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>All they had to do was recompile the app and potentially fix a few small bugs.

That's all they had to do eh. It's all so simple.

>If they are unhappy with how much money they are making then they simply need to raise their prices.

Haha. Or charge for upgrades?

The 99c app business, is shit-business. I feel for app developers. You can't build a company around that price point. Either you charge more or you go down the recurring revenue model. Neither is easy. If you're a game developer you go freemium, and you try to squeeze as much revenue out of your customer base.

> Haha. Or charge for upgrades?

Actually, there are many people (me included) who don't mind paying 10$ for a game, but avoid freemium games like the plague. So there is a psychological difference between raising up-front prices and upgrade pricing, even if I spend the same money in the end.

I hear ya. My first experience with freemium was TF2 and I was a fan. I thought Valve made it work. The game was great. You can choose to pay for hats and upgrades but if you didn't, it's still super fun. It doesn't take that long to find some cool weapons and gear, and it doesn't take that long to craft or trade for anything you need. I've actually put in around $20-30 because I just wanted Valve to have some money, given the amount of enjoyment I got out of the game.

The problem is that freemium no longer works like this. Instead of it being a business model ("this is how we sell our game"), it's a core aspect of the game. Instead of designing a game to maximize fun, the gameplay is designed to suck out as much money from the customer as possible. I loved the original PvZ. It was a fun game, with fun challenges and I got tons of hours of enjoyment. I downloaded the freemium update (not even PvZ 2, but an update to the original), and now it's all repetitive grind in order to get you to the point where you'll use your credit card to skip over the purposely tedious parts. Who designs a game to be purposely tedious!! Freemium devs do, that's who. It's insane! Shit. What a terrible genre. It should die in a fire.

>So there is a psychological difference between raising up-front prices and upgrade pricing

I know. That sucks. The reality may be that freemium is the only way you can make money from the app store. The typical app store price-points (99c - 4.99$) are not enough to make any sort of money and to build companies around. And for some reason, no game studio feels like they can charge a proper $10-$50 price for a high-quality AAA title. And now, apparently charging $1 for an app upgrade is a big no-no as well (prior to this appstore business, that's how all software was sold. You buy version 2 and you then you pay for version 3). And that sucks.

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