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OneDrive irks users by reducing free cloud storage from 15GB to 5GB

OneDrive irks users by reducing free cloud storage from 15GB to 5GB

by AshwinNovember 3, 2015

Microsoft has just announced some important news, and let me get this out of the way, it’s bad news.

Microsoft OneDrive

The Redmond company has cut down on the free cloud storage it offers.

Yes, this affects existing users as well. So anyone who had more than 5GB of storage space, in their account is going to be seriously disappointed. The promotional free 15 GB camera roll storage bonus, which the company offered will also be discontinued. This is just horrible news, but don’t worry, if you have had data beyond the 5GB limit, they won’t be erased just yet. Microsoft is allowing users a year’s time to download the data, after which the data will be deleted.

The Redmond company’s explanation for the move is just downright ridiculous. Microsoft says that it found that users are backing up their entire PC’s data, or their movie collections to the cloud storage’s servers. The nerve of some people, right? Sarcasm aside, the company reports that these backups sized up to “75 TB per user or 14,000 times the average”.

Interestingly, the users which the Redmond company says “misused” the unlimited cloud storage option were Office 365 subscribers.

So, basically Microsoft wants to play the fair usage card here, to ensure that all users get to use the service. Obviously, it is also trying to cut down on its server costs as well.

Office 365 subscribers are in for some even more bad news. OneDrive will no longer allow unlimited storage, and instead limit the amount to just 1TB. This applies to Office 365 Home, Personal, or University subscribers.

The 100 GB and 200 GB premium storage plans, have been killed for new users, but existing users aren’t effected. New users will instead be offered a 50 GB plan for $1.99 per month.

On the bright side, free users who have over 5GB of data stored in their account, get a really cool bonus. You will be able to claim a free 1-year subscription to Office 365 Personal. I’d recommend reading the official FAQ for more details.

All of these changes will come into effect in early 2016, again no exact ETA was given.

So it goes without saying that, as far as the cloud storage competition goes, Microsoft seems to have shot itself in the foot. And if you are looking for a good alternative to OneDrive, I’d recommend giving Google Drive a shot, as the Mountain View company offers three times what Microsoft does. Google Drive gives all users 15GB of free cloud storage,