Google has announced it is closing G Suite free edition. Current users have until May 1, 2022 to upgrade to one of Google’s paid service, or move their mail to another provider.
Google Suite, previously called Google Apps for businesses, was essentially a free version of Google Workspace that allowed you to use your own domain name with Google mail services. It was used by many small businesses with 10 email accounts or less, and by individuals who managed mail under their own domain.
The writing has been on the wall for a very long time. Ten years ago Google advised all Google Suite free edition users to migrate to a paid plan. But even if they allowed no new users to join the service, they continued providing the service for free. That is, until now.
Can someone complain about Google ending a free service? Well, for starters, free mail from Google has been never been really free. (For example, Google has been known to track your purchases in Gmail.)
If you are using a free service for something important, consider what would imply for you or your business if the provider started charging for the service, or closing it. Are Instagram or Facebook your only sales channels? Is LinkedIn your strongest online presence?
If you are not paying for a product or service, then you are the product. At least, have a contingency plan.