The solution for people with legacy G Suite accounts was finally launched. After initially threatening to shut down free G Suite accounts if users didn't start paying for the service, Google has completely backed off. Once users jump through some sign-up hoops, they will be able to continue using their old accounts. You will be able to keep your email address.
The saga so far, if you haven't been paying attention, is that there is a custom-domain user account service called "G Suite". From 2006 to 2012 families were offered free custom domain Google accounts to have an online identity.
The small group of long-time users was technically getting a paid service for free when the bean counter at Google noticed it. The people who signed up for the Legacy G Suite were told to pay up or lose their account in January. Users were told to start paying business rates for workspace or face an account shutdown.
A week later, after the inevitable public outcry, Google relented somewhat and said vaguely that it would eventually provide an option for you to move your non-paid content and most of your data to a no-cost option. The new option won't include premium features like custom email, so if you want to use it, you'd have to stop hosting your email with Google. These users were allowed to flap in the wind for six months without any further information.
How to save your account.
In May, they were told what would happen to their accounts. For individuals and families who use their account for non-commercial purposes, you can opt out of the transition to the free version of G Suite. Businesses are still expected to pay for workspace suite, so you need to confirm that your G account is for personal use. If you started paying for workspace because of the January announcement, you should contact support.
The biggest news from this announcement is that people's custom email won't be taken away. If you keep your purchases and data, you can continue using your custom domain with Gmail, retain access to no-cost Google services, and keep your purchases and data.
The deadline to opt out of an account shutdown is in June of 2022. If you don't have a card on file and don't opt out, your account will be shut down on August 1
The billing without explicit user consent is one of thewilder parts of the story. If you don't pay attention to the tech news scene, you could be charged without your consent or your account could suddenly stop working.
For a company that wants users to store vast amounts of data on its server, playing games like this is odd. It came to a reasonable conclusion.
The story was first published on Ars Technica.