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Google’s baffling business model

My wife and I are among Google’s best customers.

I have long been ‘in’ the Google ecosystem. I have used Android phones since Nokia died, and I have several Google Homes, a Google Home Hub, Google Stadia (which I love), and YouTube Premium (which includes YouTube Music). Currently I have a Pixel 5, and my wife has a Pixel 4. Oh, and our phones use Google Fi.

We are among Google’s best customers.

But next July, photos my wife takes on her real camera will count towards her Google storage allowance. Next July, all new Google Docs and Google Sheets that we create, will count against out Google storage allowance. When our Pixel phones inevitably need replacing, the gigabytes of photos and videos we take on vacations will all count towards our storage allowance.

The solution is obvious: Buy Google One storage. I already have some for a UK account, but with the closure of Google Photos’ perks, we obviously started looking around.

In summary, Google are crazy. For just storage, nothing else, it is more expensive than subscribing to Microsoft’s top-of-the-line Office 365 subscription. That Office 365 subscription gives around 6Tb of storage space (1Tb each for up to six people). If I have a lot of photos, it is better for me to subscribe to Microsoft Office 365, than it is to buy Google’s over-priced storage. And with Office I get the full Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc. without really paying anything at all.

Google Docs does not compare to Microsoft Word. Especially if you have ever tried to write something with citations, or create a document with multiple tables of contents, or basically anything more than Notepad can do.

But how did we get here? Google made Gmail popular by offering people a then-cavernous 1Gb of storage. People flocked from the poor storage choices of Yahoo and Hotmail.

And now Google are being the penny pinchers.

I had already moved to Microsoft Edge, because of its work and personal profiles, its cross-platform behavior, and its fun new features, like “Collections”. And now Google is positively pushing me into Microsoft’s arms.

If I am going to be friendly with Microsoft, perhaps I will get an Xbox Game Pass, and redirect the $10 per month on Stadia Pro?

If only Microsoft made Windows for phones, and I would probably jump off of the Google Hardware bandwagon too. Microsoft’s Continuum and CShell looked set to be the future, back when Microsoft had aspirations, but apparently no way of implementing them.

Come on Google. What is your motivation and plan, here? I genuinely think you’ll lose customers to Microsoft (and Amazon), before you gain a significant revenue-stream from over-priced Google One.

P.S. If you do have any device with Chrome (or Edge!) on it, check out Outcasters on Google Stadia – it’s really good and free to try.

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