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Free is dumb

I love free things, but I’m also aware that it comes with a lot of conditions and clauses.

If you’re getting something for free, you’re paying for it in some other form. This might be in the form of your privacy, a lock-in or a forced upgrade to paid plan in the future.

Google Photos has announced that they are ending their free tier and honestly I’m not surprised. Google Photos exists because of Google Plus, the now dead social network. This network touted their photo storage and features around it as a prime feature. Later on, it was spun out into a separate app and the data from the images was used by Google for building ML models. All okay and expected.

What now? What more can Google gain from offering something for free? If they do no get more users into a paid tier, they might face the same consequence as Google Reader. Considering that alternative, I’m okay with this. As it is I’m on a paid tier of Google One that is shared with Ag as well.

What else are you getting for free and taking it for granted today? Do you have a back up option planned when they charge you for it or if it shuts down? Why not?


PS: In the long term, I expect the last row of my Google One storage to shoot up.

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