A little over a year ago, Microsoft upped the ante in the storage wars by announcing that Office 365 Home and Personal subscribers would get unlimited cloud storage on OneDrive as part of their subscription. In a recent blog post, the company has now back-tracked on that promise. It turns out that if you offer unlimited storage, some people actually expect unlimited storage.
Since we started to roll out unlimited cloud storage to Office 365 consumer subscribers, a small number of users backed up numerous PCs and stored entire movie collections and DVR recordings. In some instances, this exceeded 75 TB per user or 14,000 times the average.
In the face of “a small number of people” supposedly abusing the privilege, Microsoft has now decided to fix maximum storage for paid users at 1TB. The company is also doing away with its 100GB and 200GB paid plans, replacing them with a single 50GB plan at $1.99 a month (mooted for early 2016).
But wait, there’s more! Also early next year, the free OneDrive storage quota will be cut from 15GB to 5GB, and the 15GB bonus for storing your camera roll on OneDrive will also be discontinued.
Timeline and Reparations
OneDrive users with more than 1TB of data stored will have a one year grace period from when the changes take place, at the end of which they must cut back to below 1TB. Similarly, free users with more than 5GB of data stored will have a year before they must reduce their usage to below 5GB.
- Paying users will be offered pro-rata refunds.
- Free users can redeem a free one-year Office 365 Personal subscription (credit card required), which includes 1TB of OneDrive storage.
First off; how did Microsoft actually identify ‘numerous PC backups’ and ‘large collections of movies and DVR recordings’ as the OneDrive villains? Hmmmm, the implications are a tad worrying.
When these new plans take effect, it’s difficult to see how OneDrive will retain relevancy in what is a highly competitive cloud storage arena.
- View the OneDrive blog announcement in full here: https://blog.onedrive.com/onedrive_changes/
- OneDrive users can check out specific implications here: https://blog.onedrive.com/onedrive_changes_FAQ/