Visual Studio Online is now Visual Studio Codespaces, and lower prices are on the way

Visual Studio logo
Visual Studio logo (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Visual Studio Online is being rebranded as Visual Studio Codespaces.
  • The change helps reflect the capabilities of the service.
  • Microsoft is also introducing lower prices for Visual Studio Codespaces starting May 19, 2020.

Microsoft's Visual Studio Online will now be known as Visual Studio Codespaces. The rebranding reflects the capabilities of the service better than being branded as simply an online editor, according to Microsoft. Microsoft announced the name change in a blog post earlier today (via ZDNet). Additionally, Microsoft announced lower prices for the service that will go into effect on May 19, 2020.

Microsoft explains in its blog post that developers view Visual Studio Online as more than an "editor in the browser." Specifically, Microsofts that developers say "the capabilities of this cloud-hosted dev environment make it the space where I want to write all my code." Because having online in the name can suggest a lighter or limited version of a service, Microsoft is rebranding the service to Visual Studio Codespaces.

Microsoft also breaks down new pricing for the service in the blog post. Starting May 19, if you use a Standard Linux instance type (4 cores, 8GB RAM), it will cost you $0.17 per hour. Currently, a Standard Linux instance type costs $0.45 per hour. Premium Linux instance types (8 cores, 16GB RAM) will cost $0.34 per hour compared to their current rate of $0.87 per hour. Microsoft points out that these prices are approximate, and you can use the Azure pricing calculator to determine how much it will cost. That calculator will be updated by Build 2020 (May 19-21).

If a developer has self-hosted environments, any machine can be registered to Visual Studio Codespaces for free. Developers can then connect to it from VS Code or Microsoft's browser-based editor.

Sean Endicott
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at