Richard Bucker

Google Support

Posted at — Jan 17, 2015

I was helping my sister in-law recover her Google calendar yesterday when I ran out of options.  I needed Google Support. And the only way you get Google Support is by paying for your Google Apps for Work. Actually getting to support was novel and with just a little friction sprinkled in. While the outcome seems to be a success it’s not because of Google but due to a 3rd party app.Logging in as her Google App admin I found the support button.  No matter how I got there whether it was google search I ended up in the same basic place. There was a moment when I thought I was going to be able to get into the support system and at least ask the question whether or not I could recover her calendar but that never happened. Everything pushed me back. So I finally got her approval to get a paid account… $5 per user per month.upgrade your account to paidlogin as adminpress the support buttonpress the GET PIN buttonthe pin is good for 60 minutescall the support numberenter the pinwhen the human answers they will confirm or record contact info that you previous entered…At this point I recounted my problem. When the support rep repeated what I was asking back to me he said he would consult his peers and get back to me. He returned in less than 5 minutes with the following:If the calendar was deleted then all hope is lost. The calendar program clearly states that it would not be recoverable.If someone deleted individual items they could be recovered, however, that would mean using a 3rd party application from the application marketplace… which was free.Oh, and there is one piece of information missing from your account…. click and click… please select a billing plan.While I had agreed to the upgrade it was still free for 30 days and Google had not prompted me for billing information. The words he chose for #3 was alarming. I was concerned that while I had been using the free account for years that I had missed a configuration option or something that might put the whole thing at risk… NO! I’ll deal with billing later.While the calendar undelete application worked; it was not flawless. There are calendar entries that would not undelete and without an explanation. Additionally, after completing any task I was prompted for their not-so-free backup service. I’m sure it’s a great idea. Clearly Google has not seen fit to provide some of the basic application features that had I a desktop application would likely have been able to recover from.As for the cost, $5/user/month is not bad and $10/user/month for unlimited disk space is even better. I’m sure that Google has plenty of metrics that prove that it’s cost effective for everyone. My overarching concern is that the cloud marketplace is now supplanting my desktop marketplace and the tools are still not in parity.