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Navigating the Upcoming Changes to the Azure RI Exchange Policy

Navigating the Upcoming Changes to the Azure RI Exchange Policy

As cloud infrastructure becomes central to business operations, it's essential to understand the nuances of cloud resource management for streamlining your resources and gaining cost savings. An Azure Reserved Instance (RI) offers a fantastic way to maximize cost savings, allowing up to 72% off compared to pay-as-you-go pricing with a 1- or 3-year commitment. Currently, Microsoft offers flexibility with Azure RIs, permitting exchanges for another reservation of a similar type or in a different region. But significant changes are on the horizon for next year. 

Extended Grace Period Announced 

In October 2022, Microsoft announced a pivotal update to Azure compute reservations: the deprecation of the exchange feature, originally set for January 1, 2024. However, to support organizations in their resource planning, an extended grace period has been granted. You now have until at least July 1, 2024, to make any necessary exchanges to your Azure compute reservations. 

Azure-exchange-timeline-diagram

What Changes Are Coming? 

While the policy start date remains January 1, 2024, the grace period offers additional planning time. Compute reservations purchased prior to the end of the grace period can be exchanged one more time after the grace period ends. This flexibility is key for businesses adjusting to long-term strategies in a dynamic cloud market. 

What Stays the Same? 

Instance size flexibility remains available for VM sizes, allowing some leeway in adapting to varying workload demands. However, take note that exchanges for regions and instance series will no longer be possible under the new policy. 

Planning for the Future 

This extension is an opportunity to reassess your cloud architecture and resource distribution. It's a call to action for deliberate planning and a strategic approach to your organization's cloud resource management. Last year, Microsoft provided organizations with an alternative way to save on select Azure services through the Azure Savings Plan.

Azure RI ExchangeThe Azure Savings Plan for Compute is a pricing plan that grants eligible customers reduced prices on select Azure compute resources in exchange for a 1- or 3-year commitment to spend a specified hourly amount. Although the savings from Azure Savings Plan are not as high as savings from certain Azure Reserved Instances, Azure Savings Plan provides a way for companies with dynamic workload patterns to benefit from reduced prices and more flexibility.

The great news is there is no time limit on when customers will be able to trade in their Azure reserved instances for a savings plan and Microsoft continues to add services to Azure Savings Plan. Just last month it was announced that Azure Container Apps is now eligible for Azure savings plan for compute.  

How CloudServus Can Help 

As a top 1% Microsoft Solutions Partner, CloudServus is poised to offer expert guidance through this transition. Our Azure Cost Optimization Assessment is designed to help you understand these changes, identify the optimal structure for your cloud resources, and ensure you make the most of the extended grace period. 

Don't wait until the grace period's end to reevaluate your Azure compute strategy. Contact CloudServus to start your Azure Cost Optimization Assessment and proactively manage your cloud investments. 

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