swa66 - 11:12 pm on Dec 7, 2012 (gmt 0)
I run a few of the free ones and one paying one (due to more than 50 users). In all the years I've never had much need for support, but on the one occasion I did need support, it luckily was on the for pay one and I must say the help was excellent, to the point and fast.
Regardless, before Google Apps I was on the verge of giving up on email (I get about 1000 spam messages a day as a minimum, and I've once been flooded with 10000 in a few hours). Google's spam filters outclass everything out there, and that alone is well worth what they charge for the service.
In the end you get what you pay for and I'll be happy to pay for the accounts in the smaller domains if I have to.
The argumentation is obviously bogus, but not having 2 versions of the same will hopefully allow them to simplify it all a bit (the two are different) and as a result to put in faster evolution of the service. Or to put a few more people on improving it as it generates more money for them.