In response to developer sadness and anger, Google has announced it plans to offer a paid version of its Google Translate API. Last week the company said it would pull the plug after the Translate API saw extensive abuse. There are no details on pricing, or a timeline, but the free API is not scheduled for removal until December.
The company made the announcement in an update to the original post:
In the days since we announced the deprecation of the Translate API, we’ve seen the passion and interest expressed by so many of you, through comments here (believe me, we read every one of them) and elsewhere. I’m happy to share that we’re working hard to address your concerns, and will be releasing an updated plan to offer a paid version of the Translate API. Please stay tuned; we’ll post a full update as soon as possible.
It's not the first paid API for Google. Its API console, which was released last year, has a billing option. The company currently charges for the Google Custom Search API, Google Prediction API and Google Storage API. Nor is it alone amongst its competitors. After joining forces with Microsoft for search, Yahoo announced plans to charge for its search service, the Yahoo BOSS API.
Among the complaints after Google announced that Translate was deprecated was that developers wanted a chance to pay for the API. Now Google is giving them that chance. We heard similar things from the popular LinkedIn mashup after it ran into rate limits, though the business social network ended up extending the limits for the app.