Posts Tagged ‘premium’

A third way to make money from mobile apps

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

First up, I consider Overcast the best mobile podcast clients currently available. Marco Arment’s client has grown over the years and developed almost every feature that I could want. The only trouble he’s had is trying to create a solid income from it. Following the initial one-year subscription model, then a patronage-based model, he’s now looking at a third option:

Ads are the great compromise: money needs to come from somewhere, and the vast majority of people choose free-with-ads over direct payment. Ads need not be a bad thing: when implemented respectfully, all parties can get what they want.

Most podcasts played in Overcast are funded by ads for this reason, and as a podcaster and (occasional) blogger myself, I already make most of my income from ads.

I’m far from the first one to try an ad-supported app — among many others, my co-host on Under The Radar, David Smith, now makes the majority of his App Store income from ads — and it’s unwise to rule out any reasonable business model in today’s App Store.

So I’m trying ads in Overcast: simple, non-animated, mostly-text banners on the main list screens that unobtrusively scroll with the content.

Arment has kept much of discussion over the app’s development and business models on his blog, and I hope that he finds true success with Overcast. Needless to say I’ll be paying the premium to remove apps (I’m so old-school sometimes) and watching the continuing story with interest.

Can Spotify in the US convert enough users to subscribers?

Sunday, January 8th, 2012

Remember when Spotify couldn’t get into the US market because the major labels in the US didn’t think they could convert enough of the free users to premium members?

It’s crunch time, as the six month “unlimited streaming” period comes to an end and Spotify fans in the US will be asked for $5 a month. How many of the subscriber base will move to the “income” column… and will it be enough to cover the minimums that the major labels have likely asked for?

Spotify shows that the music industry has got it wrong

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

The news this morning that Spotify has tweaked the membership options of the online music service has been tweaked has drawn equal comments that “this is the end” and “congratulations on the innovation.” As with everything I suspect the truth is somewhere in between.

I’ll leave the discussions of what the membership changes mean to Spotify as a business to other sites, but what I would say here is that if Spotify, which has a strong membership who are happy to pay £10 a month for online music – and that still isn’t enough to satisfy the big music labels and their voracious appetite for profiting from “Hot Rocks” by the Rolling Stones for the umpteenth time, then perhaps Spotify isn’t broken, but the idea of the big labels and a cash cow is.

After all, here’s a young company offering you some money from music listeners when your own Vice President says that “you are not going to stop music piracy”.

Wouldn’t it be far better to settle for a bit less money than you are used to, rather than running your company into the ground over the next ten years?