Awhile back I wrote a post about how much I liked Phanfare and until now I have been really happy with having them host my photos and videos. It gave my family a way to keep in touch with us and provided a window into the events of our lives that they were not able to be there for. Unfortunately Phanfare has decided that in order for them to continue to exist, they need to charge a minimum of $100/yr regardless of your usage. This is just for the basic hosting package. So it seems that it costs them as much to hold onto my 5GB of data as it does for someone else to store 50GB. This price increase is almost DOUBLE the amount that I have been paying up until this point. Possibly the worst part is the lack of notification to their existing customers. I found out, not from any correspondence from them, but through a little notification in my account settings that I happened to stumble onto.
It is unfortunate that they decided to go this route, and not consider the people who don’t store a ton of information on their servers. I felt that I paid them a lot of money for the space I was actually using, and I did it because they had some of the best photo and video management packages I have seen to date. In the end it doesn’t matter how good an application they have if I can’t afford to use it.
So with that I have downloaded my information off of Phanfare and will be cancelling my account with them before they automatically bill me for another year. I am really unhappy to have to find another site, when I felt I had finally found a solution that worked so perfectly for me. Thanks Phanfare…it was good while it lasted.
Tag Archives: hosting
Awhile back I decided on Smugmug as the best photo/video hosting solution for our family photos and movies…or so I thought. I really enjoyed the look of Smugmug and the customer service was first rate, but it had one major flaw. I fought continuously with it when trying to arrange my photos. It seemed like so much more hassle than it needed to be and the changes I would make never seemed to stick. I think that when you are one of the more expensive photo hosting sites that it should be a superior experience all around.
So I went searching for something better and took a closer look at Phanfare. I had looked at Phanfare before, but passed it up for some reason the first time. Is it possible that there have been improvements since the first time I used it? Maybe, but all I know is that I have been really impressed with it so far. I love the desktop client and really enjoy the ease of organizing my photos and videos. I am not going to say it is hands down the best designed photo site, but if I have to choose between the slight edge I think Smugmug has in the aesthetics department or the ease of use and functions that Phanfare has I will choose the latter every time.
Recently I was pleasantly surprised by the news that yearly subscriptions would be dropping to $49.99 which is just icing on the cake. I think that this is a fair price for the ability to share pictures and video with family members wherever they may be. I really feel that this is a smart move to encourage people to host with them and I applaud them for giving consumers a break in a time when we could use it the most.
After seeing the details of the new pricing scheme, I am less inclined to recommend Phanfare to new customers. It seems that a Premium account costing $49.99 only gets you 5 GB of storage and the Pro account gives you 20GB for $99/year (with additional 20GB for another $49.99/year). From the sounds of it, current users that have unlimited storage will retain that feature, but can most likely look forward to price increases before too long 😦