Signs hint MobileMe may change to free and paid tiers

Posted on June 4, 2010


Plans by Apple to make MobileMe free as a hedge against Google may have been given some clues by Apple itself through quite changes noted by some subscribers. Existing members have noted their accounts at least temporarily changing over from “individual” to “full member” without any changes of their own. The switches coincide with maintenance Apple had scheduled for the same day.

The labeling implies that, rather than offer a completely free service, Apple may stratify its service into basic and full tiers where free customers still get core services while full members get extras. Features that need large amounts of storage, like iDisk and the photo and video galleries, arethe most likely to be cut from free versions if such a strategy exists.

Apple has lately faced growing criticism for continuing to charge for MobileMe at a time when Google can promise free e-mail, calendars and contacts synchronized online for Android phones where the iPhone is still at least partly reliant on a physical sync without paying $99 per year. The company has recently been working on a North Carolina data center that could help scale such plans in the future.

By Electronista Staff

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