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Google apps & gmail will no longer be free for small business'

technologyEdward KiledjianComment

The Google blog has stated that the free Google Apps for business option is going away. Until now, a small business with fewer than 10 users could opt for the free version instead of the $50 per user per year business option.

Google says this will be better for individual "who often have to wait to get new features while we make them business-ready" and better for business' "which includes 24/7 phone support for any issue, a 25GB inbox, and a 99.9% uptime guarantee with no scheduled downtime".

Clearly this is a cash grab where Google hopes to coax business users to the pay version and therefore increase income. With the new fee structure, many of its millions of business customers may choose to move to other services, including Microsoft's Office 365 online service (which offers a more familiar Office apps and Outlook experience).

Luckily Google is grand fathering existing users by saying "[...] this change has no impact on our existing customers, including those using the free version."