January 22, 2014
Updated: Many of our readers asked for a list of alternatives, now that LogMeIn is no longer free. Unfortunately, that list isn't very large. Team Viewer does offer a free version of its remote access product. Legally, however, this is only for private use. Businesses are expected to buy commercial licenses. Other alternatives include Jump Desktop, Pocketcloud, and Splashtop. None of those are free, although they are less expensive than LogMeIn. Our initial advice: Find solutions that offer 15- or 30-day trials and see what you think. As originally published: The folks over at LogMeIn didn’t bake a cake to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their popular free remote access product. Instead, they gave their loyal users a parting gift. Going forward, LogMeIn “will be a paid-only offering,” according to a posting on the company’s blog. This change is part of a strategy to offer a “single, premium access product.” Launched in 2004, LogMeIn Free offered easy-to-use, free services to access other computers and files remotely. Premium services were then offered to turn those free users into paying customers. That business model apparently didn't pay off. To continue using remote access, users will now need to purchase a LogMeIn Pro subscription. Normally priced at $99, the service is currently being offered for $49 per year. This introductory price is good for two computers, and only for the first year of your subscription. LogMeIn Free users will have seven days to make their decision. The clock begins the next time they log into the service. For LogMeIn Ignition customers who use the service via an iOS or Android device, the company notes:
While customers who purchased these apps are impacted by this change, we have taken steps to be especially attentive to these customers. LogMeIn Ignition for iPad/iPhone and Android app purchasers will receive significant discounts, as well as generous terms to ease the transition. Details of these offers are being sent to Ignition mobile users this week, both via email and in-product notifications.LogMeIn has every right to change their business practices. Still, they could have rolled out the news a little bit better. For one, they could have given users some lead time. For example, explain that the free service would be going away, effective on a certain date. Second, only a seven day trial, LogMeIn? Not exactly generous in my humble opinion. What are your thoughts?