Still, across all ships, there are still many bots selling dozens of AC items (even with player-trade disabled as we type): so this A/B testing (or whatever the devs are doing; which isn't working) of disabling the player-trade trade feature seems to be about something else and not about the prevention of what we may think it is. There hasn't been an official statement yet, so everything is just speculation. However, I do agree on some compensation, as it's literally 1/3 of the reasons why people buy premium.
Some solutions for bots:
Stopping a chat feature in-game isn't the problem; it's identifying and preventing bots from playing/joining the game. An example is some country (politics), where most MMOs there require you to use your SSN (or some form of real-life ID) and it's pretty strict there as well with identification when making an account on some games.
A few solutions for restricting chat on new players are either adding two-factor authentication; such as using a code from your email/phone when logging in to the game via PSO2's launcher in order to chat immediately OR wait 3 days (or 1 week) default to be able to use in-game chat (some account flag setting).
Another solution can be; when logging into the ship for the first time, you must complete a captcha to verify you're a human (obviously must be some good captcha).
Another solution can be, that maybe when you make your first character on a ship; you cannot skip a short randomized quest (that cannot be botted, scripted, or macroed) that introduces the PSO2 world to you (very basic, how to move, etc., IDK) and maybe takes like 5 minutes to do (and there will be clear instructions how to complete this randomized quest (like a simon says kind of thing)), where bots will most likely fail if a real human isn't playing the game), before the actual story prologue with Afin.
There could be other solutions as well... Like, maybe only restricting area or global chat to premium members in generic areas (like the Lobby/Gate Area), BUT places like the Alliance Quarters and Personal Quarters; everyone can use area/global chat.
If none are even tried, then the bot issue isn't really Sega's main focus; because it shouldn't be that hard to implement any of the above (this issue has been on-going for like what? 6 months now...); or they are very busy with NGS. Anyway, those are just my opinions.