At the beginning of last month, Microsoft revealed that it would be reducing its cloud storage options in favor of a new, more conservative business model. While every OneDrive monthly subscriber would take a hit to their allotted storage space, it was the unlimited plans that took the greatest hit, dropping to a mere 1TB by the end of 2016. Now, because of a vocal response from the community, Microsoft is taking a step back from its restrictive ideas in favor of its devoted fanbase.
For free subscribers, whose OneDrive space was previously expected to make the plummet from 15GB to an upsetting 5GB, there will now be the option to retain the extra 10 gigs, along with the 15GB camera roll bonus if you have it. All you’ll have to do is opt in here before January 31st, 2016. Unfortunately, this is hardly a solution, since it fails to reconsider constraints being enforced on Microsoft’s paying OneDrive customers.
As an apology, however, Microsoft Group Program Manager Douglas Pierce says that for dissatisfied customers with over 5GB of files stored on a OneDrive server, the company will be offering up a free year of Office 365 Personal, including 1TB of storage. According to his post on UserVoice, those customers will “receive an email with redemption information early next year.” If you’re so upset that you’d rather not use OneDrive at all, Microsoft will offer a “full refund.”
We’ve heard the feedback from our fans. You’ll be able to keep your free storage when the changes happen in 2016. https://t.co/WLxKcCRrQe
— OneDrive (@onedrive) December 11, 2015
Although it’s appreciable that Microsoft would go out of its way to apologize, this is more like a consolation prize than a proper change of heart. For anyone who doesn’t read up on tech news, it’d be virtually impossible to know that you can keep your 15GB of storage. And, for anyone with a higher tiered subscription plan, you’re still losing your storage space, even if Microsoft is sweetening the loss with an extra free year.
All in all, it’s a drab way to make itself look better, but if you’d planned on sticking with OneDrive anyway, you can do so now while still taking advantage of the company that took your options away.