The make-your-own-monopoly era

Jon Mitchell, writing for ReadWrite:

Though this hasn’t happened yet, the announcement of the Files API makes possible a future App.net story that would be the most interesting so far. By providing the 10GB of cloud storage to paid accounts, App.net makes a new tier of pricing possible that could allow social-only accounts to be free. In that scenario, App.net would be just like Twitter, only with a thriving ecosystem of client apps, the possibility of upgrading to a powerful, cloud-backed service, and no ads whatsoever.

This model has a serious shot, especially as we transition from the startup-a-product era to the startup-a-business era of software: provide a free service that’s so good (and networked) it actually gives you a nascent monopoly on all the paid services built on top.