Internet giant Google is to stop free access to its software for businesses.
The company announced that new business customers will no longer be able to opt for a free version of its software including Gmail and Google Drive. Instead, they will have to pay £33 a year.
“When we launched the premium business version we kept our free, basic version as well,” said Clay Bavor, director of product management at Google Apps. “Both businesses and individuals signed up for this version, but time has shown that in practice, the experience isn’t quite right for either group.
“Businesses quickly outgrow the basic version and want things like 24/7 customer support and larger inboxes. Similarly, consumers often have to wait to get new features while we make them business ready.”
Google said the change will no impact to existing customers, including those using the free version. Individuals signing up to Google services will not have to pay.
“With focus we’ll be able to do even more for our business customers,” Bavor added.