If iOS updates are free shouldn't OS X's be as well?

dba415

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 18, 2011
419
67
If Apple are releasing iOS updates, which contain a lot of new features which are sometimes drastic, for free for iPad and iPod Touch, then why shouldn't OSX Mavericks also be free?
 

Twimfy

macrumors 6502a
Sep 11, 2011
881
227
UK
If Apple are releasing iOS updates, which contain a lot of new features which are sometimes drastic, for free for iPad and iPod Touch, then why shouldn't OSX Mavericks also be free?
Attachment rates.

People will hold onto a Mac for years but are likely to change their iPhone quite frequently.

Charging for OS X updates is probably a way of generating revenue from older systems. They don't need to worry about this so much with iOS as the device attachment rate is lower.

Once upon a time they did used to charge for iOS updates. I think version 2 and 3 cost money on the iTouch, I remember paying.
 

benwiggy

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2012
2,186
15
As much as the free software movement has been a good thing, it has encouraged an attitude of "entitlement" , whereby people now EXPECT software to be free and begrudge having to pay for it.
Witness the many posts that start "Can you recommend some software that performs a vital tasks for me -- oh, but I don't want to pay for it".

You should expect to pay for new software that provides new capabilities. Anything you get for free is a luxury and a bonus.

Not pointing fingers, just making a general observation. :D

Apple is a business, and they can charge whether they think will yield the highest margin. A new OS is $19.99...!!! That's an incredibly low price for what you get.
 

Ganesha

macrumors regular
Aug 4, 2009
112
1
Some might argue GAAP / SOX Compliance/Act.
Apple has themselves covered. The following has been included in all recent quarterly statements.

For sales of qualifying versions of iOS devices, Mac and Apple TV, the Company has indicated it may from time to time provide future unspecified software upgrades and features free of charge to customers.
For the last few versions of OS X 'Qualifying versions' meant all Macs sold after a certain date (up-to-Date program). However, this sentence gives them sufficient cover to make it free.
 

ThisIsNotMe

Suspended
Aug 11, 2008
1,849
1,052
An iPhone is a consumer electronics device.
An iMac is a computer.

Two very different industries.
 

robanga

macrumors 68000
Aug 25, 2007
1,657
1
Oregon
A big reason there are differences is accounting issues.

You have to withhold revenue reporting whenever you promise future software functionality on tech. This has been true for some time.

Every public company has to decide on a product by product basis, which software updates will be free, and then you often can only claim revenue amortized over the "life" of a device. This could be 24 months for a phone. Its kind of like treating hardware as a subscription service.

When you ship a computer and then charge for future updates, you can often claim it is "done" and claim 100% of the revenue from the day it ships.

This is part of the complexity that SOX has left us.
 

ValSalva

macrumors 68040
Jun 26, 2009
3,744
195
Burpelson AFB
An iPhone is a consumer electronics device.
An iMac is a computer.

Two very different industries.
True. It's great that Apple doesn't charge for iOS updates. It makes life easier for developers because the vast majority of people upgrade to the most recent version of iOS.

The Mac is more mature. It doesn't matter as much if not everyone is using the latest Mac OS as it does for iOS.
 

travisbrowning

macrumors member
Jan 28, 2013
71
1
Fort Walton Beach, FL
I'm going to say the App Store plays a huge role in the pricing scheme for the OS. Apple makes huge revenue off the App Store for iOS, its easier to price the OS lower (free). If I recall correctly, Mac App Store came out with Snow Leopard, which is right around the time we saw the pretty big price drops on Mac OSX. I think Apple has realized thats the easiest way to beat piracy, is to make it easy to buy and cheap, we saw huge price drops on Logic, Final Cut and Aperture when they hit the app store.



This is all speculation, I drank a lot last night, I haven't had my coffee. I may have some facts wrong.
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
As much as the free software movement has been a good thing, it has encouraged an attitude of "entitlement" , whereby people now EXPECT software to be free and begrudge having to pay for it.
Witness the many posts that start "Can you recommend some software that performs a vital tasks for me -- oh, but I don't want to pay for it".

You should expect to pay for new software that provides new capabilities. Anything you get for free is a luxury and a bonus.

Not pointing fingers, just making a general observation. :D

Apple is a business, and they can charge whether they think will yield the highest margin. A new OS is $19.99...!!! That's an incredibly low price for what you get.
You make some good points. From my point of view, software should be reasonably priced. I think most Adobe products have gone beyond reasonable priced. OS X upgrades are more than reasonably priced.
 

Lolito

macrumors 6502
Mar 20, 2013
392
27
here
I´m sure we pay for the OS when buying the machine. OSX is far more expensive than 20$. I would say the 20$ is an update price, as they don't sell macs without OS.

Should be free? Well, right now, for those who want, they could pirate it so easily, but that is ilegal. so yes, it should be, not free, just free to update let's say.
 

benwiggy

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2012
2,186
15
Should be free? Well, right now, for those who want, they could pirate it so easily, but that is ilegal. so yes, it should be, not free, just free to update let's say.
Are you saying it should be free, or not? :confused:
As already said, the true price of OS X is included in your hardware purchase. Point updates are free; new versions you have to pay a tiny amount.

Leaving to one side the fact that Apple has more money than God: writing software costs money. People are paid salaries; they require offices, watercoolers, stationery, computers, teabags, etc to do their job.

I personally don't want to live in a world where software development, literature, poetry, music, etc, etc, is all done as a hobby by amateurs in their spare time, because there are no jobs doing those things, because no one believes they should pay for them.

You want what someone else has done: you pay for it.
 

Oridus

macrumors 65816
Oct 8, 2012
1,031
915
I personally have no qualms in paying $20 for an OS update.... Unlike the $100-$200 for windows
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,051
30,972
Boston
iOS updates are free because Apple is able to right off the cost as it considers the iPhone a subscription based sale.

They cannot do so with OSX, additionally updates to OSX are free, you only have to pay for point upgrades, i.e., 10.x

Finally since apple dropped the price of OSX from 125 to 20 (and probably 30 in Maverick's case) why are so many people whining about paying 30 dollars for a modern solid operating system. Consider what Microsoft charges for their upgrades, night and day.

If anyone is unwilling to upgrade (and its their right) then no one is holding a gun to their head. Just don't upgrade.
 

Andy-V

macrumors 6502
Oct 1, 2007
390
116
With the very minor upgrades each release has, it would be nice if Apple gave something like 2 years of free OS X upgrades with every new mac purchase.
 

benwiggy

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2012
2,186
15
Pay if you want, or pirate it if you want.
If anyone downloads a pirated version of an OS, they are a fool, as well as a sponge on everyone else.

By definition, such sources are not trustworthy, and the OS installer package could well have been modified with malware.

If someone really thinks they need/want the software, but aren't prepared to pay $20: I wonder what they would pay $20 for?
And what they would expect to be paid for what they do?
 
Last edited:

HenryDJP

macrumors 603
Nov 25, 2012
5,084
829
United States
I cannot believe the multiple threads here with people expecting OS X upgrades to be free. :rolleyes:. iOS generates revenue 24/7 with customers paying monthly recurring charges to their iPhone carriers which Apple gets a piece of plus more people are buying iPhones at a constant then they are buying new Macs. Only the world of geeks are consistently buying a new Mac every year.
And thanks to the Hackintosh community I wouldn't be surprised if Apple ever gives OS X for free. I mean, why should the company give a free OS upgrade to people who don't even buy Macs?
 

Lolito

macrumors 6502
Mar 20, 2013
392
27
here
I cannot believe the multiple threads here with people expecting OS X upgrades to be free. :rolleyes:. iOS generates revenue 24/7 with customers paying monthly recurring charges to their iPhone carriers which Apple gets a piece of plus more people are buying iPhones at a constant then they are buying new Macs. Only the world of geeks are consistently buying a new Mac every year.
And thanks to the Hackintosh community I wouldn't be surprised if Apple ever gives OS X for free. I mean, why should the company give a free OS upgrade to people who don't even buy Macs?
That was truly funny: so u really think hackintosh user buy osx???? LOL!!!