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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:16 PM   #1
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Apple Prevents Omni Group From Offering Discounted Mac App Store Upgrades




Last week, The Omni Group released a program called OmniKeyMaster that would allow users who purchased older Mac App Store versions of the company's software to purchase discounted upgrades in the future, directly from the company.

Today, the company said it would be unable to offer upgrades to Mac App Store customers because of Apple's App Store policies.
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My apologies: I'm afraid we will not be able to offer upgrade pricing to our Mac App Store customers after all. So long as we continue to sell our apps through the Mac App Store, we are not allowed to distribute updates through other channels to apps which were purchased from the App Store.

We still feel upgrade pricing is important for customers purchasing serious productivity software, since the initial value received from purchasing an app like OmniGraffle or OmniPlan is much different from the incremental value of upgrading that app from version 5.0 to version 6.0. We will continue to ask Apple to support upgrade pricing in the App Store, and I would encourage others to do the same--but until that happens, upgrade pricing will only be available to customers who buy our apps direct from our online store.
A number of developers have asked Apple for the ability to offer upgrade pricing to purchasers -- a very common software pricing strategy -- but the App Store requires that upgrades either be offered for free to existing owners, or sold as a completely separate offering on the App Store, at the same price for all customers, new and old.

Red Sweater Software's Daniel Jalkut called the move a "chilling message from Apple" and filed a bug report with Apple requesting upgrade pricing support for the App Store:
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The impact of Apple's continued lack of support for upgrade pricing has been increased by an apparent effort on Apple's part to enforce 3rd party developers trying to accommodate upgrade pricing through their own means:

http://www.omnigroup.com/blog/entry/update-no-upgrade-pricing-for-mac-app-store-purchases

Most of us Mac developers are loyal Apple fans who would like to support the Mac App Store and keep our customers who purchased on the Mac App Store within that system. By not supporting an upgrade mechanism for these customers Apple leaves us in a position where we're forced to either treat Mac App Store customers as 2nd class customers or to forego across the board the expected compensation for major upgrades to our applications.
Apple has moved away from upgrade pricing in recent years, choosing instead to slash the prices of its major software titles instead of offering discounts for current owners. Final Cut Pro X, for example, costs $299 while its prior version was $999.

Article Link: Apple Prevents Omni Group From Offering Discounted Mac App Store Upgrades
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:17 PM   #2
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It took them several days to state this one.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:22 PM   #3
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I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:24 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by orangebluedevil View Post
I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.
That's the user's choice, not everyone needs to be babied. All this says to me is apple is becoming a control freak and is only going to make their platforms more and more closed.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:28 PM   #5
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Buy straight from the developer. No need to deal with the Mac App Store if you can get a discounted version elsewhere. There are certain developers that offer their software on the MAS, but I still go to their website because of discounts, access to betas, etc.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:31 PM   #6
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Personally, I'm sick of these 'upgrades' when most of the time it's just bug fixes and compatibility support. Might as well sell your software as a subscription.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:33 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by orangebluedevil View Post
I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.
They (the developers) don't mind selling upgrades via App Store. The problem is that Apple does not support the notion of paid upgrades.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:34 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by shareef777 View Post
Personally, I'm sick of these 'upgrades' when most of the time it's just bug fixes and compatibility support. Might as well sell your software as a subscription.
Well, in the case of the OmniGroup, the upcoming OmniFocus 2 has been completely redesigned and is essentially a new application.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:39 PM   #9
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The idea with the App Store is that when you buy a piece of software, future updates are included in it and there is no confusability with different versions of the same software.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:39 PM   #10
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could one offer a rebate for previous customers?
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:41 PM   #11
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Can they not offer an in-app purchase as an upgrade and then a standalone app for new buyers?

I am not a developer so I don't know if this is possible or extremely inconvenient but it's just a thought.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:46 PM   #12
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Good. I'm sure Omni was fully aware of this before Apple put an end to it.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:47 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by rwilliams View Post
Well, in the case of the OmniGroup, the upcoming OmniFocus 2 has been completely redesigned and is essentially a new application.
Sorry, wasn't pointing towards OmniGroup in particular (actually, Parallels comes to mind as they literally force you to upgrade every year as their prior version is never upgraded to fully function with the latest OS X).
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:47 PM   #14
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I like buying from the App Store because I like the idea that all my apps and updates come from a single source; however, there are two major issues:

1. Update pricing.

I want developers to stay in business and feed their families.

2. Time-limited demos.

I cannot justify spending money on more expensive software if I'm not able to try a demo first. This isn't as much of an issue with the Mac App Store since demos are often available from the developer's web site; however, it is an issue for iOS devices.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:48 PM   #15
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If I remember right, Coda 2 debuted on the App store for 50% off for a few days ($49.99 vs $99.99). This is how Panic got around it. However, Panic has other concerns about using the MAS distribution platform, specifically the long approval process:

http://www.panic.com/blog/2012/06/up...store-version/

Here are some more recent issues they have brought up about the MAS policies on their software -- keep in mind, Coda is used by many power-users as well as non-power-users.

http://www.panic.com/blog/2012/12/coda-and-sandboxing/

As a Coda 1 user who paid the $49 for Coda 2 through the MAS, I hope they do the same when the time comes for Coda 3. The software isn't that expensive, and it is worth every penny I paid for it.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:49 PM   #16
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I always purchase from the vendor when there is a choice. Upgrade options are but a part of the reason. Many apps on the MacApp Store have fewer features due to Apple's sandboxing rules.
I did buy Timult Hype 1.0 from the MacAp Store and then recently upgraded to 2.0 directly from the vendor. I guess I was just in time.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:50 PM   #17
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I'm fully in support of discounted app upgrades, as it supports the age-old notion of customer loyalty. But then you could always take the Pixelmator route and offer your powerful apps at dirt-cheap pricing, which renders the need for a discount moot anyway. With that line of thinking, OmniGroup should lower their costs.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:51 PM   #18
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This is good. If we want new software then come out with a new app entry or have the app free and use a key code system
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:51 PM   #19
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Slightly off-topic, but:

So funny to see all of the telegraphing on Apple's OSX strategy that is going seemingly unnoticed.

Five years ago, the thought that PC operating systems would ever be locked to the point that you could not run "unsigned" code was laughable. With iOS, the need for heightened security was more understandable. If a virus was capable of being introduced into carrier networks and taking down half the cellular service in a country, that was a scary idea back in 2007. Forward-thinking people could see where Apple would be heading in the future, after the iOS App Store started raking in the bucks.

Not to worry, the diehard Apple defenders told us, Apple would NEVER make OSX a walled garden. Apple was supposedly well aware that users wanted to be able to install the apps of their choice and tweak their systems.

Fast forward six years, and Apple locking down OSX the way they have iOS and making the Mac App Store the ONLY place to obtain software for the Mac looks more like an inevitability than a fevered delusion of Apple detractors.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:54 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scmacdaddy View Post
Can they not offer an in-app purchase as an upgrade and then a standalone app for new buyers?

I am not a developer so I don't know if this is possible or extremely inconvenient but it's just a thought.
This would be the option I choose to develop. Update the product itself with an "Upgrade" button, it will check if you really do own it and you'll be charged with the "upgrade" fee. Even if you have let your installed app lapse several point releases, your app would update to the newer one that has the "Upgrade" button, then you can in-app purchase the upgrade.

However, in-app purchases (if I remember correctly) can't update the core, they are just add-on's. So this wouldn't really be an option. BUT it can give you a redemption code which I do believe you can redeem for a discounted price. I think that is still in place but I haven't written an app with redemption codes so not sure.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 06:59 PM   #21
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Well thats a douche move
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 07:06 PM   #22
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Do they sell any Consumer Products?
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 07:07 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scmacdaddy View Post
Can they not offer an in-app purchase as an upgrade and then a standalone app for new buyers?

I am not a developer so I don't know if this is possible or extremely inconvenient but it's just a thought.
I see no reason they can't offer upgrades through the App Store. It sounds to me like they just want more traffic to their website.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 07:08 PM   #24
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Ah, the old walled garden.

If the numbers swing over to Android play store im sure some developers will forgo the App store due to the nazi style control apple wants.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 07:13 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Adam552 View Post
The idea with the App Store is that when you buy a piece of software, future updates are included in it and there is no confusability with different versions of the same software.
Cool, so as I bought Mountain Lion from the Mac App Store, Mavericks will be free for me?
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