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Google Axes Free Google Apps For Businesses 141

New submitter Macfox writes "In a move to focus on serving small business better, Google has axed the popular free edition of Google Apps for businesses. From Dec 6th, it will not be possible to sign up for the free edition. In a statement to the Wall Street Journal, Google's senior vice president in charge of Google Apps said Google wants to provide small businesses that use the free version of the software with dedicated customer support — something only paying customers currently get. 'We're not serving them well,' he said of the free users." Google's blog post notes that "this change has no impact on our existing customers, including those using the free version."
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Google Axes Free Google Apps For Businesses

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 07, 2012 @10:35AM (#42214763)

    We are now charging you more...

  • by GauteL ( 29207 ) on Friday December 07, 2012 @10:58AM (#42214953)

    I just don't understand why they have to blatantly lie like that. There is nothing wrong which changing your pricing strategies to improve your income. Google even retained the free service for existing users, so it can hardly be seen as a bait and switch

    If they had said; "we believe the service is good value at $$ and providing the free service doesn't provide us with enough revenue", I would have completely understood it. Weasel speak was utterly unnecessary in this case and makes me wonder if some people are just so accustomed to lying that they can't avoid it.

  • Corporate Speak (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DaMattster ( 977781 ) on Friday December 07, 2012 @11:50AM (#42215637)
    Ookay, this sounds like corporate speak. Translation: This is costing us more money than we are earning through ad-based revenue so we have to transition to a non-free model. This has absolutely zilch to do with providing adequate customer support.
  • by jest3r ( 458429 ) on Friday December 07, 2012 @12:05PM (#42215845)

    As a web designer I have always recommended customers use Google Apps for their Email instead of the web host, CPanel or whatever.

    Lots of benefits.
    - Apps interface way better than whatever most typical hosts offer.
    - If the host goes offline your email still works.
    - Great mobile support.
    - List goes on.

    However most small businesses spend maybe $10-$15 / month on web hosting (Dreamhost, GoDaddy, most Cpanel hosts etc..).
    And they might have 5-10 email accounts which you can always setup free at the host.

    So $50/year per email account on Google Apps is suddenly WAY OUT OF THE BALLPARK. A small busness with 10 email accounts would be paying Google $500 / year for Email .. and only $120 / year for Web Hosting which always includes Email (albeit not as good).

    It should be ~ $50 / year for a Google Apps account that supports 10 users ... that is market bearable for a small business who's pricing expectations are set by the shared hosting company.

"For the man who has everything... Penicillin." -- F. Borquin