Every so often we have a paying for apps debate, sparked off by a popular app releasing an update or changing income model – and here we are again. Drafts 5 launches to quite a bit of fun fair from reviewers and also some backlash from users. Time and time again you hear “I won’t pay for app subscriptions”.
“Its a terrible business model, that I don’t agree with”
Since Apple expanded the subscription model, quite a few apps have adopted the option of charging a small monthly fee or yearly price. Usually giving users the option of a free tier and only paying for more advanced features. These usually come in the form of syncing or hosting, in the case of Drafts it is pro features such as themes and actions. It doesn’t matter what features you get for the price it never quite satisfies the resistance.
What is surprising is more often that not when questioned, the retort is one with quite a few logical holes. Quite a common one is the fact users would rather pay for a version upgrade. Which is a pretty easy fix, simply change the way you think about the subscriptions.
Think of the yearly price as purchasing this version with free upgrades. If it gets to the end of that period, either pay again or choose something else. Subscriptions aren’t for every user, nor every app on your phone. No one wants to pay micro payments for every app, but the ones that really aid your life deserve funding. What’s the alternative, poor quality free apps? Adverts that harvest user data and break up design or usage?
By paying money towards an app you aid development greatly you create a constant stream of funding to pay for regular updates and improvements. So in the long run you generally get many more updates than the usual single pay to use apps. It’s a win win situation – just change the way you view them.