Microsoft makes across-the-board downgrades to OneDrive storage options, ditches unlimited tiers

Posted:
in General Discussion edited November 2015
Microsoft is making sweeping downgrades to its OneDrive cloud storage services, most notably eliminating unlimited tiers for subscribers to Office 365.




Those users will now be limited to 1 terabyte of storage, the company revealed in a blog post. The company blamed a "small number of users" who were leveraging their space to upload PC backups, DVR recordings, or whole movie collections.

"In some instances, this exceeded 75 TB per user or 14,000 times the average," Microsoft explained. Office 365 subscribers already over the 1 terabyte limit will be able to keep their current storage for another 12 months, or receive a pro-rated refund.

The company is also scaling back its free tier from 15 gigabytes to 5 however, and eliminating an associated 15-gigabyte camera roll bonus. Once changes take effect in early 2016, people who have more than 5 gigabytes uploaded will be able to keep all their files for 12 months, and get a free year of Office 365.

Separately, 100- and 200-gigabyte plans are being eliminated for new users in favor of a 50-gigabyte option costing $1.99 per month, also launching in early 2016. People who are currently subscribed to the 100 or 200 plans will be able to hold onto them.

Apple offers just 5 gigabytes for free on iCloud, but is selling a 50-gigabyte plan for 99 cents per month, and 200 gigabytes for $2.99. A full terabyte is $9.99, exactly $3 more than Microsoft, which bundles in an Office 365 subscription.

Google Drive offers 15 gigabytes for free, or 100 gigabytes for $1.99. Its 1-terabyte plan costs as much as Apple's, but 10-, 20-, and even 30-terabyte options are available, costing up to $299.99 per month.

Dropbox is perhaps the most restrictive of the major cloud services, offering just two plans for individuals: 2 gigabytes for free, or a terabyte at $9.99 per month or $99 per year. People can, however, garner up to 16 gigabytes of free storage through things like referrals.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 54
    Absurd. Microsoft apparently does not want to really be in the cloud business.
  • Reply 2 of 54

    Microsoft shot themselves in the foot with this. They didn't need to offer an unlimited plan when their current plans were good anyway. Their Office 365 Home is a bargain with 5TB for $99 a year and the full version of Office (including Access) thrown in for free.

     

    If they never made the ridiculous offer in the first place they wouldn't suffer the backlash of cancelling it later.

  • Reply 3 of 54
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    I wonder if Apple can exploit this somehow and gain users?
  • Reply 4 of 54
    It was all explained and in fact I knew something like this would have to happen at some point.

    You can't have an unlimited storage device because physics can't be bypassed. 75 TB is a huge amount in anyone's book and if everyone used 75TB then they would run out of space fast.

    This is once again the few ruining it for the many.
  • Reply 5 of 54
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,963member
    sog35 wrote: »
     
    Microsoft shot themselves in the foot with this. They didn't need to offer an unlimited plan when their current plans were good anyway. Their Office 365 Home is a bargain with 5TB for $99 a year and the full version of Office (including Access) thrown in for free.

    If they never made the ridiculous offer in the first place they wouldn't suffer the backlash of cancelling it later.

    That still doesn't explain why they lowered the free tier from 15GB to 5GB.

    Because it's fine for millions of users.
  • Reply 6 of 54
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

     

    Nope.  Microsoft is realizing that you can't make any significant profits with the price structure they were using.  No one can.

     

    Its hilarious that Wall Street clowns thought Microsoft's and Amazon's cloud business would be massive drivers to profits.  HELL NO.  Cloud services is the very defintion of a commodity product.  Its has ZERO value if it isn't tied to a specific device like iCloud is.

     

    Once again Apple is proven right and Wall Street proven wrong.


     

    "Its has ZERO value if it isn't tied to a specific device like iCloud is."

     

    Or if it's tied to a specific service like Office 365, for those use their services cross-platform.  

  • Reply 7 of 54

    75TB does seem like an awful lot of data.



    That said, if your available storage was unlimited it wouldn't be a lot at all. How big were the plans anyway?

     

    Unlimited?

     

    ...I'm sorry, but what were Microsoft expecting exactly? Their users weren't doing anything unreasonable, they were using the product within the expressed terms. This is a complete unforced error on Microsoft's part. They are shooting themselves in the foot because they decided to take hold of a loaded gun and point it squarely at their feet with their finger pressed against the trigger. Their attempt to cop a "golly me, we didn't see that coming" attitude is laughable.

  • Reply 8 of 54
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post



    It was all explained and in fact I knew something like this would have to happen at some point.



    You can't have an unlimited storage device because physics can't be bypassed. 75 TB is a huge amount in anyone's book and if everyone used 75TB then they would run out of space fast.

     

    The cost isn't in storage. The cost is in bandwidth. Look at Azure's download rates... 5 cents/GB. Storage is almost half that, 2.2 cents/GB-Month. So you upload one GB file, it gets downloaded on three devices (work computer, laptop, home computer), you've cost them 15 cents (at retail prices). 75 TB of transfer = $3,750.

     

    This is why they're lowering the free tier.

  • Reply 9 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by EricTheHalfBee View Post

     

    Microsoft shot themselves in the foot with this. They didn't need to offer an unlimited plan when their current plans were good anyway. Their Office 365 Home is a bargain with 5TB for $99 a year and the full version of Office (including Access) thrown in for free.

     

    If they never made the ridiculous offer in the first place they wouldn't suffer the backlash of cancelling it later.




    true on all counts.

  • Reply 10 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cali View Post



    I wonder if Apple can exploit this somehow and gain users?



    They "exploit" it by simply having a superior product.  People continue to realize this and migrate to Apple.

  • Reply 11 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post



    It was all explained and in fact I knew something like this would have to happen at some point.



    You can't have an unlimited storage device because physics can't be bypassed. 75 TB is a huge amount in anyone's book and if everyone used 75TB then they would run out of space fast.



    This is once again the few ruining it for the many.



    Unlimited is unlimited.  Don't offer "unlimited" if you don't want people using the storage.  Maybe they should have advertise "a lot" instead of "unlimited".

  • Reply 12 of 54

    Always people out there that will take advantage of unlimited plans. Always...

  • Reply 13 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Bryant NorCal View Post

     

    Always people out there that will take advantage of unlimited plans. Always...




    As far as I can tell, if I pay Microsoft for an "Unlimited" storage account, and I have 75 petabytes to upload, they better damned well buy some more hard drives, because the contract says "Unlimited", and according to my dictionary, "Unlimited" is more than 75 petabytes.

  • Reply 14 of 54
    You can't have an unlimited storage device because physics can't be bypassed. 75 TB is a huge amount in anyone's book and if everyone used 75TB then they would run out of space fast.

    This is once again the few ruining it for the many.

    unlimited is unlimited. those few were using what they were contracted to use, and at no fault to themselves -- theres nothing wrong w/ wanting to pay for and use unlimited space.

    it was boneheaded of MS to offer it. thats it.
  • Reply 15 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Roake View Post

     



    Unlimited is unlimited.  Don't offer "unlimited" if you don't want people using the storage.  Maybe they should have advertise "a lot" instead of "unlimited".


     

    Exactly.  Microsoft could have said 25TB or 50TB.

     

    But they wanted the benefit of having UNLIMITED STORAGE hype without actually delivering it.  Shameful and pathetic.  But this is par for the course for companies besides Apple.  They are constantly OVER PROMISING and UNDER DELIVERING.

     

    That's why I stick with Apple products.

     

    And there are perfectly reasonable reasons to have 75 TB of storage.  Bluray movies are 50GB.  So if you have over 1,500 movies that would fill 75GB.  Now if you go to 4k home movies that would only be about 1,000 hours of footage.  That may sound like alot but add massive photo collections, music collections, data backups and 75TB is easy to fill.




    What I wonder is how Microsoft is treating that person that actually believed that they meant what they said and trusted their service to safeguard his 75TB of data.  I suspect they are treating him likely a criminal for taking them up on their offer.

  • Reply 16 of 54
    Unlimited is NOT unlimited when it comes to storage space. There is literally a finite amount of room to store stuff. How is this beyond people's understanding.

    If you have a 1TB drive you can literally not stick anything more than 1TB on it. It doesn't matter how big or how many drives MS puts in it will ALWAYS be a finite amount of space.
  • Reply 17 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post



    Unlimited is NOT unlimited when it comes to storage space. There is literally a finite amount of room to store stuff. How is this beyond people's understanding.



    If you have a 1TB drive you can literally not stick anything more than 1TB on it. It doesn't matter how big or how many drives MS puts in it will ALWAYS be a finite amount of space.



    Take your dictionary and look up the word "unlimited".  The problem with your logic is that Microsoft has a dictionary too; there's one built right into Microsoft Word.  And it DOESN'T say "only 50 gigabytes."  Microsoft knew this, and still elected to use the word "Unlimited."  Is there really any part of you that thinks Microsoft, with their huge legal department, did not understand the definition of "Unlimited?"  How is this beyond your understanding?

     

    While abstractly you make the point about "finite" storage, it assumes that Microsoft cannot keep buying storage and bandwidth as people store more.  But it still goes to the same point... if they cannot deliver "Unlimited," then don't advertise it.

     

    Are you saying it's okay to say "Unlimited" when you mean "Actually, pretty damned limited?"  I personally think marketing LIES should get a company penalized a significant portion of their annual income by the FCC.  Might cause a few companies to actually deliver what they promise.

  • Reply 18 of 54
    mrboba1mrboba1 Posts: 267member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lowededwookie View Post



    Unlimited is NOT unlimited when it comes to storage space. There is literally a finite amount of room to store stuff. How is this beyond people's understanding.



    If you have a 1TB drive you can literally not stick anything more than 1TB on it. It doesn't matter how big or how many drives MS puts in it will ALWAYS be a finite amount of space.

    But it is unlimited if you buy something that is unlimited!

     

    To a single user, unlimited means the big business will be able to accommodate anything you throw at it, because they can always scale up, whereas you may not be able to. That's why one would buy an "unlimited" service. Don't try to compare 1 TB for a user to 1 TB to MS (in this case).

     

    It's their own dumb fault for offering that sort of service, not realizing that some would take them for their word!.

     

    If only Microsoft ever had an example where offering unlimited service backfired on the company offering it. They could have avoided the whole mess! But alas, no one has ever regretted offering their customers unlimited service, and then had to backtrack or limit them in some other way.

    Do I need this? /s

  • Reply 19 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 609member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bryant NorCal View Post

     

    Always people out there that will take advantage of unlimited plans. Always...


     

    Then don't offer unlimited plans.  No ones is forcing anyone to offer this.

     

    But these low quality companies like Microsoft like to say unlimited to get hype and make a big splash.




    The sad part is, unlike all the smaller companies like Bitcasa, people actually trusted Microsoft to deliver what they promised.

  • Reply 20 of 54
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,963member
    sog35 wrote: »
    dasanman69 wrote: »
    Because it's fine for millions of users.

    No.  Thats called bait and switch.  

    Many probably went through alot of effort uploading 15GB of data and now they need to decrease it to 5GB.  Pathetic.  This is something Apple would never do.

    How do you know they uploaded that much. The majority were probably using less than 5GB.
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