Guess what, internoodle? Google Apps is officially out of beta. Do you know what that means? It means that Gmail, Docs, Calendar, and Talk are losing that "beta" signage / language you've come to know and loathe. It also seems to mean that Google will be taking a much more direct and serious approach to courting businesses for its Apps suite. At first blush, it looks like the company has all but squashed the "Standard Edition" free hosted Apps package that many now use, though that isn't the case (yet). We say "all but" because while it looks
like the pro bono package has been zapped out of existence by the magic raygun of capitalism, a tiny link to the service still exists on an arcane page buried deep
in the casefiles of one T. Google Merryweather III. Or just Google. To be completely clear, however, regular old Gmail will still be freely available
to anyone and everyone who wants a crack at it. At any rate, you'll be happy to know that the beta tag will be scuttled later today, and you can start getting righteously mad at Google for not taking care of their proper, released products immediately. Now maybe they can get to coding up nice native versions of Gmail for the iPhone and webOS... eh?Update:
The folks at Google, bless 'em, have posted a quick note
on their blog stating explicitly that the Standard version of Apps isn't going anywhere. In their words, "We have no intention of eliminating Standard Edition, and we apologize for any confusion." Nice!