PDA

View Full Version : Wolfram Alpha App Debuts with $49.99 Price Tag




MacRumors
Oct 19, 2009, 03:42 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/10/19/wolfram-alpha-app-debuts-with-49-99-price-tag/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/10/19/163114-wolfram-1.jpg http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/10/19/163114-wolfram-2.jpg

Wolfram Alpha, the online computational knowledge engine that launched in May, now has an app available in the App Store. According to its App Store description, the app "plugs directly into Wolfram|Alpha's supercomputing cloud to deliver the unrivaled power of the Wolfram|Alpha knowledge engine to the mobile environment."

While the app still requires an internet connection to work, it includes a special keyboard to make the entry of special characters for mathematical and other functions easy. An early review (http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-19512_7-10377493-233.html?part=rss&tag=feed&subj=iPhoneAtlas) by CNET describes that the app makes all output, which are provided as GIF images even when the service is accessed through Safari, show well on the iPhone's screen and that queries can be bookmarked and published via Twitter.

http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/10/19/163114-wolfram-3.jpg http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/10/19/163114-wolfram-4.jpg

The app's price is what garners quite a bit of attention - it costs $49.99 [App Store (http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=334989259&mt=8)] while the Wolfram Alpha site is free to use when accessed through a web browser, including Safari on the iPhone, and is most likely targeted at power users who need frequent access to the service for complex computations.

Article Link: Wolfram Alpha App Debuts with $49.99 Price Tag (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/10/19/wolfram-alpha-app-debuts-with-49-99-price-tag/)



metanoia
Oct 19, 2009, 04:06 PM
Hopefully this can stem the tide of apps that sell for far below that they're worth... as an app developer, this is great to see :)

MBHockey
Oct 19, 2009, 04:19 PM
Or you could use the site for free...

:confused:

ThunderSkunk
Oct 19, 2009, 04:33 PM
I love wolfram alpha.

I just wish it didn't make me feel stupid every time I use it.

websyndicate
Oct 19, 2009, 04:56 PM
cool its only 49.99 too much

wackymacky
Oct 19, 2009, 05:01 PM
Pitty it's so much; it is quite a fun toy.

BornAgainMac
Oct 19, 2009, 05:37 PM
We are spoiled. 20 years ago, we would have easily paid that for software that did what it did.

rhett7660
Oct 19, 2009, 05:47 PM
We are spoiled. 20 years ago, we would have easily paid that for software that did what it did.

I agree..... Great site though!!! Leo Laport interviewed him on TWIT and to say the least, he has put a lot of time and effort into the website. Something like 5 years in the making and over 1-5 (can't remember which) million lines of mathematical lines of code.. or something along those lines..

benspratling
Oct 19, 2009, 05:55 PM
$50 for an app that does nothing but give you access to a free webpage?
(And one that works just fine on the iPhone?)

Geez...

Someone in marketing wrote 50 and meant cents not dollars....

Edit: I checked. Using Wolfram Alpha WEBPAGE on my iPhone to integrate x^2 while standing in line at Subway - works just fine. No app required. - Just the darn network connection.

Harpo
Oct 19, 2009, 06:05 PM
It does seem a little absurd, but it is also absurd that if the website required a payment, less people would complain. I suppose we're complaining about the perversity, not the price.

icloud
Oct 19, 2009, 06:36 PM
WTF? It's free to access using Safari but costs 50.00 to use their app (which seems to be a glorified access to the same site with some .css/html mods to make it more accessible for iPhone)?

Who's the village idiot there in charge of marketing?

icloud
Oct 19, 2009, 06:38 PM
Seems they got it backwards. I'd charge for the site and offer a mobile version of it free (or a nominal charge) to those paying members of my site.

Scippy
Oct 19, 2009, 06:45 PM
I wonder how many people have actually but the app.

leonstafford
Oct 19, 2009, 08:20 PM
here's a sample equation to test:

free service * marketing retard = (interested people + accidental purchases) ≠ ( bling bling | street cred ) ∴ ωA * [suck-ass]

yoman
Oct 19, 2009, 08:46 PM
It seems people are buying the app. Who would've thought?

RappleRapple
Oct 19, 2009, 09:46 PM
I thought for sure that the price was a typo.

What a joke! :p

thejadedmonkey
Oct 19, 2009, 11:04 PM
I just hope they don't give in and lower the price now.

Loge
Oct 20, 2009, 02:50 AM
I have bought it and am impressed so far!

Web version is fine for the odd use, but I expect to use it a lot, and access via a dedicated app is far nicer than through a web browser. In particular I like the extended keyboard, which means I don't have to keep moving screens to type in a mix of symbols, numbers and text.

yoman
Oct 20, 2009, 05:28 AM
Number #53 of the Top Grossing as of this posting.

kas23
Oct 20, 2009, 07:35 AM
Number #53 of the Top Grossing as of this posting.

This App is likely going to sell a lot in its first week of offering -- mainly to hardcore users or people with too much money. I can't blame the developer starting very high, for this very reason. He could have offered it at $100 and it still would sell a lot in the first few days. There are people out there who will just have to have this app, at any cost. But, then, it's likely going to fall off the charts after a week. It just doesn't make sense to sell an app for $50 when you can get the same content for free on Safari. The price will undoubtedly drop at this point.

Even at $20, it would be steep, but I would pay for it.

kyeblue
Oct 20, 2009, 08:53 AM
I am not sure if all the computing is done in iPhone or if the application is only an UI that still requires back-end computation on the server. Either way, it doesn't make sense.

NJMetsHero
Oct 20, 2009, 08:59 AM
You're not going to get many people buying that just because the same tool is available on the internet for free. Yeah it's a little easier to use, but not 49.99 easier. I like Wolfram, I use it a little less than regularly for different things. It's great. Just don't see anyone buying this. Anyone who uses it enough to buy an app like that is probably going to be using it on their desktop/laptop more.

jmnikricket
Oct 20, 2009, 10:20 AM
Pitty it's so much; it is quite a fun toy.

I agree that it is basically a toy. I played around on the site for a good hour when it came out and thought it was cool but haven't touched it since. While it has a ton of interesting information, I have a hard time believing there's many people that find it useful and practical enough to justify the price.

Feel free to prove me wrong though App Store.

benspratling
Oct 20, 2009, 02:17 PM
I am not sure if all the computing is done in iPhone or if the application is only an UI that still requires back-end computation on the server. Either way, it doesn't make sense.

It sends it to the website and then sends you the answer.
I see a bookmarking button. Safari has a bookmarking button, too...

qubex
Oct 26, 2009, 04:46 AM
I'd buy it instantly if it did it's computation in the front-end.

MVApple
Oct 28, 2009, 02:58 AM
As the article states this is probably for power users, everyone else stick to safari.

I think apps are under-priced to some extent, but then again, low prices=lots of buys. Regardless, I don't see the trend changing anytime soon. I forgot how much I paid for Pocket God but I think it was like a buck or two and that thing STILL gets updates, crazy value. Too many value conscious developers spoiling us so that $49.99 for what you can access for free seems nuts.

lllll
Oct 28, 2009, 02:06 PM
$50 !! Are they crazy. There's no way I'm going to pay $50 for this apps. And the people that pay $50 for it are probably .................... just curious. :D

update: I change my mind. I could see how this apps would benefit me. with this apps, I don't have to be on the computer all the time. just open this app and its like a tutor. I hope it can help me with Calculus 4 and Statistic. and I hope they meant $4.99 instead of $49.99
It must have been a typo, right Wolfram?

Oh, if it could also help with coding and english grammar, that would really convince me that it is worth $50.

update II: now I understand why it's $50.

Bimbalbamble
Nov 18, 2009, 05:54 AM
I love wolfram alpha.

I just wish it didn't make me feel stupid every time I use it.

I feel you pain... :)