Sunday 30 January 2022

Unable to upgrade Google Apps Legacy to Google Workspace Starter with UK billing

 I had discovered by accident that the old free Google Apps Legacy edition which I've been using since 2013 was being discontinued this year and that I had to upgrade to at least Google Workspace Starter before the end of July this year or potentially lose access to the service.

I have four family members using this, so losing access to email and purchased apps\media would be a big deal, so I had to go through the upgrade process.

The problem was, every time I ran through the upgrade wizard, I was being asked for a US, rather than a UK billing address. I did not have that.

I posted a question on the Google community forums, and having run around in circles for a few days I had my post closed as the duplicate for another question, again with no real answers. 

I came back today to thankfully find an answer. It turns out that at the top of the page where you select you Workspace edition there is a country\currency selection drop down. It looks like this is easily missed as the page in the browser can be displayed slightly scrolled down with this option scrolled off the top:

Here's the post with the answer here.

Now, a small rant. 

I'm very grateful to Google for providing this service for the 9 years or so, and I certainly have no issues paying a fair price for the service. Not at all. It just doesn't seem very competitive to other options out there, so I get the distinct impression Google want the legacy apps account holders to disappear.

List price for Google Workspace Starter is currently about £4.60 per user, per month. So for my family of four, this is £4.60*4*12=£220.80 per year. Compare this against £79.99 for up to 6 users on Microsoft 365 and that is nearly three times the cost. You also only get 30GB on Workspace starter vs M365 family. I also get the latest MS Office desktop apps on M365 family as well...

The only thing that has stopped me moving for now is:

  • Upgrade is free until end of July 2022
  • Upgrade is half price until July 2023
  • You can't move apps\media purchases to a new account
I might be able to justify this July 22-23 at £110.40 for they year, but I will most probably have to move and sacrifice apps\media in 2023.

I'm going to head over to the Google suggestions community page ans suggest that Google create a Workspace Family edition, but I won't hold my breath. The last time I tried, I couldn't register because of some mainteance