There’s an old maxim that there’s no such thing as a free lunch, meaning that anything which appears to be free will have a hidden cost somewhere.

In the tech sector, ‘free’ services generally operate using one of two different business models. The first is ad-funded, where – as the more recently-coined saying has it – you’re the product, not the customer. Some cheat the system by using ad-blockers, but most of us recognize that someone has to pay the bills, and accept exposure to ads as fair exchange for the benefit we receive.

The other model is the upsell, where you get a basic service free of charge but the company hopes to persuade you to pay for access to more features or storage. This again can be fair enough, but one company has just taken a particularly underhand approach to this …


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Author: Ben Lovejoy

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