The good people over at AppCraver read my blog post about pricing and asked to do a short interview. They asked some great questions that further illuminate the challenges iPhone developers face. If you’d like to take a look you can find the whole article here.
Software in General
AppStore Prices – Is Cheaper Really Better?
Over at the Apple iPhone Group at Yahoo, a discussion has cropped up about application prices in the AppStore. We think (and hear) about this a lot, so I want to take a minute to talk about application pricing (on any mobile platform). It is a topic that is important to developers, retailers, and customers alike.
So, if you’re curious to hear a developer perspective on pricing, read on after the jump! [Read more…] about AppStore Prices – Is Cheaper Really Better?
eWallet for Mac Update
Just a quick update on eWallet for Mac. Contrary to what I’ve seen posted in some of the blog comments, we are in fact making eWallet for Mac. As a matter of fact, we’ve ALWAYS planned to make eWallet for Mac at some point. This is something we’ve had in the works for a few years – pre-iPhone even. If you want to know more about eWallet for Mac, check out the rest of the post after the jump!
Does iPhone User = Mac User?
There is a perception out there that iPhone users are Mac users. Now before I say more, let me make it clear right now that this is NOT a “Which OS is best?” article. From a business perspective, the quality of the OS doesn’t matter to me as much as how many users of a particular OS are out there, and whether they will buy our software. I PREFER a high-quality OS because of the cool stuff we can do with it, but in the end its about which OS will pay the bills.
O.K., Disclaimer complete!
I’m still looking for a solid study on this, but from everything I’ve seen so far (based largely on our own sales information) it just isn’t true that iPhone User = Mac User. I think part of the reason for this is that according to one estimate, the total number of Mac users in the world (adjusting for recent increases in market share) is around 22,750,000. This doesn’t adjust down for the number of these Macs that are sitting on desks in computer labs of schools. So the number is probably lower. We’ll go with it though.
The total number of iPhones expected to be sold by end of this year is at least 14,000,000. This doesn’t account for the fact that a lot of the 3G sales were 1st gen users replacing their old phones. Still, like the 22m number, we’ll go with it.
So, what is a reasonable estimate for the number of Mac users who are buying iPhones? 20%? I’m betting this is high, based on what I know about smartphone ownership in general, but let’s go with this as a conservative number. I say conservative because 20% is 2 to 3 times the marketshare (depending on the estimate you use) of Mac in the computing market. So with 20% adoption rate I’m suggesting that Mac users are 3X more likely to buy an iPhone than a Windows user.
So, even at 20% adoption rate among Mac owners, this means that only 4.5 million of the 14 million iPhone users have Macs. That means that twice as many iPhone users have PCs. Throw in the fact that we also have a VERY big Windows Mobile market, and you can see why Windows has to be our first priority. To put it simply, Windows iPhone users are (at the moment) still where the money is.
At the same time, we absolutely see the value of Mac as a platform for our products. (I just saw a new build of eWallet for Mac the other day and it’s really coming along.) The reality though is that Mac isn’t a “core” platform yet. It falls into the “emerging” category. Of course as you all know, we don’t ignore emerging markets. Where you go, we go. It’s just that most folks aren’t there yet.
I hope that this article will help folks who say “Seriously, dude. Why on Earth do you have an iPhone version but no Mac version?” to better understand the numbers behind our decision making process.
My Release Philosophy
I know everyone is waiting with bated breath for the release of the sync component for iPhone. I’ve heard the grumbling and I don’t blame people for being impatient. And what I talk about here isn’t meant to make you feel happy or wash away frustrations. I just want to address these concerns, especially for folks new to dealing with Ilium Software, so you understand the way we do things.
I’m also writing this because when we first created this blog, we told you that we’d give you a little insight into what happens behind the scenes at Ilium Software. The things I talk about here really highlight the sort of decisions and challenges we face everyday. So if you’re interested, read on after the jump! [Read more…] about My Release Philosophy
The Trouble With the No Reboot Challenge
Let me start by saying I think it’s great that Mike at Mobile Jaw and Chris from GearDiary are doing this. It’s a neat idea and I’m looking forward to the results. At the same time, while I think this idea is interesting, it also has some inherent flaws. Again, I’m not saying their idea is a bad one or that the results won’t be interesting. I just feel that since our app is one of the ones being used in the experiment, and could thus be blamed if the device still crashes, that I need to say a thing or two about this idea.
So if you want to hear my take on device stability and the “No Reboot Challenge”, read on!