Time O’The Signs

Via gizmodo.com, and email a couple of webbased service pricing changes that affect me came to light this week.

Mozy.com is cutting it’s unlimited service to a tiered pricing system. There’s a couple of things that suck about this, firstly a service that was costing me in the region of £3 per month, and I was backing up 350GB too was now going to cost me over £22, and secondly they only gave half a month’s notice in which to decide and either migrate your data or pay up.

Now it took me the best part of a month to back up my data in the first place with Mozy.
I’m now in the process of backing up to Carbonite which will cost £5 a month for unlimited backups.

I can see that an unlimited model can be unsustainable, you will always end up with some people abusing it, but with that sort of offer you are playing the averages game, assuming that most won’t and so are covering the costs of those who will.
Why they jumped the pricing up quite so much I do not know. They are going to lose customers in great swathes.
They cited trying to make customers more aware of the data they are backing up, but surely this defeats the set it and forget it motto that they use to sell the product in the first place.

I’m curious why they opted for a model which costs users so steeply. Switich to Carbonite has nearly doubled my cost of back up but is still a negligible cost for an offsite backup for me, where as Mozy’s new model was a hike I couldn’t swallow.

Last.fm is the other network based service that is changing it’s pricing model. Now wanting users to have premium accounts in order to stream to devices.
I’ve got no issue with a great service like Last.fm trying to have a workable long term model, but I think this change is lacking in a couple of ways.
I use a Sonos S5 for my music needs at home, and often stream Last.FM via it, in fact far more than I used to on my computer. Thru Last.fm I discovered new artists based on artists I already liked or by listening to Last.fm ‘radio’ stations based on a tag. If I liked a artist enough I’d go and buy their album.
So here’s a few thoughts, shouldn’t the record companies be paying Last.fm a subscription fee to keep playing artists on their label and enabling new listeners to find their artists.
Also now, I can listen to Last.fm for free on my computer and even put that thru a line out into my Sonos to get the same audio quality, but I can’t use my Sonos S5 to listen to last.fm directly without paying £3 a month.
Maybe they should move to an ad supports free version like Spotify and premium users get no ads.
My issue is that for £3 a month, I get the same service I’ve had for free for years, nothing extra as far as I can see, no exclusive offers, or even the option to choose which artist’s album I want to listen to and listening to in it’s entirety, no I get to listen to a random selection of songs based on one criteria I specify.
At which point I have to question, do I pay £3 for discovering music, or do I pay £10 for spotify and then get the option to listen to albums I want to hear and be able to download them for offline playing on my iPhone?
Last.FM I’m an advocate of yours, I want you to succeed, I want to support you, but you’re not offering me anything that I can’t get for free. Innovate to survive, please!

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