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Business users of Google Workspace are seeing their monthly subscriptions rise 20%, unless they commit to an annual plan.
While Google is making more noise about how it’s bringing AI tools to Google Workspace, it’s also quietly revamped its pricing structure.
Google Workspace is just the latest name for what’s previously been called G-Suite. It includes Gmail, Google Drive, Google Sheets, and so on. The new pricing affects only business subscribers to the service — the apps remain free for individual and personal use.
As spotted by Ars Technica, the pricing applies immediately to new customers, and existing subscribers will start to see the change from their next billing month, probably April.
The change is that monthly prices are increasing by a fifth, and Google is now also offering an annual version. The increase of the monthly cost per user is:
- Business Starter is now $7.20/month instead of $6
- Business Standard is $14.40/month instead of $12
- Business Plus is $21.60/month instead of $18
Google calls the monthly tier its Flexible Plan, since users can opt out at the end of any month. The company would much rather users committed to a year in advance, so for now, an user who does, will pay at the old rate.
This is not truly an annual subscription in the regular sense, because according to Ars Technica, users who choose it will not then have to pay the yearly fee upfront. Instead, it is a commitment to keep using the services for a year.
So they will be billed each month at the same rate they were before. It’s not possible to move to this new tier and then cancel after a month.
Perhaps more problematic is that business users who move to the new annual scheme, have to specify in advance how big their team will become. Businesses can add more people, and their fee goes up to match, but they cannot reduce the number of users to save money.