Boinx Being Smart Re: Mac App Store
I received the following email from Boinx Software and because it, and Boinx in general, are a great example of a company behaving in the ways I advocated in my yesterday post about the Mac App Store, I am posting it here by way of example.
Expect this kind of behavior and transparency from the companies whose products you buy and accept nothing less.
Note their transparency, their careful walking of the line regard’s Apple’s policies and confidentiality without taking all the heat for limitations imposed by Apple. Go look at their web site. Note also their decision not to forego direct distribution even as they expand into the Mac App Store. Note that they were able to contact me because they maintain a relationship with their customers and while they do announce, they are not spam-like in their frequency of broadcasts. (I could wish for some tweaks to their emailing methods like a text only option and not using a third party provider but that’s a topic for another day.)
I’m going to hope they decide their forthcoming “App Store Exclusive” experiment goes well for them but that they elect to sell the forthcoming product directly too.
————-Email From Boinx Below ————
Questions regarding the Mac App Store
Dear [customer name],
2011 is off to a good start with the launch of the Mac App Store.Steve Jobs even quoted me in his press release!
Many of you have contacted us with questions regarding the Mac App Store. I decided to write this email because the answers to your questions are probably of interest to all of our customers!
Here are some of the questions we have received from customers:
Q: Are you going to continue to sell your products outside the App Store?
A: Yes. All currently available products will continue to be available through our website. However, we are going to announce an exciting new product soon which will be available exclusively at the Mac App Store to begin with, because we want to try out this path of action.
Q: I noticed that the apps in the store are newer versions. Are you abandoning customers who bought the apps the traditional way?
A: No way! For the launch of the App Store, we had to submit new versions of our products. Those do not have new features except for the licensing stuff that had to be added for the App Store. The versions available from our website will be updated ASAP. In the future, because of the App Store approval process, it might be that some versions are released first outside the App Store, some will be released simultaneously, but overall the goal is to keep everything in sync as much as technically possible.
Q: Why are the prices different between the App Store and your website?
A: The Mac App Store does not allow us to set the prices arbitrarily. We chose the “tiers” that are closest to the pricing on our website. Over time, we will harmonize the pricing.
Q: I bought FotoMagico Home on the App Store. Can I upgrade to FotoMagico Pro?
A: No. Unfortunately, the App Store does not allow for cross- or upgrades. For the time being, this remains an advantage of buying the apps from our website instead of through the Mac App Store. The unofficial way is to request a refund with Apple and repurchase FotoMagico Pro from our website.
Q: Why is FotoMagico Pro not available on the App Store?
A: Currently, FotoMagico Pro comes with plugins for Aperture and Final Cut Pro. The App Store submission guidelines prohibit an app from installing plugins anywhere on the system. Until we figured out a solution for this, FotoMagico Pro will not be available on the App Store.
If you have further questions, please feel free to tweet, post on our Facebook wall or send them by good old email.
Due to the great efforts by the Boinx team, there are currently four Boinx products available for you to purchase on the Mac App Store:
List of Boinx Products Goes Here
This is an exciting new beginning. Sales are going really well, both on the App Store and through our traditional channels, making sure that we can continue to develop cool Mac software.
Happy New Year!
Oliver Breidenbach on behalf of your Boinx Software crew
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End Boinx Email
DISCLOSURE: I have been given NFR licenses for a subset of Boinx products as a promotional gift for my participation as Macworld Expo Conference Faculty in past years. I have also met and spoken with Oliver and Achim at some length at several Macworld events. I l like them, I like their products and I like the way they run Boinx. I have bought, specified and used several of their products on various personal and professional projects. I am not, and never have been on the payroll. I do not own any stock.