In a recent letter to TechNet subscribers, Microsoft announced that they will stop accepting new subscriptions of its TechNet Subscription service on August 31, 2013 and will effectively shut down when the last of the current subscribers end. The company said that the reason for discontinuing the service is to allow for the company to direct free experiences for IT professional through its other TechNet services.
Based on the letter, current subscribers will still receive benefits of the service until their contracts end and will still take renewals until August 31, 2013. The product keys generated in the TechNet subscription and linked to a device won’t expire, but non-linked product keys generated will expire as well as products downloaded as part of a current subscription.
Microsoft TechNet had been one of the best deals around for IT professionals or even PC enthusiast. For $199-$299, customers can access a library of hundreds of software the company offered. From Windows XP to Windows 8, to even their server counterpart and office applications. Though the service is designed for evaluation purpose, it was not set on the software; just on the license agreement. This, however, caused a rise in piracy for the company. Some of its customers would buy a subscription, generate keys, and resale them through places like eBay (usually at ridiculously low cost). Though Microsoft has made some attempts to curb piracy by limiting the number of keys and expiring them when the subscription ends, we are not sure if it was successful.
Though Microsoft TechNet is soon to cease to exist, its developer-focused package, MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network) Subscriptions will still be offered, giving the same functionalists of TechNet Subscriptions. The only downside, it is going to cost more. Compared to TechNet Standard or Professional, which cost $199 for standard and $299 for professional and renewals were $50 less, a similar MSDN Operating Systems package cost $699 and renewals for $499.