Newsletters
Business News for Technology Decision-Makers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Home Business Briefing Mobile Industry News Small Business Tech Trends More Topics...
Vblock™ Systems:
Advanced converged infrastructure
increases productivity & lowers costs.

www.vce.com
Small Business
24/7/365 Network Uptime!
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Google Apps No Longer Free for Small Businesses Signing Up
Google Apps No Longer Free for Small Businesses Signing Up

By Barry Levine
December 7, 2012 12:06PM

Bookmark and Share
Analyst Charles King described the Google Apps for Business pricing plan as a natural evolution of the 'first one is free' market-building strategy. He added that there's "been a great acceptance among smaller businesses" for Google Apps, whereas larger ones tend to have issues with compliance, business processes and security.
 



If you're a small- to medium-size business, you may have gotten accustomed to using free Google Apps. You can continue to do so, but now the "free" part is ending for any new signups, with Google's announcement that it will henceforth charge for businesses with up to 10 accounts.

The Apps suite includes calendars, word processing, presentation graphics, spreadsheets, online storage and branded e-mail, and the service will now be offered to new business customers for $50 per user per year, or $5 per user if on a monthly basis.

On the company's Official Google Enterprise Blog, Google Apps Director of Product Management Clay Bavor wrote Thursday that Google Apps started in 2006 with the idea of helping "businesses and schools work better together without the hassles of managing software and server."

Businesses 'Outgrow' Basic Version

The next year, the company offered a premium edition for businesses at $50 per account per year, with such added business-oriented features as APIs, conference room schedules in Calendar, 10 GB of inbox storage, extended business hours phone support, and mobile access to e-mail on BlackBerry smartphones.

When the premium version was launched, a basic version was kept free for businesses and individuals. Bavor said that "time has shown" that businesses "quickly outgrow" the basic version and want additions like 24/7 customer support or larger inboxes, while consumers have to wait for new features until they were business-ready. In other words, Bavor said, the same package had trouble matching the needs of both markets.

Over the past 12 months, any business with more than 10 users paid $50/person/year, while before 2011, only those with more than 50 users did. Now businesses of all sizes are charged the $50/user/year or $5/user/month rate for Google Apps for Business, which includes 24/7 phone support, a 25 GB inbox and a guaranteed 99.9 percent uptime. Individuals can still have a free, personal account, and a Google Apps for Government is still available at $50/user/year.

The company said existing small-business users can continue without a charge, and Google Apps for Education is still available as a free service for schools. Google Apps has more than 40 million users and, according to The Wall Street Journal, the suite provides about $1 billion in annual revenue for the technology giant.

'Inevitable'

Laura DiDio, an analyst with Information Technology Intelligence Consulting, said Google's move to charge businesses at the lower end of total users "was inevitable," and added that the $50/user/year amount "wasn't a big pain point" for most companies.

However, she noted that, unless "they offer inducements, they'll lose half the companies right away." DiDio said she expects Google is waiting to see the reception, and, if the drop off rate is acceptable, companies will "probably see some additional rate increase" in the not-too-distant future.

Pund-IT analyst Charles King described the pricing plan as "a natural evolution of what you might call the 'first one is free' market-building strategy." He added that there's "been a great acceptance among smaller businesses" for Google Apps, whereas larger ones tend to have issues with compliance rules, business processes, security and functionality in the suite.

At this point, King said, the main question for SMBs is "what's the alternative," given that Microsoft's Office 365 goes for $4 to $20 per user per month.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

Craig:

Posted: 2012-12-08 @ 9:51pm PT
Next up, Chrome.

Jonathan:

Posted: 2012-12-08 @ 7:20am PT
Yeah, $5/user/month still sounds cheap compared to all the alternatives I've found.

Sean:

Posted: 2012-12-08 @ 5:05am PT
The whole idea of using Google Apps is it's free and it can be accessed from anywhere.
It was never because it is better or easier than Microsoft Office suite installed on a local computer. Indeed, running business productivity applications inside of a web browser is so awkward and limited, not to mention it is slower, and you cannot use it without Internet connection (e.g. on an airplane). Now it is no longer free, SMBs really should look for better alternatives. DriveHQ.com has offered cloud IT service to SMBs since 2003. It is a one-stop shop for all core IT services such as file server, email server, FTP server, static web server, online backup, folder synchronization, group file sharing and collaboration with user access control. It has tons of high-end business features all bundled for the same low prices. Our user license costs only $0.6/user/month, why not give it a try?

Ricky:

Posted: 2012-12-07 @ 4:23pm PT
Google Apps still has a free version. Here is the guide on how to get it. Check it out: http://techwalls.com/news/register-free-google-apps-standard-account-single-user/
I don't think Google will kill it soon.

Adrian:

Posted: 2012-12-07 @ 2:57pm PT
The Microsoft alternative to Google Apps is hosted SharePoint that costs about $8/month for unlimited users through vendors such as Apps4Rent...



Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR) is a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information and analysis to the Internet, telecommunications, information services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors. Neustar applies its advanced, secure technologies in location, identification, and evaluation to help its customers promote and protect their businesses. More information is available at www.neustar.biz.


 Small Business
1.   Alibaba Earnings Boost Yahoo
2.   Politics Test Silicon Valley, Russia
3.   Red Hat Unveils OpenShift Marketplace
4.   Clinton Calls for More Tech Training
5.   Data Compilers Peg Consumers


advertisement
Alibaba Earnings Boost Yahoo
Amid modest advertising sale gains.
Average Rating:
Politics Test Silicon Valley, Russia
Financial ties are being slowed down.
Average Rating:
Clinton Calls for More Tech Training
Wants Silicon Valley firms to step up.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Heartbleed Could Cost Millions, Could Have Been Prevented
Early estimates of Heartbleed’s cost to enterprises are running in the millions. The reason: revoking all the SSL certificates the bug exposed will come at a very hefty price. Some say it all could have been avoided.
 
Michaels Says Nearly 3M Credit, Debit Cards Breached
Arts and crafts retail giant Michaels Stores has confirmed that a data breach at its POS terminals from May 2013 to Jan. 2014 may have exposed nearly 3 million customer credit and debit cards.
 
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
The innovative headpiece may find its niche in markets where hands-free access to data can be a big advantage. Glass experiments for doctors are already under way, with some promising results.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Review: Siri-Like Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
With the new Cortana virtual assistant, Windows catches up with Apple's iOS and Google's Android in a major way, taking some of the best parts of Apple's and Google's virtual assistants, with new tools too.
 
With Galaxy S5, Samsung Proves Less Can Be More
Samsung has produced the most formidable rival yet to the iPhone 5s: the Galaxy S5. The device is the fifth edition of the company's successful line of Galaxy S smartphones, and shows less can be more.
 
Facebook Rolls Out Potentially Intrusive Location-Sharing
Looking for friends? Facebook users in the U.S. will soon be able to see which of their friends are nearby, using a smartphone's GPS. Could be a cool feature in some cases, or way too much information.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Business
Home/Top News | Business Briefing | Mobile Industry News | Small Business | Tech Trends | Business Intelligence | Sales & Marketing | Innovation
E-Commerce | CIO Issues | Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.