This is *huge* news – Apple is about to allow large corporates to get volume discounts on iPhone/iPad apps. i.e.: buy 100,000 copies of a single app, and the price per app drops. Standard practice in almost every market in the world – but until now forbidden by Apple.
Why is this big? Well, for instance, one company we advised back in 2009 wanted to build an iPhone app that would immediately be licensed to one of their existing clients, guaranteed minimum order: 50,000 *paid* copies. The only caveat? The client would demand a 25%-75% discount scaled with the number of copies bought. At the time, Apple refused this pricing … so the product never got made. Half a million dollars or more, just in that one sale, of one app.
Some snippets from the emails Apple’s been sending out to developers:
Business customers will soon be able to buy your apps in volume. Click through the latest Paid Applications Agreement so that your apps will be offered for sale when the Volume Purchase Program is available to businesses.
Through the Volume Purchase Program, you’ll be able to sell custom B2B apps to your business customers. Custom B2B apps provide tailored solutions to address specific business needs. Get a head start on developing custom B2B apps today.
And Wired’s brief snippet on the buy-side purchasing interface:
Now it’s as easy to buy multiple apps as it is to buy one. The buyer picks the app, chooses how many they want and the purchase is paid for by their corporate credit card. Instead of an immediate download, the buyer gets a bunch of promo codes which they can then send out to whoever they want.
Designing an iPad or Android Tablet app, and wondering if you’re asking users to download “too much” data while using it?
We know that “unlimited” data packages often run a 1GB / month soft-cap, or 3GB / month if you’ve got a long-running contract – but how much of that do people actually use?
Are they running at the limit, or do they have hundreds of meg to spare?
Well … according to Nielsen, the average North American iPhone/Android user is already grabbing approx 500MB of data each month
One of the side-effects of lititgation – especially over patents – is that parties are often required to make info public on how much they “may have infringed”. i.e. … exact sales figures. For most companies, that’s fine – this is info they were already sharing / boasting about publically. Apple is way too secretive to do that normally, so the figures from Apple vs Samsung (April 2011) are particularly revealing.
As of March 2011, according to Apple’s legal filings:
- iPhone: 108m sold
- iPod Touch: 60m sold
- iPad: 19m sold
The linked article goes into a great blow-by-blow analysis of the lawsuit, including compare/contrast examples of the icons that Apple is claiming are trademark infringement.
For the last 2 years, if you were interested in an Android app, and wanted to know more … you couldn’t. Google weren’t allowing anyone to browse the store from a web browser (even though that’s essentially what their handsets were doing).
This made it MUCH harder to find legitimate apps, MUCH harder to purchase them (the handsets are a terrible browsing platform), and in practice prevented sharing apps with others (there was no clickable URL that you could e.g. embed in a blogpost).
So, now look at this, the link for an app we worked on last year:
The marketplace site is very fast, and nicely laid-out (like the App Store, this is all auto-generated by Google). IMHO the layout and arrangement is better than Apple’s – less clutter, easier to scan through visually. It will probably fill-out over time (it’s very ascetic right now), but it’s a great start.
It’s taken Google a long time, but it’s a good step in the right direction…
…let’s see if this is ordering correctly