In 2020, G Suite become part of mass reorganisation as Google Workspace of the company’s apps for ‘work in future. Google has finally decided to get rid of the G Suite legacy free edition.
In an email to the administrators, Google said “it will now transfer all remaining users to an upgraded version of Google Workspace subscription which is usage-based”. Users can retain access by switching to a paid Google workspace plan by purchasing Rs. 125 per month per user plan in India.
Existing G Suite legacy free edition users will have to upgrade to a paid Google Workspace subscription, which is priced differently in various regions. The company has given time till the 1st of June for existing users to upgrade plans. To make the transition easier, Google is providing discounts for the first two months.
Once upgraded, they can use the service free of cost until July 1, 2022. If the users fail to upgrade to a paid subscription by June 1st, the company will automatically upgrade to a premium subscription-based on the features used by the users.
This was a long-time announcement and it’s not clear how many people were using Google Apps. However, there will be more than a few businesses in the transition, it will be no surprise if there were many more individuals, and non-enterprise users impacted.
The paid upgrade will certainly be contentious, but it comes as over the past few years Google has been working hard to streamline its offering for businesses. Integrated Gmail is one of the prime examples while there is a classic hangout to Google Chat conversion.
So, if you have the G Suite legacy free edition, you need to either upgrade to paid Google Workspace subscription or transition to a no-cost option without the premium features like using Gmail with your custom domain and many other features.
The G Suite Legacy free edition will no longer be available from June 1st, 2022.
What’s in the Upgrade?
When opting for the paid Google Workspace subscription, you will access new premium collaboration and security features while continuing to have access to all your favourite features and lastly manage multiple users.
However, if you choose to wait, Google will begin upgrading subscriptions automatically from June 1st, 2022. Also, your Google Workspace subscription will be suspended if you don’t provide your payment information to set up billing. You will no longer have access to core services of workspace such as Gmail, Calendar and Meet after 60 days of suspension.
However, you will not lose access to additional Google services or content you purchased with your legacy edition account, even if you don’t upgrade to a Google workspace subscription.
Premium features with the Google Workspace
Google workspace unlocks 24/7 support and access to other premium collaboration and security features, based on the edition you choose-
Business Starter –
- Storage Doubled- 30 GB of Drive storage provided to securely store over 100 different file types.
- 9% uptime guarantee- Google workspace services being available when you need them.
- Add-on subscription- More subscriptions like Google voice to get a dedicated business phone number
- Enhanced Security- Protect devices and data with endpoint security and data audit logs.
- More Storage- Get 2TB of Drive storage to keep 100 different types of files.
- Larger meeting capacity and enhanced meeting functionality- Up to 150 participants in Google Meet and Drive recording, noise cancellation, polls and more
- Organizational Branding- Custom features like templates in Google Docs, Sheet, Slides, Forms and Sites.
- Enhanced Collaboration- Advanced collaboration with guest access chat rooms, shared drives, document approvals and visitors’ documents sharing.
- More Storage- Get as much storage as you need to securely keep over 100 different file types.
- Big User Base- Add more than 300 users
- Larger Interactive meetings and advanced meeting functionality – capacity of 500 participants in Google Meet with Drive recordings for future purpose, polls, Q&A and live stream meetings within your domain.
- Advance security and compliance controls – Better protects your data, and devices with data loss prevention, data retention and eDiscovery.
- Enhanced Support – Get accelerated response times, intelligent triaging and third-party apps support.
Google Workspace for Education free and paid education-
Qualified educational institutions have the option to remain on a free subscription by transitioning to Google Workspace for educational fundamentals. With this transition, no additional expenses will be incurred and no disruption to any service.
Google Workspace for Non-Profits-
If Non-profit organisations are already using the legacy edition at no cost, they can continue doing so without any change in services.
- Google Workspace for Nonprofits (no charge)
- Business Standard (USD 3/user/month with nonprofit discount)
- Business Plus (USD 5.04/user/month with nonprofit discount)
- Enterprise editions (at 70%+ nonprofit discount)
Choose your Workspace subscription-
Google Workspace offers all core services available in the legacy free edition, such as Gmail, Calendar, Meet and Chat. However, when choosing the upgrade, consider these factors-
- Number of Users- Google Workspace Business edition can have up to 300 users. Enterprise edition offers more than 300 users.
- Features you use – Make sure you choose an edition that includes the features you rely on and use the most.
- Billing- If you upgrade to Google Workspace, you’ll receive your first invoice at the beginning of September 2022 for your august changes.
- Features you’d like to use in future- You want to add some new features to streamline your business and be more productive.
Procedure to upgrade to a paid subscription of Google Workspace
- Sign to the Google Admin Console
- On the Admin Console Home Page, Go to Billing > Get more services
- Click the switch, at the edition you want
- To review the changes > Click Get Started
- Select Payment Method-
- Flexible Plan– No long-term commitment – If you select this plan and a Google Workspace Business edition, billing won’t start until August 1, 2022. Also, the billing grace period does not apply to Enterprise editions.
- Annual Plan– Require a 1-year contract, pay monthly for users committed and add users as needed. Billing starts immediately for this plan.
- Click Checkout
- Enter your billing credentials > Click Place Order.
When you self-upgrade to Google Workspace, you enter billing information during signup. If it is done by Google automatically, after your upgrade you need to set up Google Workspace billing. You have to set up billing before August 1st, 2022. If you don’t, your subscription will be suspended until you set up billing.56
After 60 days of suspension, you will no longer have access to Google Workspace core services such as Gmail, Calendar and Meet. However, you will not lose access to other access to other Google Services like YouTube, Photos and Google Play. To restore your suspend account, make sure to enter a valid form of payment.
How to Activate Google Workspace for Non-Profits-
Navigate to Google (for Nonprofits) and log in with your organisation’s administrative account. Under the Nonprofits tab, Click Get Started.
If your organisation is not using Google Workspace currently and needs to sign up:
- You will be directed to start a 14 days trial of Google Workspace for Nonprofits, where up to 10 users can explore the features of Google workspace.
- Verify that you own your preferred domain.
- Click Activate
If your organization is currently using Google Workspace-
- You will be asked to share your domain so that backend can verify and check the edition of the Google workspace you are using.
- Google will show the Google Workspace offer(s) your organisation is eligible for.
- Follow the steps and click Activate.
Google will review the request within 3 business days. Also, it will send an email if your domain was successfully upgraded or if any additional steps are needed to take to get discounted pricing for Google Workspace Business and Enterprise Editions.
Legacy free edition transition questions-
How does the transition affect the current G Suite legacy-free subscription?
Current G Suite legacy-free subscription and related services will continue to function as they do today until you choose one of these options-
- Upgrade to paid Google Workspace subscription.
- Transfer to the no-cost option without premium Google Workspace features.
- Wait for Google to upgrade you after June 1, 2022
Google recommends you upgrade to a Google Workspace that meets your needs. However, to complete the upgrade and prevent your subscription from being suspended, you will need to enter your billing information before August 1, 2022.
Can users keep their G Suite free subscription?
No, customers with a G Suite legacy-free subscription need to either upgrade to a Google Workspace subscription to keep premium features and the ability to manage multiple users, or they need to choose the no-cost option. Upgrading doesn’t take much time and it’s not disruptive to end-users. To help ease the transition, Google offers deep, region-based discounts on Google Workspace editions starting at a 50% discount for the twelve months after August 1, 2022.
Can users transfer data out of Google?
If users want to move data, their administrator can export the organization’s data and cancel the legacy subscription. User can also export their data (including Workspace and other additional Google services) with Google Takeout. Admin will need to have Google Takeout enabled in the account.
What happens when G Suite legacy free edition account is suspended?
The account suspension will occur on the 1st of August, 2022. In the first 60 days of account suspension, the admin will still be able to access the Admin Console to export data and upgrade.
In account suspension, the user won’t be able to receive or send an email. Without access to Gmail, Google recommends using a different email provider to send and receive email messages, including changing login credentials and authenticating new passwords. If the user wants to retrieve data from additional Google services such as Google Photos, they can export the data including Google Workspace and additional Google Services with Google Takeout.
Will users be charged for Google Workspace if Google upgrades them after June 1st, 2022?
Subscriptions will be put on Flexible Plans and won’t be charged until at least August 1st, 2022. After that, users will be charged every month for each user in the organization. However, monthly charges depend on Google Workspace subscriptions.
Can a user become an admin, if the Administrator isn’t available?
Users can ask Google for becoming an administrator on the account by completing the form provided by Google. Users will be required to verify their domain ownership by adding a TXT record or CNAME record to their domain host. If the domain verification is successful and none of the existing administrator’s objects, the users will be promoted to the super administrator role.
What Happens to the additional Drive Storage user purchased when switched to Google Workspace?
Users will not lose any previously purchased or promotional storage and data will also not be affected by upgrading. Your new storage limits depend on the Google Workspace edition you upgrade to:
- Business Starter- You will automatically get 30 GB of storage per user as part of your upgrade. Any individually purchased storage subscription will automatically be applied to users that purchased the storage, and their data won’t be affected. The amount of purchased storage might not be reflected accurately in photos.google.com or drive.google.com.
- Business Standard- You will automatically get 2TB per user added to pooled storage.
- Business Plus- You will automatically get 5TB per user added to pooled storage.
You will notice that Business Standard and Business Plus storage limits are larger than any promotional or purchased storage so you may no longer need the additional storage. Also, you can cancel your additional purchased storage anytime using the dedicated website.
How to recover the Discover feed after upgrading?
If you stopped getting your Discover feed after you upgraded to Workspace, your admin needs to follow the instruction, in Turn, Search and Assistant on or off for users:
- Sign In to your Google Admin Console
- From the Admin Console Home Page, go to Devices
- On the left of Mobile and endpoints > Settings > Universal settings
- Click Data Access > Google Assistant
- Check the box for Allow assistant for iOS and Android.
Where do I get Help?
If users have any questions, they can reach out at-
Google Workspace Support
Google Workspace Sales (if you have more than 20 users)
To bring cloud services to more enterprises, governments and educational organizations, Google announced the G Suite free edition (formerly called Google Apps). However, Google’s latest official statement says that users of the free edition will have to upgrade to Google Workspace by July 2022 if they want to continue using the services. The above mentioned are the steps to upgrade to Google Workspace and various pricing offered by the company to transition its users hassle-free and streamline their business.
We hope that the given information provides you with an idea and steps taken to upgrade from Google G Suite legacy edition to Google Workspace premium which offers more premium features and enhanced security for its users. The upgrade to Google Workspace gives organisations immediate access to advanced collaboration tools, more storage and improved security.