Earlier this month we told you about the Tweetro saga and how the developer Lazyworm Applications essentially had to give up on the free version of the app after it hit the 100,000 user limit imposed by Twitter’s strict third-party API limits. The developers resolved that they would release a paid version of the app in order to sate users who enjoyed the experience. Fast forward to last week and the app is released at a cost of $9.99, a cost many users have been shying away from.
Comments of “it’s just a Twitter app” and “why would I pay $10 for that?” have sprung up all over the Internet, so Neowin decided to find out why the developers chose such a high price point. The answer is a combination of Twitter’s limits and the developer’s own experience. The Tweetro FAQ page states:
Sure, if we sell every copy it could equate to a few hundred grand but software isn’t cheap! In reality, we’re barely covering our costs considering the project has taken us nearly 8 months to date and we plan to continue supporting it in the future.
Additionally, one of the developers expanded his thoughts further in this email to Neowin:
On a final note, it’s been interesting to find that people are comfortable with a $10 price tag for desktop applications but a ‘Modern’ store app (which works on desktop and tablets, has snapped mode, portrait mode and every other mode.. essentially acting as 3-4 apps in one) is still being lumped into the ‘0.99c’ mobile app category. I think there needs to be a change in thinking here because ‘Modern’ store applications are far more complex and unless developers are able to charge substantially more for them you’ll find that the quality of the software isn’t going to be anywhere near where it could be.
For example, Tweetro took over 3 months of design before we could even touch a line of code and the project has taken nearly 8 months to get to where we are today.. and it’s ‘just a Twitter app’. We have a lot of experience delivering Windows Phone applications and the work involved (especially from a design perspective) is substantially less than that required to do the app’s equivalent on Windows 8.
What do you think? Is $10 too much for a Twitter app and should the $0.99 app culture go away? Do you think it does more harm than good?