The MSMEs industry in India has several concerns regarding Google’s latest policy changes. The CEO of Synersoft Technologies, Vishal Prakash Shah, has sent an open letter to Google’s Apex Executive–Sanjay Gupta, Amit Kumar, Mayoori Kango and the product team of Google India Private Limited.
Besides that, its addressed to Competition Commission of India, Ministry of MSMEs, IT & Broadcasting, Science & Technology, Industry & Commerce, and Finance, has uncovered certain monoplilistic and unfair business practices by Google India.
“What I have witnessed in the last four months has shattered my fandom for Google. It is about shifting gears from empathy to apathy. It is about bluntly executing unfair, coercive, and monopolistic trade practices in Indian markets, ironically harming the Indian MSMEs the most on their path to recovery. Such an arbitrary policy change will force the Indian MSMEs to pay an additional Rs 1500 Cr to Rs 5000 Cr yearly. The net present value of such additional yearly outflow could be between INR 15000 Cr to 50000 Cr.” wrote Vishal Shah, CEO, Synersoft.
According to this policy change, Indian MSMEs will be forced to pay an additional Rs 1500-5000 crore yearly. As Google announced rebranding G-Suite to Google Workspace with specific policy changes which states additional 100 GB storage is no longer available as they need to fit the “Business Standard” category, which has a minimum storage of 2 TB and costs Rs 10,100 per year per user.
Google further stated that if a business needs more than 30 GB storage in a single account, they must upgrade all the accounts to 2 TB storage which led them to pay 400 per cent higher price. Additionally, Google has raised the exit barrier, which has made it more difficult for businesses to transfer their data to a different service provider.
“Imagine the situation. If I did not agree to upgrade all accounts, the space would be immediately shrunk back to 30 GB from 130 GB, stopping my business. In today’s time, business stops as emails stop. It is a pressure point to force me to upgrade to 2 TB each for all the users,” the letter read.
Dear Google, this is not ok
Shah in his open letter states: “This policy change will have a huge negative impact on MSMEs sector. These additional changes may lead to downfall of many companies in MSMEs sector. Google’s exit barrier has caused further problems for us if we switch to a new service provider. As stated in my open letter, MSMEs are the backbone of our country. As we manage and flourish businesses with scarce resources and contribute significantly to the GDP of our country.”
Shah in his open letter suggests Google to rationalise policies by lowering the exit barrier or selling something that customers need. “Introduce additional storage space options in the “Business Starter” category. It is unfair to charge the customers what they will not use. Or revoke the policy forcing upgrade for all users in case one user needs more storage. It is a coercive practice to force the customers to upgrade for all users when the upgrade requirement is only for one user. If you don’t want to do the above, cooperate with your customers who want to migrate. It is monopolistic to keep a high exit barrier,”