Say goodbye to that long, hard-to-remember and unprofessional Gmail address; Google is testing a $2-a-month service that lets you ditch your @Gmail addresses for custom addresses. However, custom Gmail addresses are nothing new for Google Apps for Work customers, and for just $3 a month more more (or $2.16 on annual plans) you get many more advanced features in addition to the custom addresses. In other words, Google Apps for Work plans make more sense than the new paid "Gmail for work" service for most businesses.
The news was originally reported by GSMArena.com, which posted a screenshot of the new offering on a Google Web page. CIO.com later confirmed the offering with Google, and the company shared the following comment
"We know that your first choice of username probably wasn't firstname.lastname@example.org, which is why we're experimenting with scalable ways to provide other options. This is just a test though, and we haven't made any decisions for the long term."
The spokesperson declined to comment on the specific types of users Google hopes to target with Gmail custom addresses. Some small businesses on tight budgets that have no interest or use for the IT support, additional storage and security features that come at a slight premium with Google for Work may be attracted to the new offering, because $2 a month for a Gmail account with your domain of choice (assuming it's available) is a reasonable deal.
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