Microsoft has just announced some drastic changes to OneDrive storage in what the company calls "a pursuit of productivity and collaboration." Microsoft will no longer offer unlimited storage to Office 365 Home, Personal, or University subscribers -- instead they will get 1TB of storage. Free OneDrive storage is also being decreased from 15GB to 5GB for all users -- it doesn't matter if you are an existing OneDrive user or new. Here are the details:
- No more unlimited storage for Office 365 Home, Personal, or University subscribers. Starting now, those subscriptions will include 1 TB of OneDrive storage.
- 100 GB and 200 GB paid plans are going away as an option for new users and will be replaced with a 50 GB plan for $1.99 per month in early 2016.
- Free OneDrive storage will decrease from 15 GB to 5 GB for all users, current and new. The 15 GB camera roll storage bonus will also be discontinued. These changes will start rolling out in early 2016.
- If you are an Office 365 consumer subscriber and have stored in excess of 1 TB, you will be notified of this change and will be able to keep your increased storage for at least 12 months.
- If you are an Office 365 consumer subscriber and find that Office 365 no longer meets your needs, a pro-rated refund will be given.
- If you are using more than 5 GB of free storage, you will continue to have access to all files for at least 12 months after these changes go into effect in early 2016. In addition, you can redeem a free one-year Office 365 Personal subscription, which includes 1 TB of OneDrive storage.
- Current customers of standalone OneDrive storage plans (such as a 100 or 200 GB plans) are not affected by these changes.
Over the past year, Microsoft has touted OneDrive as the superior alternative to Dropbox, Google Drive, and other storage services, even going as far as offering extra storage space for free just for using the service. This made OneDrive appealing over the competition.
. @onedrive Pathetic. Free storage dropping from 30 GB (with camera roll bonus) to 5 GB.Classic bait-and-switch. Borderline fraud.
— Mysterion (@MrMysterion) November 3, 2015
According to Microsoft, a small number of OneDrive users were backing up numerous PCs and stored entire movie collections, taking up a large amount of space, some going over 75 TB of storage. Microsoft wants to "remain focused on delivering high-value productivity and collaboration experiences that benefit the majority of OneDrive users." Seems like Microsoft realized that OneDrive was being taken advantage of when it offered up so much free space and it seems like the majority of subscribers are being punished for the few who were abusing the service.
OneDrive just went from being one of the best cloud storage services to "just another cloud storage service". Such a shame.
— Zac Bowden (@zacbowden) November 3, 2015
Now the question reminds, with this sudden change, how much will OneDrive decrease in popularity and usage? Are you pissed off at this move or do you understand why it had to be done? We've reached out to Microsoft for comment and we'll update this post when we receive a statement.