Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by admin.androidsl...@googlemail.com » Mon, 27 Apr 2009 17:17:48 GMT


Sponsored Links
 Proposal to Google engineers :

- Apps should be published as a single apk, both free and paid version
- There should be an API within the app to confirm whether user is a
free or paid user and disable / enable functionality accordingly
- There should be a screen that can be called from the app which
allows user to upgrade to the full version with a single click (this
may be a callout to the normal Google Checkout payment screens and
then return back to the app)
- No need to re-download the apk - just start it again with the new
settings

Advantages :
- Android market not flooded with duplicate versions of each app
- Devs can issue single update which will upgrade both sets of users
- Makes it easier / more enticing for users to upgrade to full version
as just single click
- No new download required on upgrading to full version
- Saves devs time in having to produce and maintain 2 versions of each
app!
- Allows automatic sharing of data between free and paid versions of
app
- Significantly reduce refunds as apps should all be testable before
payment made

I can't see many downsides to this idea, so if it is not too difficult
to implement, could the Google engineers please consider this
proposal.

I strongly believe it will help advance the Android Market above
competing app stores. I would like to hear other devs thoughts on
this.

p.s. I posted this once before but there was a typo in the message
subject (I said 'some' apk, rather than 'same' apk) that I was later
unable to change. I don't think it got the response it needed, given
the issues it raises could easily be addressed on the Android Market
and help develop the platform.

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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Al Sutton » Mon, 27 Apr 2009 18:05:43 GMT


 I've been given the impression that something like the AndAppStore licensing
system is in the works for Market. I'm not sure how close the solution will
be to what we offer, but hopefully it will be close enough to offer variable
feature sets and device/user/phone number locking which provides enough
functionality for a single apk to switch on and off features as and when
users get licenses for them.

Beyond that it's a matter of handling payments and upgrades in a sane way.

Al. 
---

* Written an Android App? - List it at  http://andappstore.com/  *

======
Funky Android Limited is registered in England & Wales with the 
company number  6741909. The registered head office is Kemp House, 
152-160 City Road, London,  EC1V 2NX, UK. 

The views expressed in this email are those of the author and not 
necessarily those of Funky Android Limited, it's associates, or it's 
subsidiaries. 


-----Original Message-----
From: android-discuss@googlegroups.com
[mailto:android-disc...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of
admin.androidsl...@googlemail.com
Sent: 27 April 2009 10:18
To: Android Discuss
Subject: [android-discuss] Combining free and paid versions of app into a
single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers


Proposal to Google engineers :

- Apps should be published as a single apk, both free and paid version
- There should be an API within the app to confirm whether user is a free or
paid user and disable / enable functionality accordingly
- There should be a screen that can be called from the app which allows user
to upgrade to the full version with a single click (this may be a callout to
the normal Google Checkout payment screens and then return back to the app)
- No need to re-download the apk - just start it again with the new settings

Advantages :
- Android market not flooded with duplicate versions of each app
- Devs can issue single update which will upgrade both sets of users
- Makes it easier / more enticing for users to upgrade to full version as
just single click
- No new download required on upgrading to full version
- Saves devs time in having to produce and maintain 2 versions of each app!
- Allows automatic sharing of data between free and paid versions of app
- Significantly reduce refunds as apps should all be testable before payment
made

I can't see many downsides to this idea, so if it is not too difficult to
implement, could the Google engineers please consider this proposal.

I strongly believe it will help advance the Android Market above competing
app stores. I would like to hear other devs thoughts on this.

p.s. I posted this once before but there was a typo in the message subject
(I said 'some' apk, rather than 'same' apk) that I was later unable to
change. I don't think it got the response it needed, given the issues it
raises could easily be addressed on the Android Market and help develop the
platform.




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Sponsored Links


Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by CnmJbm » Mon, 27 Apr 2009 21:08:43 GMT


 a wonderful idea for android and developers !



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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Nanard » Mon, 27 Apr 2009 22:01:59 GMT


 I also vote for this feature to be added in next SDK.
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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by admin.androidsl...@googlemail.com » Tue, 28 Apr 2009 00:39:14 GMT


 Great so thats 6 devs already who support this idea (myself
included)!!!

So Google Engineers - we know you are doing an excellent job and we
know that you are running on empty right now to get Cupcake out the
door. So its understandable you won't want to implement this right
now.

But could you put a proposal of this nature on a timeline for a future
version of Android?
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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Androman » Tue, 28 Apr 2009 20:56:39 GMT


 This is great idea and I hope that Google will also implement solution
that Al mentioned here. Also it would be great to allow developers
from other countries to sell applications. Right now it is only USA
and UK developers that would benifit from this feature...

On Apr 27, 6:39pm, "admin.androidsl...@googlemail.com"


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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Jay-andro » Tue, 28 Apr 2009 21:41:57 GMT


 +1

Completely agree and support this proposal.
- Would free developers from gunkwork and let them focus on features.
- More usable for users by reducing clutter on AM and device.
- Another advantage is that it prevents the situation where the user
forgets to remove the free trial product after purchasing the full
product, and if you have background processes or phonelisteners, they
collide. Worse still, some users delete the paid product and wonder
why they are still getting purchase reminders.

I would add to the proposal, one more strong like-to-have:

- Dynamic licensing: Upon purchase, AM (optionally) makes a call to a
URL provided by the developer, passing an IMEI# or such from the
phone. Developer returns license string. AM conveys this to the user,
who has to enter it to unlock the full version. This exchange between
AM and developer's site is secured either by source-IP restrictions or
other password known only to developer and AM.

BTW, this is how BlackBerry App World already works. They have Try &
Buy AND multiple licensing models to choose from like None, Single,
Pool & Dynamic.


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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by bobby.ko...@gmail.com » Tue, 28 Apr 2009 21:58:10 GMT


 Guys, don't know about Google engineers, but there is nothing new in
the system that you are proposing, at least to me.

I've been waiting for something like that to happen and in fact there
have been a few systems designed to work like that, but neither of
them survived for whatever reasons.

I think you are missing a key point here and it is that Google isn't
after our profits or efficiency - they are OUR worry.

Google is after creating an enviornment that would benefit first and
foremost the consumer and maybe as a remote second - the developers.

Users are thrilled by  low cost, feature-packed devices with loads of
free applications,

That's what Google is after. Given their history and corporate culture
- little as I know about it - I am not at all sure they have a clue
how they'd make money off it.

But their history and the money they sit on say that if you make a
popular product people will come to it and money will follow.

That's what are they trying to do. Android Marketplace is NOT a
revenue source for them and they hardly care to optimize the revenues
in it, especially at this moment.

it *may* become curcial eventually, but that's only if and when
Android becomes popular enough to be worth monetarizing from it...just
like with google.com.

just my 2c.




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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Androman » Wed, 29 Apr 2009 19:12:02 GMT


 ou are right. They care mor about customers than developers. For
Google would be best if they could have only free apps on market. Then
ti would be better for consumers... I guess that is the reason why
only USA and UK developers can sell applications. Because other
developers have to give their applications for free... But I also
guess that other developers may loose patience and switch to other
platforms like Symbian, WinMo, Black Berry, iPhone, Palm.

On Apr 28, 3:57pm, "bobby.ko...@gmail.com" <ko...@beiks.com> wrote:
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Combining free and paid versions of app into a single apk - a proposal to the Google engineers

by Nanard » Wed, 29 Apr 2009 21:12:26 GMT


 Another idea :

Not only the possibility to check paid/free version using internal SDK
API, but also an API which enable the application to know 'how much'
of the application has been bought.

An example :
I made a text to speech application.  Each voice (language) can have a
price, and my application could unlock languages if the user paid.

The same example can be used in games :
level 0 to 5 --> free
level 6 to 20 --> $1
level 21 to 40 --> $1 more
1 item for the role game user can be sold also.

Other kind of applications could be sold in several parts : social app
(pay to have full desc. of 10 people and have the right to contact
them), translation app (pay for new language), ...
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