A new UK-based hosted blog service came out of private beta last week and is now open for business.
[…] Blogging has been technologically very active recently, but feature-wise it’s been completely stagnant. We’ve capitalized on this and added all the features of major corporate websites to the blogging equation. Indeed the feature list of the London-based ‘do it yourself’ service appears never-ending: online shop, discussion forums, image gallery, job search, and even integration with a host of big-name third party services, such as Google Analytics and Paypal. This certainly isn’t your average blog.
As Tual says, this isn’t just a hosted blog service but an all-embracing offering that takes in broader content management features for managing a complete website.
I’ve signed up for the free 30-day trial just to see if this really can be as game-changing as Tual believes it will be.
On first looks, it certainly is very easy to set up. You can choose whether you want just a blog, a website, or both. You can add or substract elements like a PayPal-based store, discussion forums, etc.
One thing I noticed immediately is that trackbacks are not offered at all. You don’t have a choice. That’s a big mistake, in my view, one that’s unlikely to appeal to many business bloggers as trackbacks are one of the fundamental aspects of linking and connecting between blogs. At least provide the choice.
Stuart Bruce has a good summary of the features.
If you sign up for Terapad after the 30-day trial, it will cost you $18 a month. That’s on the pricey side compared to other paid-for hosted services such as TypePad or BlogHarbor, or the Yahoo! hosted blog service based on Movable Type.
Still, you’re getting more than just a blog with Terapad.
If you do sign up for the trial, take a careful look at the terms and conditions before you click the ‘next’ button. Heavyweight conditions here, especially those relating to Stephan Tual Ltd’s rights to materials provided by users. Some businesses may not be too comfortable with this one in particular. [Edit: I linked to the wrong T&C – see the comments.]
I was curious as to what the underlying technical platform is behind Terapad. Looks like Adobe’s Cold Fusion if the .cfm file extension of all the pages is any indicator.
I’ve set up only a blog for the moment, called The Next Level? I’ll be using that as a place to comment on the service as I get to know it during the next 30 days.
You can have multiple authors for your blog (but not multiple blogs on one account). If you’re in the PR community and would like to join me in trying out Terapad as an author on my test site, just let me know.
It might be fun to experiment together.