Apple Prevents Omni Group From Offering Discounted Mac App Store Upgrades

NewImageLast week, The Omni Group released a program called OmniKeyMaster that would allow users who purchased older Mac App Store versions of the company's software to purchase discounted upgrades in the future, directly from the company.

Today, the company said it would be unable to offer upgrades to Mac App Store customers because of Apple's App Store policies.

My apologies: I’m afraid we will not be able to offer upgrade pricing to our Mac App Store customers after all. So long as we continue to sell our apps through the Mac App Store, we are not allowed to distribute updates through other channels to apps which were purchased from the App Store.

We still feel upgrade pricing is important for customers purchasing serious productivity software, since the initial value received from purchasing an app like OmniGraffle or OmniPlan is much different from the incremental value of upgrading that app from version 5.0 to version 6.0. We will continue to ask Apple to support upgrade pricing in the App Store, and I would encourage others to do the same—but until that happens, upgrade pricing will only be available to customers who buy our apps direct from our online store.

A number of developers have asked Apple for the ability to offer upgrade pricing to purchasers -- a very common software pricing strategy -- but the App Store requires that upgrades either be offered for free to existing owners, or sold as a completely separate offering on the App Store, at the same price for all customers, new and old.

Red Sweater Software's Daniel Jalkut called the move a "chilling message from Apple" and filed a bug report with Apple requesting upgrade pricing support for the App Store:

The impact of Apple's continued lack of support for upgrade pricing has been increased by an apparent effort on Apple's part to enforce 3rd party developers trying to accommodate upgrade pricing through their own means:

http://www.omnigroup.com/blog/entry/update-no-upgrade-pricing-for-mac-app-store-purchases

Most of us Mac developers are loyal Apple fans who would like to support the Mac App Store and keep our customers who purchased on the Mac App Store within that system. By not supporting an upgrade mechanism for these customers Apple leaves us in a position where we're forced to either treat Mac App Store customers as 2nd class customers or to forego across the board the expected compensation for major upgrades to our applications.

Apple has moved away from upgrade pricing in recent years, choosing instead to slash the prices of its major software titles instead of offering discounts for current owners. Final Cut Pro X, for example, costs $299 while its prior version was $999.

Top Rated Comments

goobot Avatar
110 months ago
I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.
That's the user's choice, not everyone needs to be babied. All this says to me is apple is becoming a control freak and is only going to make their platforms more and more closed.
Score: 51 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rwilliams Avatar
110 months ago
Buy straight from the developer. No need to deal with the Mac App Store if you can get a discounted version elsewhere. There are certain developers that offer their software on the MAS, but I still go to their website because of discounts, access to betas, etc.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
shareef777 Avatar
110 months ago
Personally, I'm sick of these 'upgrades' when most of the time it's just bug fixes and compatibility support. Might as well sell your software as a subscription.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NightFox Avatar
110 months ago
The idea with the App Store is that when you buy a piece of software, future updates are included in it and there is no confusability with different versions of the same software.

Cool, so as I bought Mountain Lion from the Mac App Store, Mavericks will be free for me?
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
I.Love.Apple Avatar
110 months ago
I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.

They (the developers) don't mind selling upgrades via App Store. The problem is that Apple does not support the notion of paid upgrades.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
orangebluedevil Avatar
110 months ago
I mean, this makes total sense, sorry to say. You can't have users buying Apps through the App Store, then updating that App elsewhere. It removes the customer benefits of security, ease of updates, and security. Oh, and security.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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