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Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. His business interests include a diverse range of industries from manufacturing to property to technology. As a technology commentator he has a broad presence both in the traditional media and extensively online. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

More about Ben here.

6 responses to “Free Sometimes Comes at a Huge Cost”

  1. Josh Rosen

    With Google making the billions it does off free services, I don’t see how you could say they don’t have a vested interest in maintaining service quality and adding features.

  2. Josh Rosen

    Was just thinking my previous comment might have been a bit harsh.. you brought up a lot of interesting points which got me thinking 🙂

  3. schultzter

    I agree entirely. I’ve always said you get what you pay for and if you pay nothing don’t expect much! Although I feel like I’m paying for GMail since I get ads (thankfully relevant, sometimes useful). I don’t expect much from other no-subscription, ad-free services.

  4. Mike Frichol

    Good article – I agree – it’s all about setting appropriate expectations for free services and products. There are also forums, blogs and other online sources to help get problems resolved. It’s a trade-off – so far I’m very happy with the free services and products I use and the support is okay if you’re wiling to do some digging and work yourself.

  5. Julian

    Good post. People and customers often do ignore the great lengths and cost that SaaS providers need to go to, to ensure reliability and simplicity on the consumer end.

    Free to consumer normally means a ‘low inertia’ business behind the scenes. Low inertia means the business has invested greatly in processes, automation and systems as well and robust infrastructure.

    There is cost in providing ‘free’ and it’s substantial. Somebody has to wear the cost somewhere.

  6. Suzanne Kendrick

    Having had a very bad day yesterday with gmail down and up and up and down I was having a wonder about my commitment to the Cloud. Something wierd seems to be going on again this morning. Grrr – now where I meant to be today? Would be good if I could access my Google Calendar….