Google cuts Chromebook price for businesses and schools
Google is letting schools and businesses buy Chromebooks upfront rather than via subscription – and charging them less to do so.
Chromebooks were first unveiled earlier this year, offered on a subscription plan to schools and businesses.
Google said some organisations have made it clear the three-year subscriptions do not fit with yearly budget cycles.
“To meet these customers’ needs, in addition to our three-year subscription model, today we are introducing an alternative payment option,” said Chrome product manager Glenn Wilson, in a post on the Google blog.
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“This new option gives schools and businesses a choice to pay upfront for Chromebooks with one year of access to the web-based admin management console, phone support, and hardware warranty coverage,” he said.
After the first year is over, schools or companies will need to pay a monthly fee for management console access and support, Wilson said.
Under the new upfront payment plan, businesses will pay $559 for Wi-Fi only or $639 for 3G, and $13 a month for support. Schools will pay $449 for the Wi-Fi only device or $519 for 3G, with support costing $5 a month in the second and third years.
UK prices weren’t immediately available, but in the US that compares to subscription pricing of $30 a month for businesses or $20 for schools, over three years. 3G is available for $3 extra a month.
That means buying the Wi-Fi only version upfront is less expensive at $871 over three years for businesses than the total $1,080 subscription cost.
The same follows for schools, with an upfront cost and two-years of support costing $569, while the subscription costs $720 over three years.
The deals appear to only apply to the Samsung-made Chromebook, and not the less expensive Acer edition.
Wilson also said Google has rolled out new features to the web-based management tools for Chromebooks, to make it easier to “deploy, monitor and customise” the devices.