Paid Apps: How much are you willing to pay?




By Thea Neuman (Google)

One question that has been a part of almost every debate concerning apps is: How much a customer is willing to shell out for an application. The modern mobile users range between those who are willing to pay as much as it costs them to find a solution to their problem and those who are always looking for the cheapest (better yet, free) alternative. Both groups have their own rationale but what it comes down to is how much you are willing to spend for the entertainment or services that the game or app has on offer.

Before talking further about the paid apps, we need to consider the beginning. We can say it all started with BlackBerry 4.XX applications like Alarm Pro or BB Smart Email Viewer. Judging by today’s standards, these apps were expensive as they were beyond $5 each but the point to be considered is that they both offered a solution to major problems of BlackBerry users of that time. Thus, their high price was not an impediment in their sales. People gladly shelled out what was asked to buy the apps. However, in the beginning, such high pricing was not uncommon for app developers as there did not exist such huge selection apps like today and also, they solved a problem or filled a void for BlackBerry customers.

We can even consider the themes for devices based on BlackBerry OS 4 or 5. It was not uncommon for the themes to make into the market with a listed price above $7. Moreover, getting hold of a theme at $4 or $5 was considered to be a good bargain. If we look at the themes in market today, any theme priced at $5 will have no takers.

Today, users always look for free or less expensive apps which they are going to acquire for casual use. The fact that most paid games retail at $0.99 or $1.99 shows that users don’t hesitate to pay a dollar or two for an app that they will use extensively. The real problem arises when the app comes at an above average price. This is when the user questions himself whether he really needs the app or not and in most cases, he searches for a cheaper alternative.

Paid Apps: How much are you willing to pay? Going to BlackBerry World and looking at the top selling paid apps, we realize that some of them like BeWeather Pro 10 ($4.99), Neutron Music Player ($4.99) and Photo Studio Pro ($3.99) are priced on the higher side of $2.99 mark. Despite being priced high, these apps have a niche market or are a solution to some significant problems for BlackBerry consumers. Thus, their high prices do not check their rising sales. Many users are willing to pay high prices for an app if it is good at what it does and has great support. However, it is a fact that there exist a large number of users who will not pay more than $1 or $2 no matter what the app has to offer.

Everything being said and all sides of the arguments considered, while some apps are overpriced to some and value for money to others, some are priced way above their worth no matter how you see it. So it all comes down to you, the prospective buyer, and the app that you are going to buy.

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