They're going to try to unify lots of different benefits under a single, high-value subscription. The storage plans and priority support are just the first benefit they've tied to the subscription.
> In addition to access to experts, the company also promises to provide subscribers with other benefits. Google One’s director Larissa Fontaine told me that those could include discounts on hotels you find in Google Search, preferred rates for other Google services or credits on Google Play. “We hope to build those out over time,” she noted.
That would make more sense as to why they're "rebranding" these plans an not just updating Google Drive's pricing plans. "Google One" isn't a single product, it's a single subscription across many products, just like Amazon Prime.
Of course, I could be wrong.
It does seem like a weird way to launch the subscription if that's what they're trying to do, since the announcement goes deep into the weeds of storage. And the low-end plans seem much too cheap to be able to add meaningful benefits to in the future.
Even the idea of multiple tiers of the subscription might be too complicated. One of the nice things about Prime is that although it's expensive, there's only one option.
Seeing as this is Google we're talking about, I could imagine this new subscription will have incredible amounts of churn in branding, pricing and benefits along the way, and probably end up as a confusing mess in the minds of customers. Amazon's Prime took a very different route. It started out as a very clear subscription service for cheaper shipping, and then added more and more benefits as time went on. These days it's a little confusing, but it didn't start that way. If Google already can't get the messaging to be clear, it doesn't bode well for them adding lots of orthogonal benefits in the future and keeping it all sane.
I bet we'll see a Stratechery article about Google One in the context of Amazon Prime soon.
This makes me sad, as it's my primary gripe with Amazon Prime. The only Prime service I actually use is free 2-day shipping. But they keep lumping more and more stuff in there -- video streaming, movies, photos, music, etc -- and the price keeps going up. Sooner or later it's not going to be worth the free 2-day shipping and I'm going to have to go back to paying for shipping and waiting around for stuff to arrive.
I'd be very sad if Google decided to emulate this :(
Consider Newspaper subscriptions. Would you rather separately pay $X/month to New York Times, WashingtonPost, The Atlantic, The Economist, etc just to read a few articles, or would you rather pay $X/mo to Texture or a Spotify-for-News, and then have access to every newspaper, friction and worry free?
I'm an Amazon Prime customer and I love it. Not just for the delivery, but also for the video, Amazon Fresh, and pretty much everything else.
When the price of the bundle exceeds greatly the price of everything else, I might start to be concerned.
But in general, I find unbundled stuff more expensive.
Besides, bundling usually means someone down the pipeline -- usially the producers -- are getting royally screwed.
For ad-driven sites, it becomes crucial to keep viewers engaged as often and as long as possible. Every second spent on Facebook is another shot at an ad impression, every video on YouTube another chance for a pre-roll ad. Cue Facebook's notification spam and YouTube's autoplay.
In a bundled service, the incentives shift. The provider's revenue will stay mostly constant, as long as they can demonstrate enough value for me to maintain the subscription. I might still get the good parts (next episode in a series autoplays), but I'll be spared the clickbaity follow-up video that autoplays because there wasn't any other related item.
I’m looking forward to reading whatever Ben Thompson (stratechery.com) has to say on the undelying business model implications
You can already pay for that for Gmail. You have been able to for years.
"we never collect or use data from G Suite services for any advertising purposes" https://gsuite.google.com/security/
I am not convinced this can happen. It seems that ads is the only form of micro payment that really works at scale.
However, I love Google Products. Photos is awesome. Inbox makes my mail manageable, etc.
I am sadly probably in a minority, but I would pay a good price to have all these products without any ad targeting.
Ad revenue at Google / Facebook scale is a magic money box. In that they can tell Wall Street (and deliver) ever increasing monetization per user.
Once they start directly charging users, they can't increase that invisibly via "better" ad tech anymore. Any increase is directly passed on to the consumer. AND ceiling just became users * subscription fee.
The market's a lot smaller, but it looks a lot like the same information asymmetry that led to more and more complicated instruments being created and sold (in what was at its base a game of trying to push leverage).
I would be curious to know how many people are subscribed to this service.
It’s also hard to know what "Google" means from its name. And "Windows". And "Bing". And "Facebook", "Twitter", "WhatsApp", "Amazon", "Yelp", "Pocket", "Chrome", "Firefox", "Safari", "Uber", "Steam", and many more.
From Webster's: "a sharp shrill bark or cry (as of a dog or turkey)"
Getting one of these phones in the US comes with other risks as well since your importing g from China. No warranty for one. Little you can do if the phone is delivered to you in some defective state. I only have full 3G coverage with AT&T. That said other experiences I've read on Xioami's phones have been largely positive. Really cannot stress how amazing of a deal the MI A1 is. Feels like a spiritual successor to the Nexus line.
You're thinking of Android Go. Android One is for phones, not made by Google, that receive guaranteed OS and security updates. All of Nokia's phones are Android One phones.
Interesting point !
I already see Youtube Red as a very high value bundle : no ads on Youtube, offline mode, picture in picture AND that's only on top of Play Music for the same price as any other music service. All of this is sadly region limited though.
It never occurred to me that the champion of bundling is Amazon Prime.
It will be interesting to see how Google moves in this direction.
Storage is a cheap benefit to provide for the average user who won't use it all. YouTube Red is already $9.99 - just add the 2TB Drive option for free and starting selling everyone on the Google One branding. Please don't screw this up?
Not only that, but they'll have to decide where the borders of the subscription are—is YouTube a separate entity, and thus should keep it's own subscription model? or is it too valuable and thus should be part of Google One? Either direction will have complexity issues, either in continuing to have too many different subscriptions, or in trying to capture value with too many orthogonal benefits in a single pricing system.
I can easily see something similar happening with youtube red for example. Youtube free, Youtube 'one' & Youtube red.
You would also be getting Google Play Music since its bundled with Red.
Case in point, the Hacker News title was renamed to be "more clear" to "Google is rebranding storage plans as 'Google One'", totally missing the point.
By contrast, every Amazon service I've dealt with has been either explicitly experimental (and not "experimental" in the Google sense, but something that actually seems like a distinct trial run) or has lasted for years at a minimum.
"Amazon Killing Off its $60/Year Plan for Unlimited Storage"
"Amazon is killing off its Music Storage subscription service"
"Amazon to discontinue Fresh delivery in some states"
"Amazon is shutting down its 'Underground Actually Free' program"
"Amazon Will Discontinue Its Vendor Express Platform"