The free account of Google Apps for Business is now discontinued by Google. Last week, Google announced that it is now discontinuing the free signups for the Google Apps for Business. Even I got the email from Google saying that the current users of the free version are not harmed by this, only the new signups are stopped. The premium package comes with perks such as round the clock customer support, migration tools and better uptime, not everyone needs them, particularly ones who use Google Apps simply for email hosting on custom domain. Now that Google Apps is gone, let us look at some of the alternatives we have for hosting our domains for personalized email addresses.
Google Apps for Free Trick
Though it is now discontinued, you can still use Google Apps for Business free of cost. Google App Engine is a platform as a service cloud computing platform for developing and hosting web applications in Google-managed data centers. Basically, it allows developers to host web apps and even websites for free up to a certain level of consumed resources. Fees are charged for additional storage, bandwidth, or instance hours required by the application.
All apps which are hosted on Google App Engine are served on the default *.appspot.com domain, but there is a provision where developers can add custom domains for their apps. Currently, custom domains for Google App Engine are handled through Google Apps. To enable Google App Engine users to add a custom domain without paying for Google Apps for Business, Google has added backdoor through which developers can signup for Google Apps for free if they come from the Google App Engine dashboard. These free accounts are single user, which means that you can register only one email address under it.
How To Use Google Apps For Free Through Google App Engine
- Go to appengine.google.com, sign-in with your Google Account and create a new application.
- Fill in the form with any dummy date and click the “Create Application” button.
- Open the “Dashboard” and click the link that says “Application Settings.”
- On the Application Settings page, scroll down to the Domain Setup section and click the “Add Domain” button.
- This will take you to a page where you can signup for the free edition of Google Apps. Now you can add your custom domain and create a new email address.
If you want more than one email account with your domain name, then you should probably check this one. The next alternative for you is Microsoft Outlook
How To Use Microsoft Outlook With Custom Domains
- Go to domains.live.com and sign-in with your existing Microsoft account. Then, click on Get started link to add your domain name that you want to set the email address up with.
- On the next screen, you’ll be provided with a list of DNS records that you will have to add to your domain. The first is the MX record that is essential for handling your mail traffic. The other is a TXT record used to authenticate your outgoing Outlook emails.
- After you have completed creating all of the DNS records, navigate to “Member Accounts” using the menu on the left of the Windows Live Admin Center. This is where you can create the email address that you want to use. You can setup a maximum of 500 users and there is no hard storage limit.
- It is possible to setup your Outlook Mail on a sub-domain, for instance you can login to your personalized email account by going to mail.yourdomain.com instead of outlook.com. For this you have to add a new CNAME record and point it to go.domains.live.com.
Zoho Mail offers powerful email hosting services including calendar, document management, task management, and contact management.
The free account of Zoho Mail allows user to add up to 3 users to your email address, with 5GB storage per user. Paid accounts starts at just $2 per month per user. The paid accounts allow you to host multiple domains and you also get a bigger inbox.
Features of Zoho Mail:
- Powerful Administrative Console
- Multiple domain management
- No Ads (even in free version)
- Free up to 3 users
- Multiple Domain based Mail Alias creation
- POP Server Support
- IP based Security Option
- Groups with varied access controls
- Group Mail
- Catch All Mail box
- Effective SPAM control
- Organize your Email effectively with Folders, Labels and Filters
- Web based Mail with attractive features and anytime anywhere access
- Access via IMAP and POP
- Manage your other accounts via POP inside Zoho Mail
- Access all Business Apps from a single console
So, this was our list of best alternatives for Google Apps; which one are you using or which alternative is most liked my you? Tell us and share your experience via the comments section.