Right now, the high(er) registration/renewal fees make sense because the extensions in question are just being launched and consequently, a lot of the best domains of each new gTLD will be available on a first come, first served basis.
So sure, some people will be more than willing to pay a fee that’s 2-3x times higher than with let’s say dot com if they are able to secure some of the best domains in that particular extension. If the domain is really good (think Insurance.gtld, Loans.gtld and so on), it might even make sense to pay a premium renewal fee.
But after as little as one year (most likely even sooner), all of the best domains will be taken and at that point, registry operators have to understand that in this new environment, registrants might no longer be willing to pay a premium compared to the dot com TLD.
It will be interesting to see how things unfold. I’m sure registry operators considered all sorts of scenarios and will ultimately do whatever makes more sense for them financially. We can’t blame them since let’s face it, each new gTLD is a business and needs to be treated accordingly.
Maybe they’ll keep the legacy (higher) rates for the early domains and charge less for new registrations. Maybe they’ll reduce the fees for all domains. Maybe they’ll keep the current pricing structure or in some cases, they might actually raise fees.
As a domainer and an entrepreneur, I have to admit I’m very curious as to what will happen in 2015 and beyond. There will be a lot of lessons to be learned and no matter what side of the fence you’re on when it comes to these new extensions, I’m 100% sure we will all have a lot to learn over the next few years.