Pricing services for startups means thinking like one

05/01/13 23:16:00    

By Michael Mealling

One of the reasons that David Cummings built Atlanta Tech Village was to upend the Atlanta real estate world by providing solutions that fit the needs of startups. But startups need more than real estate. We need insurance, marketing services, accounting, and coaching. Many of those have solutions but some key ones don't.

One that doesn't have a good solution is computing hardware. Cloud services has created a wonderful solution for datacenter hardware and centralized services such as fileservers and telephone systems. But one area that doesn't seem to have a good solution is desktop hardware. You can finance it but you are still making payments on an asset that your stuck with for the term of the lease. If your team is fluctuating in size (interns, contractors, etc) then even a 1 year lease can be an issue.

What we need is some way of renting a workstation on a monthly basis. One solution is rent a Mac. They host an dedicated Mac Mini equivalent that you then VNC to from your laptop or other device. For employees willing to use their own laptops it is a solution to give them something more powerful. Their basic rental service has two tiers: $25 with a 1 terabyte/month limit and an unlimited bandwidth plan for $45. Its part of the solution but there still needs to be something in between two year leases and trade show rates.

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