Feeds

Postmaster kills off 'free for life' webmail

UK stalwart says it's a big boys' game now

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

Postmaster will shutter its free webmail service from the middle of next month because it has been unable to win enough advertising revenue.

The service, which launched in 1996 and was Europe's first free webmail offering, used to be advertised as "free for life" by former owner Bibliotech. From August 14 users will have to pay £14.99 per year to maintain their accounts.

Tim Conroy, MD of Spider Networks, which now operates the service, said the decision had to be made on purely economic grounds. He said: "Advertising revenues have plummeted. One or two advertisers promised the world and didn't deliver."

The firm is pitching its new paid-for Postmaster as faster and more reliable.

Spider Networks expects to lose many of Postmaster's tens of thousands of users of the free services before the 60 day notice period is up. Conroy said his technical team are examining if it's feasible to offer an IMAP server to ease migration of email archives to new providers.

Angry punters have attacked the decision in Postmaster's customer forums.

"I would love to be able to continue to support people for free...if I can persuade some customers to stay and pay it makes more sense for me to use the infrastructure for different things," Conroy said. Spider Networks is pushing into education network provision.

Offering ad-supported webmail is now a game for the likes of Google and Yahoo!, he added.®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Google Nest, ARM, Samsung pull out Thread to strangle ZigBee
But there's a flaw in Google's IP-based IoT system
Orange spent weekend spamming customers with TXTs
Zero, not infinity, is the Magic Number customers want
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
'Two-speed internet' storm turns FCC.gov into zero-speed website
Deadline for comments on net neutrality shake-up extended to Friday
NBN Co execs: No FTTN product until 2015
Faster? Not yet. Cheaper? No data
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.