Six Apart’s TypePad blogging service has long been aimed at bloggers who were serious enough about what they were doing to fork over money for a blogging platform. But today Six Apart is announcing TypePad Micro, a new level of TypePad service that’s meant for extremely casual blogging–and which is the first version of the service that’s free.
Six Apart CEO Chris Alden told me that TypePad Micro is meant for quick, brief, informal blogging and photoblogging–the kind of stuff that feels like a cross between traditional blogging and status updates a la Twitter. It’s a hybrid that’s associated with Tumblr, the service that popularized microblogging, and TypePad Micro’s most obvious rival. Alden said that he thinks Micro will appeal both to paying TypePad customers who’d like a home for a microblog, and to people who are currently part of TypePad blog communities but who don’t blog themselves.
Micro is a reduced-feature version of TypePad Pro: For instance, it currently offers only one theme, called Chroma (you can customize its colors). Alden said that Six Apart might add more themes later, and that it doesn’t plan to place ads on Micro blogs. But it does see the new service as a good stepping stone to full, paid TypePad Pro accounts.
TypePad supports the concept of Twitter-like followers, and any followers a Micro blogger has are prominently displayed in the Chroma theme. So a Micro blog does, indeed, feel like a richer, semi-standalone version of a Twitter account.
A few TypePad Micro blogs:
If you give the new service a try, let us know what you think…