When you can't beat 'em in the tablet and smartphone market, license 'em. That seems to be the tactic that Microsoft will begin using on December 1, 2012 when it starts charging more for user client-access licenses.
Many companies are now embracing the BYOD (bring your own device) model, allowing employees to bring their own tablets, smartphones or laptops to work. According to a post on Business Insider, businesses that use Microsoft enterprise software like SharePoint pay for the part that runs on the server and also for the number of clients that are using the software. Companies with more employees pay more than those with fewer people on staff.
There are two kinds of client access licenses (CALs) that enterprises can buy: a "Device CAL" that covers each device, and a "User CAL" that covers all devices that a particular employee uses. For companies using the BYOD model, User CALs were a pretty good deal. Well, that's what Microsoft is going to start charging more for on December 1, raising the price of a User CAL by 15 percent.
It should be noted that the higher price also pertains to Windows phones and laptops and Surface tablets, although Business Insider does point out that better deals are probably available from Microsoft for an all-Windows environment.
The enterprise software affected includes Microsoft Exchange, Project Server, SharePoint Server, Visual Studio Team Foundation Server and multiple CALs for Windows Server.