Today’s the day you’ll probably have to start paying for iCloud storage, folks — if you’re a former MobileMe subscriber, anyway. After giving us 25GB of iCloud storage absolutely free for two years, Apple has now ended the offer and dropped all non-paying iCloud users down to the basic 5GB plan.
If you need more than that, you’ll have to sign up for a subscription from today.
If you were a MobileMe customer enticed to join the iCloud by Apple’s offer of 20GB of free storage, get ready to pony up for more: Apple is emailing people telling them to prepare to start paying for iCloud storage come September 20th.
The cloud storage wars continue with a new tweet from Microsoft’s SkyDrive Twitter account. The service, typically offering seven gigabytes of online storage for free, just made an offer Apple’s jilted MobileMe members might not be able to refuse.
In a tweet today, @SkyDrive offered anyone who could forward the Apple downgrade email to a special SkyDrive email address would receive an extra 15GB of Microsoft’s own cloud storage system for one year for free.
Remember MobileMe? When Apple transitioned to iCloud, MobileMe users with paid plans were coaxed over with 20GB of complimentary storage. Apple had originally planned to take the free gigabytes away on September 30th, 2012, but the deadline got pushed back another year.
In an email to affected customers today, Apple reminds everyone that the free storage promotion comes to an actual end this year on September 30th.
“When it expires, your iCloud storage will be automatically adjusted to the free 5 GB plan,” explains Apple. “If you exceed your storage plan on September 30, 2013, iCloud Backup, Documents in the Cloud, and iCloud Mail will temporarily stop working.”
If you need more storage than 5GB, you can upgrade your iCloud plan now.
Before the disastrous launch of Apple Maps, one of Apple’s biggest failures of all-time was the launch of MobileMe. Apple set a group of engineers out to rebrand .Mac and create a new cloud-based product that totally fell over the night it launched.
Steve Jobs famously met with the entire MobileMe team in the campus auditorium and fired the manger of the project on the spot. Then he told everyone, “you’ve tarnished Apple’s reputation … You should hate each other for having let each other down.” It was one of Steve Jobs’ most famous tough-leader moments, but according to one insider, Steve should have been yelling at himself because the MobileMe launch failure was really his fault.
Cult of Mac received an email today with some exciting news: Apple is extending the special offer of extra iCloud storage for all MobileMe customers who haven’t made the transition, yet. The extra upgrade was supposed to expire on September 30th of this year, but will now expire in 2013 on the same date.
When Apple was doing its damnedest to kick people out of MobileMe in June this year and get them to use iCloud instead, one of the incentives they gave the soon-to-be disposessed was a free offer that former MobileMe members would get 20GB of iCloud storage gratis, instead of the 5GB Apple gives the rest of us suckers. But it was only for a limited time, until September 30, 2012.
Looks like Apple may have extended their offer, though. Some iCloud usersare now noticing that they’ve got 25GB of iCloud storage to play around with until September 30, 2050, when their free 20GB should have been snatched away from them yesterday. Even more interesting is that some non-MobileMe users are seeing the same deal, and have found themselves getting a free 20GB bump in storage.
Ex-MobileMe customers must now pay to enjoy their existing 25GB iCloud plans.
When Apple launched iCloud last year, it killed off MobileMe and provided paid subscribers with 20GB of free iCloud storage when they migrated to the new service. Most of us have been using that storage to back up our iOS devices, but like most good things, it’s coming to an end. The company has now begun emailing previous MobileMe customers to inform them that their free storage will be no more come September 30.
I don’t use iCloud too intensively, mostly because I’d have to pay for extra storage and I already got 50GB on Dropbox. But if I were an Apple employee I’d probably use it until the wheels fall off because now Apple is giving all of their employees a free 50GB upgrade for their iCloud strorage accounts.
Along with today’s launch of iOS 6 Beta 3, Apple has started to roll out iCloud.com email addresses to developers. When iOS users signed up for iCloud in the past they received an email address @me.com. Now that MobileMe has been shut down, Apple is starting to transition over to @iCloud.com email addresses.