latest version of .NET standard SDK. These changes will make the SDK compatible with the existing application using the .NET Framework 4.6.1 and above. The .NET Standard will support .NET Core 2.0 and above.
There has been a huge demand from partners requesting SDK in .NET Standard. The current version of SDK forces partners to use applications written in ASP.NET Framework, which is slow and costly compare to .NET core applications. Hence the migration to .NET standard can help address the issues with performance or compatibility with .NET Core.
- No further releases from Microsoft for .NET Framework 4.8 as it is the last in its line.
- Limits future development as most of libraries will release for .NET Core or .NET standard, which might not support current framework version.
- .NET Core is favorable to use with containers due to its lightweight nature.
- High-performance server runtime for Windows Server and Linux makes .NET Core a top performing web framework.
- Download the latest version of the .NET SDK v1.16.1
- Version: .NET SDK v1.16.1
- Sample Code: Sample Code
- GA: 8/12/2020
- There are no new API changes as part of the current release
Self-service purchasing for Microsoft Project and Microsoft Visio coming soon
- Date: 2020-08-12
Partners selling online services to commercial customers
We shared last year that Microsoft is enabling individuals and teams to purchase select services directly. Today we're announcing that self-service purchasing capabilities are coming soon for Microsoft Project and Microsoft Visio products. From September 15, 2020, individuals worldwide will be able to purchase subscriptions for the following products through self-service:
Note: Self-service purchase capabilities aren't available in India, or to customers who are eligible for Government or Education offers.
You'll be able to offer your services to individuals and teams without needing to go through the centralized IT procurement process to obtain required licenses. Your services can span Project and Visio, based on integration scenarios with Microsoft 365 and Power Platform.
Learn more about partner opportunities with Visio and Power Platform solutions in the Microsoft Inspire session Rebuild and reimagine business with Microsoft Visio and Power Platform. For additional information, please visit the self-service admin guide.
- Review all readiness resources in the Operations Readiness resources gallery: Customer self-serve purchase capability.
- Customers can try before they buy with Visio and Project trials, available now for Visio Plan 1 and Visio Plan 2, and Project Plan 1.
New Microsoft Teams Advanced Communications SKUs are now available
- Date: 2020-08-04
The new Advanced Communications add-on SKUs for Microsoft Teams became available on August 1, 2020.
All partners transacting through Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program
The new Advanced Communications add-on for Microsoft Teams is now available at $12 per user/month. The add-on SKUs can be purchased on top of any other Microsoft 365 suite that contains Microsoft Teams. Advanced Communications provides a new set of capabilities for large meetings, communication policies, and integrations, in addition to advanced tools for IT management.
Advanced Communications features
Released at launch
- Live event limits to 20 K participants (50 concurrent, 16 hours)
Released later in CY2020
- 1,000-person interactive Teams meeting
- Interactive meetings for 1,000 participants with the capability to enable up to 20,000 in a 'view only' meeting experience.
- Custom-branded meeting lobby
- Additional customizations, tools, and communications enhancements will be added to the SKU throughout the calendar year
|Offer name||Offer ID||Material ID|
|Advanced Communications for faculty||13219baa-468f-4eeb-bfaa-243216dbddca||2P8-00005|
|Advanced Communications for students||31a690b0-3945-4adf-98ab-644e0a879b3f||2P8-00006|
Frequently asked questions
- What is Advanced Communications? This new Microsoft Teams add-on enables customers to further enhance their communication experience. It can be purchased on top of any Microsoft 365 SKU they are subscribed to.
- How much does it cost? The commercial ERP is USD $12 per user/per month.
- Which customers can purchase the add-on? Commercial, Worldwide Commercial Public Sector, Education, and Nonprofit.
- How can it be purchased? The add-on can be purchased through EA/EAS, EES, CSP, or Web Direct.
- Where can it be sold? It can be sold in all current markets.
- What are the pre-requisites? Any Microsoft 365/Office 365 suite that includes Microsoft Teams.
- Share this information with the relevant contacts in your organization and understand the upsell and cross-sell opportunities. Review the resources section of the Teams Partner Guide.
Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) for Servers for Education available in September
- Date: 2020-08-04
All partners participating in the CSP program
Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) for Servers for Education available in Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program on September 1, 2020.
- Offer name: Microsoft Defender ATP for Servers for Education
- Offer ID: c7b9ab7e-8f80-4b4b-8aed-dcad61f28995
- Share this information with the appropriate contacts in your organization.
- Read the Microsoft Defender ATP documentation for more information about the product.
New Dynamics 365 Sales Premium bundle offer
- Date: 2020-08-03
Partners transacting Microsoft Dynamics 365
On August 1, 2020, Microsoft released a new Dynamics 365 Sales Premium bundle offer for commercial customers in all programs, and countries and regions.
Effective August 1, 2020, Microsoft has released a new Dynamics 365 Sales Premium bundle offer for customers in all programs, and countries and regions where Dynamics 365 Enterprise and Dynamics 365 Sales Insights are already available.
Review the Dynamics CSP Offers-August 2020 Excel document for details about these offers.
Share this information with appropriate contacts in your organization and familiarize yourself with the preview price list.
Announcing the availability of Visio Plan 1 and Plan 2 Trial Offers
- Date: 2020-08-03
All partners participating in the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program
Microsoft is introducing trial offers for Visio Plan 1 and Plan 2 starting August 1, 2020.
Microsoft Visio allows users to create professional diagrams effortlessly, collaborate more efficiently, connect to real-time data, and automate workflows. Trial offers for Visio Plan 1 and Plan 2 will be available starting August 1, 2020.
Microsoft Visio can be used across a range of industries and roles with integration into Microsoft 365, Microsoft Teams, and Power Platform solutions. Give your customers the tools they need to run their business.
What are the partner benefits?
Microsoft Visio is a product that will help you:
- Use organizational chart template and integration scenarios with Excel and Power BI to build a sustainable organizational structure
- Plan a safe return to the workplace with Visio floorplans to incorporate social distancing guidelines
- Adapt business models: Business analysis is at the core of the Visio value proposition. Adapt business models to the new way of working by mapping and redesigning critical business processes with Visio and get timely data insights with Power BI and Visio diagrams embedded in that application.
- Focus on value and cost reduction: Identify and automate repetitive processes and help your customers develop self-service workloads for common functional roles such as IT management, Human Resources, and others.
We are offering a free 30-day trial for Visio Plan 1 and Visio Plan 2 to help your customers experience these benefits. Partners can find trials in the monthly price list on the pricing and offers page in Partner Center. Trial offers will have "TRIAL" listed in the price list Secondary License Type column.
|Offer name||Offer ID|
|Visio Plan 1 Trial||7b6bb5a6-15c9-4ede-8eba-e2dfe2118b69|
|Visio Plan 2 Trial||20f1b560-c19a-4fc7-abc0-d8a797c06338|
- Learn more about Visio Plan 1 and Plan 2 at the Operations Resource Gallery
- We also recommend viewing the Inspire session about Helping customers to rebound and reimagine businesses with Microsoft Visio and Power Platform.