Google has said that the introduction of artificial intelligence (AI), as well as new tools, has meant that it has to raise the price of its G Suite productivity package for users around the world.

Google of course introduced Gmail – its first cloud-native productivity app – more than a decade ago now. But since that time it has continuously added new tools and indeed new capabilities to its Office 365 rival. Indeed, G suite currently comprises Gmail, Docs, Calendar, Hangouts and other services.

Google had renamed ‘Google Apps for Work’ as ‘G Suite’ in late 2016 as it sought to offer a uniform solution to both consumers and businesses. That move came after it also rebranded all of its cloud services under the ‘Google Cloud’ banner.

Price rises

And now for the first time ever, Google has admitted in a blog posting that these changes mean it has to raise the prices it charges customers around the world.

“Today, more than four million organizations use G Suite to collaborate efficiently and securely,” stated David Thacker, VP of product management. “Over the last ten years, G Suite has grown to provide more tools, functionality and value to help businesses transform the way they work. The one thing that hasn’t changed over this time is price.”

“Today, we are announcing two incremental list price updates to reflect this value,” wrote Thacker.

From 2 April, the G Suite Basic Edition will increase by $1 (from $5 to $6 per user/month or £4.63 per month) and G Suite Business Edition will increase by $2 (from $10 to $12 per user/month or £9.26 per month).

“These increases will apply globally with local market adjustments for certain regions,” said Thacker. “Pricing for G Suite Enterprise Edition customers will not change.”

Thacker said that those customers that licences G Suite through a reseller, should hear from these partners directly regarding the new pricing, or they can reach out proactively.

“We are grateful for the many businesses that use G Suite to empower their teams to work collaboratively, and we remain committed to expanding its functionality to help our customers succeed,” he concluded.

Google of course is competing directly with Microsoft here.

Office 365 for personal use is £5.99 per month, whereas Office 365 Business costs £7.90 per month.

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Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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