The reason we will eventually have to charge a premium is because of the maintenance. Chrome gets updated, Gmail gets updated, and all the third party extensions get updated. We have to constantly ensure Old Compose plays nicely with all those moving parts and that takes a lot of time and effort. "
That said, the newly launched Old Compose v2 is still absolutely free for now, and it's well worth trying out if you're not a fan of the new Gmail experience. I've been using the extension for a couple of weeks now, and basking in the Gmail experience of old is simply wonderful.
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