App.net, previously only available via paid memberships, has added a free service tier to help open up the service to new members.
But it’s happening on a limited basis: New members must get an invite from an existing App.net paid subscriber. And once in the system, the new free-tier members will only be able to follow 40 users, and will also have limits on file storage and file size in their accounts.
In his announcement, founder Dalton Caldwell says the free tier was always in the company’s plans and now’s the right time for it because there are plenty of third-party apps across multiple platforms, and because App.net recently completed two APIs that expand what the service and its users can do.
If you’re a current user that hasn’t accessed App.net in a while (like me), you’ll notice a much-improved new design that appears to have rolled out sometime in the last few days. It’s a big improvement over the previous user interface.