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Despite a website that looks more suited to a fantasy computer game, and plan names that have to number amongst the strangest in the hosting world, Freehostia provides a good quality of shared hosting at reasonable prices. Whilst it certainly isn't the best seller of shared plans, Freehostia's five packages cover most basic needs, offering decent functionality and adequate specifications. And, with a free plan to rival many of its competitors' premium plans, the company has successfully cornered this section of the market.
With five different shared plans, Freehostia offers a broader variety than most. However, it is not just in its variety that the company performs well; Freehostia excels both in its performance and its functionality. With powerful technology, as evidenced by the company's great uptime record, Freehostia has a bigger emphasis on performance than most shared-only sites. And by offering support for all major scripts and a generous database provision, the company has also recognized the importance of providing the opportunity for customers to design and manage their websites in ways that suit them. However, despite these strengths, the company fails to make a splash when it comes to the plans' raw specifications. The lower plans in particular offer very limited disk space, and with other strict limits on these cheaper plans, you may feel that other companies can offer greater value for money. Watercircle is only marginally better than the free plan when it comes to specifications and features, for instance, so most users will want to upgrade to at least the company's Lovebeat package, incurring an extra cost. And with little extra functionality offered for such an upgrade, you may want to look for one of the many 'unlimited' shared plans out there, rather than having to pay extra for specifications that many companies offer as standard.
With even Freehostia's free plan promising ticket response times of less than 24 hours, you know the company takes its support system seriously. Customers on any of the premium plans further qualify for a vastly improved 1-hour response time, which is amongst the best in the business, with guarantees of four or six hours proving much more common on other similarly-priced plans. The online help center is also impressive, with information and video tutorials to guide you through common difficulties. However, the company's support provision has a major hole, in that it does not offer telephone or live chat support. With neither of these direct contact options available, the company fails to provide the multi-layered support that most customers now expect.
Overall, Freehostia has some nice touches and its technology and basic features put it among the more reliable shared hosting providers on the market. However, with little in the way of extra tools, a fairly limited set of specifications, and a mediocre support package, you can do a lot better. To see what we mean, check out our Top 10.
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