Microsoft is overcharging
Even at "free," who in their right mind would trust a Microsoft service to keep files safe? They even admit that it's Windows!
Google has begun charging users for additional storage once they fill their free allowance, according to a blog post by one of the company's lead software engineers. Price plans start from $20 a year for an extra 6GB and run to $500 a year for 250GB. Google account holders can buy storage here. The engineer, Ryan Aquino, …
$500 a year for 250 GB? I can get a 1TB NAS box for about that price. Or a 250GB USB/Firewire drive plus a night in a downtown London hotel. They have got to be out of their minds. I'm starting an online storage business. Any operation that pays for itself instantly and keeps the profits flowing is a great business model. And I don't even have an MBA.
Go on, start your own online storage business.
About 2 seconds into the planning stage, you will find out that you will have to:
a) Pay huge bandwidth bills to your *multiple* commercial ISPs
b) Have at least one more drive in mirror RAID in addition to the one you indent on “sharing” for data redundancy
c) Have multiple sites, with multiple servers and ISP links, again, for redundancy
d) Not to mention the servers, the “data room” rental/purchase price
e) Did I mention the lawyers?
The actual list will be quite extensive, I assure you.
You do not need an MBA; you need a cycling proficiency certificate!
So according the the title of the article, the pioneer in decent, free mailbox and storage size on the internet, will now "start charging for storage".
Er, no - if I am reading the terms correctly, Google will now allow you a paid upgrade from the large storage they have always offered, which remains free. This strikes me as an additional service, rather than a reduction of service or charging for something that was once free. Pathetic attempt at a muckraking headline, El Reg writers...
And it appears that someone in this thread has mistaken "harddrive" for "storage"...the two are not synonomous except under the most simple of uses...
I agree with the above, they're hardly downgrading a service, they're offering an additional benefit should you require it... previously if you managed to fill the large space allowance, granted for free, you were stuck.. now you can increase it - i personally see this as a good move.
As for the plan of starting your own online storage system, good luck - if only it were that simple!!! I'd be interested to hear the details of your complex backup and data redundancy package... i mean ensuring against failing hard drives on both live and backup system can't be cheap...