Tweetie 2: ‘New App’ – Will Spit On Existing ‘Old App’ Users

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Image Source: atebits

I updated my earlier post on the upcoming Tweetie 2 for iPhone release just a few minutes ago with information on the lack of any upgrade pricing for existing Tweetie users, but I feel this merits a separate post.  According to TechCrunch, here is the deal:

The app will be $2.99, just like the first version was. Sadly, this will not be a free upgrade for existing Tweetie for iPhone users, as Britcher considers this to be (and has made it) a completely new app.

My thought is that this is a very,very,very Bad Call.  I just can ‘t find a way to think of this as anything less than spitting in the face of existing Tweetie users.

Here ‘s why I think this is a terribly bad call and why it is so disappointing and upsetting:

The blog post at Atebits highlighting the upcoming Tweetie 2 app talks about the dev ‘s recent history and almost overnight success with Tweetie “ culminating in an Apple Design Award for the app, and huge success that lead to his ability to focus entirely on the app.  That success “ I think “ was largely built via great word-of-mouth advertising from existing users “ lots of us who tweeted about and otherwise shouted about how good Tweetie was.  Offering no upgrade discount is just a slap for those who have helped make Tweetie a success.

The whole ‘it ‘s a completely new app ‘ argument seems like utter bullshit to me.  It is still a Twitter app for **** sake.  A slew of new features and functionality does not, to me, make it a different app.  I don ‘t see anything that says this is not just a very much beefed-up, improved version of an existing app “ it has the exact same ultimate purpose of making it easy and effective to use Twitter on the iPhone.

I ‘ve heard some folks compare it to a new operating system.  When a new version of Windows or Mac OS X comes out people have to pay, they say.  Right “ but there is nearly always an upgrade price for existing users, which is generally significantly less than full price.  Same with upgrades for mainstream PC software products.  When Office 2007 came out it was a new VERSION of Office, not a ‘brand new app ‘ “ and there was an upgrade cost.

I understand that Apple likely does not make any of this easy for developers.  Even so “ very, very bad call. If an ex-jailbreak developer like Snapture Labs can work out manual(and labor intensive) ways to offer a FULL, FREE upgrade from a jailbreak app to an App Store one, then a developer who cares about their users can try to work something out for upgrade pricing.  If not, then find a way to cram all the new functionality and features into the existing Tweetie app.  Do something to show you care even a tiny bit about your customers.

What do we call Tweetie once Tweetie 2 comes out?  Tweetie 1?  Tweetie Old, Abandoned Version?  Tweetie For Suckers Version?

Such a very bad call.  I was honestly looking forward to Tweetie 2.  On its merits as an app I still would be, but I ‘m not sure I can get past the horribly bad taste in my mouth on this ‘no upgrade ‘ issue.  It ‘s foul and I think if the decision sticks I ‘m more likely to delete ‘Old Useless Tweetie ‘ and not look at 2 at all.

By the way, the image used at the top of this post is from the Atebits blog post on Tweetie 2.  When I first saw it I thought it was a funny, tongue-in-cheek image.  Now it doesn ‘t seem funny at all. More like very appropriate.



  • Matt

    That's an awful lot of thought to save a dollar (lets say the discount price is 1.99 instead of 2.99). If it took you 12 minutes to write that, you could have instead gotten a minimum wage job for the 12 minutes and made the same amount of money. If a dollar is going to get in the way of you buying the app, then you obviously don't want it that much.

    How much is Brichter's labor worth to you? Or should he just give his time away?

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I give an awful lot of thought to many App Store subjects, and apps, and how developers work with users, and so on. And I enjoy writing about it. It's not at all about $1 for me, which you seem to be implying between the mention of it and the crass minimum wage reference. I'd happily pay more for his app if he wanted to hike it to $9.99 – if the features and usefulness of the app merited it, and I'd never groan about it. What bugs me is the principle of it, and the bogus reasoning offered. For me, this is NOT a new app at all. It is a new version of an app. The months of his time he has been able to devote to the app – as far as I can tell – were funded by all the users who bought Tweetie. That's how he was able to focus on Tweetie 2. Nice way to thank those users.

      • Eric

        …and the months he will spend working on Tweetie 2.1 and 2.2 and 3.0 after this will be funded by revenue from Tweetie 2, right?

        It's not about thanking users, but rather about making a living. What are the developer's options? Live off his Tweetie 1.0 earnings his whole life or actually generate a stream of income to keep developing?

      • Matt

        if you consider the past months working as funded by the Tweetie 1, then by the same logic, he volunteered to produce Tweetie 1 itself.

        More importantly, I just assumed that thinking so much about App Store subjects, you would know that this is all or nothing. See Eric's post below.

        What if Brichter started a new company, and made a new app named Treetie, with all the same features as tweetie 2. Would you buy that? If this is purely on principle, what type of principle is it to expect something for free? Maybe as an early adopter you deserve a discount, but people who have tweetie 1 will probably be 95% of the tweetie 2 clientele. Even if half the people who have tweetie 1 don't upgrade, it will still be more worth it to him to charge for tweetie 2 then to give it away for free.

        • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

          He 'volunteered' in about the same way that any independent dev does – not sure what's notable or relevant about that.

          I mentioned in the post that I realize Apple doesn't make this sort of thing easy for developers – but I don't even see any desire to seek a good offering / solution for his existing users. That is what is very poor judgement in my view. If there was even any statement of intent to seek solutions for his current users.

          When did I say I expect anything for free??? I didn't at all. I don't expect or want the app to be free. I just want to see that the dev acknowledges his current users and offers them something, anything in regards to what is an upgrade, not a new app.

          At the very least, his approach is horrifically bad PR – and I think that %age of Tweetie 1 users who will purchase 2 may well nosedive -d espite how good it sounds as an app.

        • Matt Moriarity

          As a person who bought tweetie originally, I'm actually excited for it to be available so I can get Tweetie 2. Software development is hardly an easy thing (I work as a developer), and I don't think Loren should feel bad at all for wanting to continue getting income for his hard work. We don't expect perpetual free upgrades from our desktop software (or at least I don't), I don't see why the standards should change for an iPhone app. All that does is discourage future development of what is great software, so nobody wins.

        • Joseph

          So the only reason you're objecting to the upgrade price of $2.99 is because he "claims" that it's an entirely new version of the app? So if he said, here guys, here's an "updated" version instead of "new" it would make it OK?

          I got a lot more then $2.99 worth of value out of Tweetie 1.0 – 1.3.2 (which included numerous updates with patches and new features) and I expect I'll get more then $2.99 worth of value out of Tweetie 2.x

          Plus, since 2.x will require iPhone/iPod Touch OS 3.0, he's providing a way to update the app for pre-3.0 users.

  • http://www.facebook.com/herbh Herb Hernandez

    Good post. I agree completely. This is a bad move and will come back to bit them if they proceed down this path.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/AndyM AndyM

    Ugh… I'm so frustrated by this too! I totally agree with your point that current Tweetie users have contributed to its current success and they should not have to buy a complete new version of the app. Even though the price is only $2.99, the principle is going to really piss people off. That is the culture of the apps in the AppStore. You see it all of the time. This is a really bad move by Tweetie.

    Apple is partially at fault since they do not offer a method for upgrades like this. And, even though Snapture was able to do it, I think it would be much harder for an app like Tweetie to do the same thing. I think I read somewhere that apps are allowed to give up to 100 or so promo codes for their apps. Maybe there were less than 100 Snapture users or something. Anyway, I think doing something similar for tweetie users would be very difficult to administer.

    What they should do (IMO), is utilize the in-app purchase system. They could upgrade some of the basic functionality and charge $.99 or $1.99 for some added features. That way, it is still the same price for new users and only a little extra for current users. It would take some extra coding, but at least you would not be shunning on your current customer base.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Snapture had over 500,000 jailbreak I believe. Their letter to users said it would be a whole lot of effort and labor for them to process refunds for everyone who bought the App Store app and submitted their refund claim form, but they were willing to do it because they acknowledged the importance of their user community.

      I agree that doing something via in-app purchase, or updating of existing app features, would be a good option.

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/AndyM AndyM

        oh.. cool. I didn't realize there were that many users. Then yes… Tweetie should be able to figure out something. I agree that they should get $$ for their efforts (otherwise, what is the incentive to continually develop?).

    • Joshua

      It's not possible to deliver an update to an application via In-App Purchases. Apple has explicitly banned that (not to mention there are technical issues stemming from code signing that prevent it).

      • Joseph

        Not to mention the Apple-disallowed things, it would be impossible since Tweetie 2.x is an **entirely new app**, what do you want in-app purchase to do? Store another compiled executable in the directory and when Tweetie 1.x launches, it'll subsequently launch 2.x? Wow, that's a step backwards. Would you want Windows 95 to be responsible for loading up Vista or even Windows 7?

  • andy

    Dude… you paid $3 for the first version of Tweetie. Three. Dollars. Loren has completely re-written the Tweetie code base from the ground up and has come up with a ton of new features

  • http://andy.teamsoell.com andy

    Dude… you paid $3 for the first version of Tweetie. Three. Dollars. Loren has completely re-written the Tweetie code base from the ground up and has come up with a ton of new features, and you can't pony up $3 to support his work?

    I guess the problem I have with your complaint is that this is an independent developer. His sole income is from software he develops and sells directly to his customers. He put out some truly amazing software, sold it for REALLY CHEAP, and you expect free updates for life?

    • Eric

      Good point.

      The iPhone presents an interesting challenge from a development standpoint. On the one hand, the market is considerably larger than the Mac. On the other, it's harder to get your app noticed, and there is a race-to-the-bottom in pricing. Nobody sells Mac apps for $2.99 or $0.99… you can't make a living off that.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      As I said in reply to Matt above, it is not about $1 or $3 for me. It is about how a developer treats his existing customer base. Raising the price of his app is fine by me. Tweetie 2 sounds eminently worthy of a higher price than $2.99 – but the point is existing users should get a break on whatever the new app is priced at. I do not expect free updates for life, for this app or any other, and have never said anything like that. I've simply said you don't spit on your existing users – the ones that allowed him to become a full-time independent developer. In fact, come to think of it, apart from any discount on an upgrade – where was even any mention of thanks to his users who took him to such great success, in that blog post? There was none. That's a pretty good indicator in its own right.

      • http://www.facebook.com/refulgentis James O'Leary

        There's absolutely no way for him to do anything other than what he has done and obtain revenue from users going from Tweetie 1 to Tweetie 2. There's no option for a discount, no way for him to process discounts, no way for him to offer upgrade pricing to 1.0 users while charging people who buy 2.0 a new price.

        If you disagree so strongly, I wish you'd offer an alternative, or lay the blame where it belongs: Apple. Back in _May_, when Mr. Brichter taught a guest lecture at Stanford, he mentioned how he hoped and anticipated Apple would soon fix the upgrade pricing structure (or lack thereof) in the App Store. They never did, and now we're stuck with this.

      • http://andy.teamsoell.com andy

        I guess it's the sense of entitlement that I don't understand. This isn't you doing him a favor by buying his software, this is capitalism: He made a product, you bought it. He made another product, and now he expects that you should buy it if you want it, just like with the first one. It's that cut and dry.

        You didn't buy Loren's gratitude with your $3. You bought Tweetie.

        • http://www.facebook.com/jdhesse Joshua Hesse

          I agree Andy, this isn't about $2… it's about a sense of entitlement. It's not really that different than the division between those who feel like government should give them free health insurance… and those who are happy to keep it on the free market. What people forget is that Capitalism is what made this country great. I'd like to keep it if possible! Kudos to the developer. I think I'll buy it just to support him!

      • Jeff

        So you would feel better if he said Tweetie 2 will cost $4.99 but existing users could get it for $2.99? I think that's just silly. Given all the new features he has added and the fact that he rewrote the code, $2.99 seems very reasonable to me.

  • Eric

    AFAIK, the App Store does not have an upgrade pricing feature – it's all or nothing. Faced with that choice, I think Loren made the right decision in charging a minimal $2.99 for an upgrade (as opposed to making it free or reducing the price of the upgrade *and* first purchase).

    Nobody is going to take your Tweetie 1.x away from you. If you're happy with the app, you are welcome to stick with it and not upgrade. Personally, I use the app on a daily basis, and am willing to part with less than the price of a coffee to support the developer. The new features and refinements are worth it to me.

    You say "Twitter app for **** sake", which trivializes the fact that a lot of time and hard work obviously went into the app. I'd argue that you don't truly believe this, though. If you willingly paid $2.99 for the app in the first place, as opposed to going with one of the dozens of free Twitter iPhone apps, you obviously see value in it.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      When I said 'Twitter app for **** sake' it did not mean Twitter apps are in some way trivial, at all. It was about the dev calling it a 'brand new app'. Which I think is nonsense. What I meant was it is still an app with the exact same purpose, still absolutely an iPhone Twitter client – just a much-improved version of it.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/AndyM AndyM

    One more thing on this…. I don't know if you have been following the uproar of the NetNewsWire for Mac (not iPhone) upgrade debacle. In case you haven't… you probably recall that NetNewsWire was a paid app before it was a free app. Well, now it is a paid app again if you would like to get rid of the advertising. Unfortunately, the people who paid for the app originally ($30 back then) now have to pay for it again if they would like the upgraded version! They offer no 'upgrade' pricing or anything. They are claiming that it is a new app, so they have to pay the same price as anyone who buys it today ($10). The only difference is that it now syncs with Google Reader instead of NewsGator. And, it is much more buggy in its current state! To top it off, they are shutting down NewsGator, so the older app is useless if you want to sync.

    People are furious (as they should be)… mostly in principle. I don't think people mind paying $10 for a good app or to support developers, but in principle, they should support those who have supported them and at least offer a discount of some sort! There are so many parallels between this and Tweetie. They really should rethink this or risk bad PR.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I was not aware of that about NNW for the Mac. Yikes – that does sound awful as well. Completely agree with your last paragraph.

  • http://nodpad.com Nick

    Come on now — are you seriously complaining about having to spend $3? I think it's ridiculous that there's even a complaint about the price. This is capitalism – if you don't want to buy the new version, don't buy it! I for one will be happy forking over another handful of change to support a product that I use regularly and enjoy.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Guys – I'm very happy debating this stuff – enjoying the dialog. But please – let's debate the right things. As I have stated, it is not about the $3.00. I've happily paid far more for apps and will do again in future. And if it was only about the merits of the app, by the sounds of it I'd happily pay $10 for Tweetie 2.

      For me, it is about a developer's good faith with his users. He produced an excellent Twitter app. Several other apps caught up with it and surpassed it, in the opinion of many people. Now he has produced an update – not a new app – that catches up with those others and quite possibly surpasses them. But his users of the same app, just an older version, get no discount, not even a token gesture, towards this much-awaited updated version. It's just dumb in my view.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike3k Mike Hussein Cohen

    I'd buy it.

    There really does need to be a way to have paid upgrades. This situation is bad for two reasons:

    1. Since he announced that 2.0 is going to be a paid upgrade, people will most likely stop buying 1.x until it's released, cutting off a portion of his income stream.

    2. If he didn't announce it now, anyone who bought 1.x recently would feel cheated knowing they'd have to pay again for 2.0 with no upgrade path.

    Ideally, there should be a way to have people who buy the current version between now & the release of 2.0 get a free or discounted upgrade, while others pay for the upgrade. This would be in line with most software & OS updates.

  • Hunter

    IT'S THREE FUCKING DOLLARS! RELAX!!!!

  • Grrr….

    Jeff LaMarche nails it on the head. What exactly 'entitles' you to even one minute of the fruits of his development efforts on Tweetie2? You sir, are a jackass.

    http://iphonedevelopment.blogspot.com/2009/09/sen

    I for one will gladly pay a measly three bucks for all of the effort that has gone into Tweetie2 for the iPhone, if only to thank the (Apple Design Award winning) developer for an excellent example of what the iPhone is capable of in the right hands.

  • http://www.headcasegames.com ron

    I think this is ridiculous. First off I am a dev myself, so let that color your opinion of all that I say after this. You are disappointed because of the principal that this independant developer put out a piece of software which you enjoy, worked hard to upgrade it, and is releasing these upgrades at a full price of much less than a BK Whopper + a Coke. Yeah it's trite to make those comparisons at this point but I don't care. You are upset of the principal that he doesn't give a head nod to his early supporters? Come on. The head nod is that he even puts out an upgrade at all – probably got a bunch of email suggestions "here's what we want to see in your new version" and implemented what he could to make the customer base happy. (continued…)

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      You just wiped out the reason given for not offering a discount to existing users. You called this an upgrade, just as I have. The dev's argument is that it is a 'brand new app' thus no upgrade discount. So which is it then?

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/dcneiner dcneiner

        I don't think there is any way to provide an upgrade discount in the App store model. How else could he possibly set it up?

  • http://www.headcasegames.com ron

    (continued…)

    (continued from previous)
    Yes, it has gone mad. This is why I can't really get to terribly angry at PatrickJ and those who support his side of the argument – they are the customer base, they don't understand what goes into the development and maintainence of this software, they don't care – and why should they? Fools like myself are tripping over ourselves, burning the candles at both ends, working ourselves into ill health and worse mental states like a bunch of crazed rats "buy my app!! no mine! Buy mine!! it's half the cost of the other guy's application!" At this point it doesn't even matter what it is we are selling, or even for how much, or even the quality of whatever it is. It's the illusion of "whether we are supporting our customers properly" or not at the end of the day, and that so many of us will jump through maniac hoops ("race to the bottom") only maintaiins that this is a self-fulfilling prophecy. (continued…)

  • http://www.headcasegames.com ron

    (continued – pardon!!!)
    To wrap-up, I will say this – if you are a pissed-off customer, fair enough. Just remember at the end of the day, there's guys out here like me working hard to cover so many of the bases of what we think it is that you guys want; we want you to be happy, it makes us proud to know that people are enjoying the fruits of our labor. We love hearing from you and telling us that you are satisfied and want more output from us. But we aren't doing this just for goodwill and solely that reason. Any software with a <$10 price tag is treading ridiculously close to that line, such as it is. Appreciate what we do, and we'll keep working hard to make your lives more enjoyable. Keep up with this attitude, and we just consider you a no-sale, if you get my meaning.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Ron – I spend tons of my time at this site singing the praises of good iPhone apps and developers. I always enjoy finding apps that are produced by smaller publishers or independent devs. I've posted often on how difficult Apple has made certain things in the App Store and how much sympathy I have for how hard things on for developers. I really don't think of myself as someone who is even the slightest bit 'anti-developers'. Also, I have never been one to squawk for more free apps, or to rail against apps that are priced above some of the very low de facto standard prices. I'm a very happy camper paying $10 or more for a good iPhone app.

      I also feel as if I acknowledge developers when they do well, and certainly when they provide good support to users and similar. So I feel as if I have more than my fair share of 'appreciation' for iPhone developers. But you yourself have talked about Tweetie 2 as an upgrade, and as a user I expect an upgrade to be offered at some level of discount to existing users. If that makes me 'unappreciative' then I think that's a very sad attitude for devs to adopt.

      • http://www.headcasegames.com ron

        well, it definitely is unappreciative – like I said, the work going into that new version (or "merely upgrade") is absolutely not free from the dev's side either. It is one thing when a new version, or upgrade releases, if the case is that those who bought the earlier version are now stuck with obsolete software that doesn't still perform -at all-. Or even, in some cases, if the first one was horrifically buggy and the new one magically works fine. I can see how people wouldn't be too happy about that. We are in a general situation where the line between "upgrade" and "new version" is blurry, to many people's perception (not least because of the price, lack of physical media, etc) and the result is what is happening now. Anyway I am not gonna jump on the bandwagon and say "you're stupid" because as I mentioned, there's a lot of people with strange feelings out there about how things should be (in either direction) – and we are in an early phase where it's still getting ironed out. That, ultimately, is the penalty for early adoption – and for developing in a drastically new market.

        • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

          I agree that we're in an early phase of the App Store's development (or of the development of all the new wave of mobile app stores for that matter) and that these are very interesting times. For me new version and upgrade are pretty much the same. My argument was / is with the 'brand new app' description.

          Appreciate that you're not going with the 'you're stupid' stuff.

          BTW, tried to reply to your man Jeff Lamarche's post over at his Blogger site – but got an error in 3 different browsers when attempting it – so replied to him via Twitter.

        • Nomad

          I think many of those in the "you're being unappreciative" crowd do not understand is that different rules apply to sales made different places. For example, if I buy a toaster at Wal-Mart or Target, I expect to be able to return it if it doesn't work when I get it home. If I buy the same toaster at a swap meet, I have no such expectation.

          One expectation set up by the standards of the Apple App Store is – fairly or unfairly – that upgrades will be free. It has always been thus (admittedly "always" is a pretty short time here) and therefore customers have built the expectation accordingly. They paid their original cash believing they bought both the app and any upgrades that come with the app.

          Shortsighted? Unfair to the developer? Maybe. But again, that was the way it had always worked. Few consumers will boycott Wal-Mart for other stores, just because their prices are kept low by wages that are unfair to the workers there.

          I agree that a worker is worth his wages, and a programmer has got to eat like anyone else. But he should NOT be surprised when some of his customers see a move like this as a bait-and-switch. He decided to go against the expectations of the community where he sold his app, and the community is reacting accordingly.

  • A Non Mouse Cowherd

    You sir… are an idiot.

    Agree with Jeff LaMarche: http://iphonedevelopment.blogspot.com/2009/09/sen

  • Aaron

    Really??? Complaining about $2.99? I am going to walk into my coffee shop tomorrow and complain they aren't giving me a fair shake because I paid $3.79 for my cappuccino this morning. I should get an upgrade price right? Apparently my coffee shop is not treating me well because I have to pay for a second cup of coffee. Geez… can you believe this guy?

  • matt g

    Patrick – you are retarded. $3.00. Jesus christ, you are really retarded.

  • KerryH

    As far as I can understand it, Patrick's issue is not with the $3 price tag, but the fact that the App Store (and Tweetie developer by extension) leaves a distinct choice for developers who would rather re-write their apps to take advantage of new ideas and OS features: give away their app for a while or expect their established user base to re-ante for the app. This, in my opinion shows one of the real issues with the App Store as it is: the inability for developers to adequately and directly connect and respond to the use base that supports them.

    I will "upgrade" to Tweetie 2 once it comes out. I've tried other Twitter apps, but keep coming back to Tweetie simply because it is perfectly executed and intuitive on the iPhone and just flat out pretty. Would I rather save a buck or two, sure, but the real issue is that the developer, who has put quite a bit into the new version while updating the current version at the same time, now looks like the bad guy even while doing things "correctly" in terms of how Apple dictates it.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      My issue is absolutely not with the $3. Glad someone noticed that :)

      • Ray

        Seriously, why would you say he is spitting on existing users for not offering an upgrade price when this is not possible?

        What would rather him do? Offer the upgrade for free? That's the only other option he has… so it comes down to the $3…

        How is this about "the principle" of charging full price for an upgrade when developers have no choice in the matter?

        You've ignored this point in your response, which is odd, given that's the entire point of the comment.

  • David

    So you think that because you used Tweetie 1 and maybe told another person or two (heck, even 10) that you like it, you are entitled to a discount? Sort of like an affiliate fee for 'selling' Tweetie? And all on a $2.99 app?

    You are a waste of space…

  • Sean Lindsay

    "I just can’t find a way to think of this as anything less than spitting in the face of existing Tweetie users."

    It seems like you're the one doing the spitting. Here's a couple of alternative views:

    * If this was a new, rival app, you'd call it a "Tweetie-killer", rave about the exhaustive feature list, and happily fork over $2.99.

    * Atebits has no *realistic* option to provide an upgrade path for a fee, given current App Store policy. You certainly haven't described one, in fact you've put the onus back on Atebits to figure it out.

    * The fact that Tweetie 2 is only $3 *is* Atebit's way of showing respect and thanks to their fanbase. The new price could just as easily have been more. Try thinking of Tweetie 2 as a $9.99 app that you're getting for the Early (Big)Bird price of $3.

    • http://www.intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Sean – I've mentioned in the post that I realize Apple does not make any of this easy for developers. I don't see anything wrong in 'putting the onus on Atebits' to figure something out. Figuring out something for the customers who have helped build their success hardly seems a bad way to spend a certain amount of time.

      If the $3 price is a thank you to existing users, that should have been said – would make for a damn sight better PR for them. But I didn't see any words of thanks to his customers at all, so not sure if you're right about that piece anyway.

      • Sean Lindsay

        Mea culpa, I've emphasised as fact what is only conjecture on my part. Atebits is deliberately maintaining a low price point for what is widely considered the leading iPhone Twitter app, but I have no evidence that this is intended as a gesture towards existing users.

        I think, though, that your article is entirely based on assumptions about the developer-customer relationship, specifically the assumption that the developer owes the existing customer some debt for using their app, to be repaid ad infinitum in thanks and free/discounted upgrades. You're arguing that such debt exists regardless of the customer's investment, and that failing to honour this debt is tantamount to "spitting in the face of existing users".

        I believe that, whether or not Atebits intends it as such, the low cost of Tweetie 2 effectively honours this debt. I also believe that you need to seriously re-evaluate what qualifies as "spitting in the face" in your mind.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Ragart Thomas

    Been listening for a while, here's a crack at a response:

    I will likely be buying Tweetie 2 because I was planning on trying out Tweetie eventually, and it does genuinely sound like a lot of good, smart hard work went into this version of the app. It is a pity that there isn't anything for the Tweetie 1 folk — but I really don't know how much can be done except for some sort of "crap, sorry guys" from the blog. Even that isn't really atebits' fault.

    The reason I'm ultimately okay with the news of Tweetie 2 being a whole new app in the App Store is the low price level. At $3.00, it seems like a pretty kickass normal and/or upgrade price. If the price of both Tweetie 1 and 2 was $10 a pop, then it'd be a different ball game. (And if it were actually a ball game, then I'd wonder why they would bother still calling it Tweetie.)

    Okay, back on topic. The App Store was game changing, and so are the price levels. The point that Apple doesn't make it easy for devs to price upgrades is a good one, but I think the argument that upgrade support in some form is owed to paying customers starts to lose its strength when the prices are under $5-10, and even then they depend on the kind of app (game, social networking app, utility, etc.).

  • rojocrandall

    Yes – $3 isn't much – but if this is an indication of how all updates to this app will be handled, I do not want to support a precedent of paying full price every time an update is released.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Exactly. I don't care if Tweetie 1 and 2 both cost $1. If the original app is a Twitter app, and the new app is a Twitter app, and the original has had no significant updates for many months (presumably while all effort went into V2) then this is not a good way to treat users.

      • admin

        so if Loren had taken the time to write a photo app, or something else it would be cool that he charges for that? People that paid the 'premium' price of $19.95 for the Mac version of Tweetie are getting upgraded to 2.0 for free. I thought consumer's expectation of App Store apps was weird, but I didn't realize for $3 we were getting all efforts Loren does in the Twitter world for free forever.

        • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

          Once again, I've never said that I expect or want a free update. Not forever, not even on this update. I've just said that there should be a full price for the upgrade, and a (discounted) price for current users. Nothing more than that. Same as is done with the vast majority of desktop software.

        • octover

          Then why aren't you laying the blame at Apple where it belongs. Loren has publicly stated during his presentation to the Stanford iPhone programming class that he wants to see upgrade discount paths in the App Store. I imagine he would've used them for Tweetie if such an option existed. However Apple has tied his, and every other iPhone developer's, hands on the matter.

        • http://www.facebook.com/ghoppe Glenn Hoppe

          Tweetie for the Mac costs $19.99. Most independently developed desktop software starts about there and you are correct, you often get a discounted price.

          Please, explain to me how Atebits will be able to offer a discounted price on a $3 app without the bookwork and order fulfilment costs eating away all the profit, and very likely causing him to lose money?

      • Dinu

        Did you pay $3 for Tweetie as it stood, or because you thought it was going to get even better with time? I think for most people they paid their $3 and were happy with the purchase, to then say you wanted updates doesn't seem right at all.

        And I sort of get what you're saying about the principle of things, but it really does make you seem like a nitpicker (to probably use the politest term I could in this case), when the total price is $3. What would make you happy? An upgrade price of $2.50? of $2? That is so inconsequential to anyone with the means to purchase an iPhone that it's laughable. But on the long run, it could mean a large change in revenue for Loren, who by all accounts deserves all the money he earns for what is a really great app.

        And your $3 investment in Tweetie (Tweetie Classic?) remains just fine. Nothing changes in that app, and I don't think many people have big problems with it right now. You don't get these upgrades, but it doesn't at all change the functionality of your original.

        I get what you're saying, and it's about the "principle" but I don't think many people agree with the very basis of your argument, and then beyond that, in the real world you're quibbling over such a tiny figure that it takes all the weight out of your points.

    • Matt Moriarity

      It's not every time an update is released. Tweetie 1 has been updated numerous times via normal app store updates. This is a major release, which many people happily pay for other software that is just an upgrade over the old software. That's how it works, the time put into that work has to be repayed.

    • Jeff

      I don't think it's an indication of how updates to this app will be handled. This really isn't an update – he rewrote the whole code and added so many new features, it really is a new app.

  • Craig

    Tell you what, I'll pay you for a week's worth of your time and then you can continue to work for me for free after that. Deal? I didn't think so.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Wow – talk about an apples to oranges comparison. This one feels like an apples to Ford F-150 comparison. :)

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Shobizz3000 Shobizz3000

    WOOOOWWW!!! I just sat read every comment that has been left. First off, I'd like to point out that I have NEVER seen so many comments about any other topic. Got me thinking, who do you people work for?? Where are all your comments when there is praise being given to an app, or when people have questions or need help??? People sure know how to come out to be azzholes though!
    So my thoughts on this issue are this…If I have purchased your app, I feel as though I should be entitled, for free, to all updates that pertain to that application. Tweetie app is Tweetie app, whether it has new and improved features, UI and what not. It is that particular developer's Tweetie app. Period. Calling this rather nice upgrade a 'new app' to me is BS, and was, IMO, a way for the dev to be able to cash in again. Like I said, that is just my thought. And that is the PERCEPTION that is given off by the dev not giving a head nod, a wave, a thanks guys to his existing users. And I believe that is the point that Patrick was trying to make. There is a way to be classy, even if what you have to do does step on a few toes. This is definitely bad PR for him. He may be a great developer, but he knows nothing about sales. Any successful sales person knows what wins is customer service and how those customers are treated, because they in turn become customers for life and also do alot of your advertising for you by telling friends and family.
    I'm sure it is not all his fault because Apple does not make this process easy. Hopefully they will get on the ball and do so to alleviate issues arising such as this one.
    What new precedent is this setting, and where will the line be drawn? Are small developers and companies going to start going the route of the other larger corps and other forms of media? Such as the Madden footballs of videogames. Madden '08, '09, '10? All the same game with minor tweaks and improvements that every year followers and football lovers have to pay the full retail again and again. If this trend continues and grows, before you know it the app won't be Tweetie 2. More like Tweetie '10, followed by Tweetie '11.
    In closing, I just want to leave a few words to all who left childish comments pointing out how idiotic Patrick is for complaining about $2.99. You missed the bus. The whole point flew right over your head. ANYONE who can afford to buy an iphone and pay a monthly cellphone bill can afford a $3 app 100 times over. It's not the PRICE that's the issue, but the PRINCIPAL!!!

    • Derek Remund

      It's the principal?

      What does your school principal have to do with anything?

      Or perhaps it's the principal on a loan you have?

    • isemann

      "the PRINCIPAL" being he should re-write the entire app over and over and over and update it and support it for ever and ever for no more money than your initial $3? Would you put that much time & effort in for diminishing returns?

    • Jeff

      Have you never purchased software before? Any MAJOR upgrade in features or code is not free and this is certainly a major upgrade, given the complete code rewrite.

      Oh, and it's the "principle".

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/dewjose dewjose

      Your argument makes NONSENSE.

      You are not entitled to anything other than what is guaranteed in the contract between you and the developer/company.

      He has every right to cash in again on a better implementation and new features to a twitter client.

      You are entitled to one thing: your choice "to" or "not to" buy the app.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Shobizz3000 Shobizz3000

    What new precedent is this setting, and where will the line be drawn? Are small developers and companies going to start going the route of the other larger corps and other forms of media? Such as the Madden footballs of videogames. Madden '08, '09, '10? All the same game with minor tweaks and improvements that every year followers and football lovers have to pay the full retail again and again. If this trend continues and grows, before you know it the app won't be Tweetie 2. More like Tweetie '10, followed by Tweetie '11.
    In closing, I just want to leave a few words to all who left childish comments pointing out how idiotic Patrick is for complaining about $2.99. You missed the bus. The whole point flew right over your head. ANYONE who can afford to buy an iphone and pay a monthly cellphone bill can afford a $3 app 100 times over. It's not the PRICE that's the issue, but the PRINCIPAL!!!

    • admin

      Sure that would suck if that was all Atebits was doing. I bought Madden '06 and it was good enough for me until I sold it and my 360 a couple of years later. I know guys who pay $50/year to get the latest rosters and small features. To them it is easily worth it cause they play each copy of Madden over a hundred hours. If EA sold Madden each year for $10 than I'd probably be more inclined to stay current.

      However your Madden analogy falls apart cause Tweetie 2.0 is a complete re-write according to the announcement post from Atebits. Plus you didn't pay the $50 premium for Tweetie 1.0 and expected to pay it for Tweetie 2.0. In fact Tweetie for Mac which costs $19.95 is getting the upgrade to 2.0 for free. So apparently if you are paying full price you get the upgrade for free, it's the bargain iPhone prices that have to pay for the complete re-write.

      Childish comments, ha! These are from developers who know the realities of developing for the App Store and that for $3 you are getting a great app in Tweetie 1.0 for iPhone and for $3 it's nothing to get a complete re-write. I guess to people like you and Patrick the alternative is better that Atebits do nothing more in the Twitter arena except bug fixes and maybe some small functionality updates.

    • Sean Lindsay

      This "precedent" will likely disappear at some point, when Apple recognises the need for a paid upgrade facility for iPhone apps and provides it. We can revisit this debate if Atebits has the option to charge to upgrade to Tweetie 3, and still has the audacity to force everyone to pay another full $3.

      I don't think people have "missed the point" or the principle; more likely they believe the principle is flexible enough to accomodate $3. It's a fallacious thin-end-of-the-wedge argument to criticise Atebits because of what EA does with the Madden franchise.

    • danielmichael

      You're a moron. If you reduce any argument far enough, you'll find a way for it to make sense. Early modernist Adolph Loos famous essay, “Crime and Ornament” in which he notes that Papuans and criminals have tattoos and concludes that any ornamentation is criminal, is my favorite example but you could also look to any number of early femininist manifestos relating the penis to men's desire to subjugate women.
      It's not about Adobe or Madden football. Its about Atebits and Tweetie 2, which is quite simply one of the best programs written for the iPhone. My hunch is that you have no idea how much work it takes to write software. If it's not worth $3 to you, don't buy it, simple as that.

  • LKM

    First of all, developers can't charge upgrade prices without creating a new app in the store. I'm sure most of them would love to offer upgrade pricing, but they can't, so the choice is often essentially between abandoning the app (because it doesn't generate income anymore), and creating a new app in the store.

    Second of all, it's three dollars. That's really all I have to say about this.

  • jens

    Grow up man. This is nothing new in the software industry. Companies have been doing this since they started selling software in the 70's. That's the way they fund continued development. If you're an idiot you'll sell minor improvements as new versions and eventually go out of business. Anyone using Quark or BBEdit? If your smart you release new versions with added value that your customers will be happy to buy. My bets are that Tweetie 2 will fall in to the latter category.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I'm pretty sure there are a large number of 'idiots' who have managed to offer both upgrade and full pricing levels for new versions and have still managed to do quite nicely.

  • http://www.burnsoft.co.uk Nik

    once again, Loren has got everyone talking about Tweetie…. that man really is a genius.

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  • http://intensedebate.com/people/mas90guru Wayne Schulz

    In my opinion this is more than a $2.99 issue.

    What if suddenly ALL of your apps were being released as xxxxx 2.0 and considered a brand new program with a new fee?

    I think Patrick's raising an excellent point and it's more than a "hey Mr Big Spender cough up a measly $3". What happens when iPhone growth isn't what it is today (this WILL happen). Suddenly will all your apps become abandonware and you're expected to buy the next version?

    Logically what's going to have to occur is either people are ok with upgrades that aren't free — or there has to be some type of subscription mechanism.

    • Dinu

      But as long as my current apps remain functional and aren't buggy, then haven't I gotten what I paid for?

      I don't purchase apps in hope of lots of great upgrades over subsequent months, I purchase them for their existing functionality. Though I suppose others may be different in that regard. I still think it's wrong to expect an existing app to be upgraded forever for free, which seems to be what some people are saying (though I know that's not what PatrickJ is saying).

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/Dan_Hallock Dan Hallock

        I frequently _do_ purchase apps because they show promise and I want to support the developer, and I hope for upgrades over time. But then, I don't mind paying again if they deliver on that promise, which Tweetie has.

    • Jesse J.

      You said "What if suddenly ALL of your apps were being released as xxxxx 2.0 and considered a brand new program with a new fee?"

      Well, what if they were? If the new version was worth a few more bucks to me, I would buy the upgrade. If not, I'd stick with the old one. App "upgrades" that were actually minor updates with a new fee would lose customers, and developers who added real new value would benefit.

      When it comes to new versions, bug fixes must be free but new features are a luxury.

    • http://alastairmoore.com Alastair

      What if the world collapsed in on itself? What if Apple shut down the App Store? What if the price of chicken quadrupled in price? Any more "what ifs"? Your argument isn't an argument because ALL apps AREN'T suddenly being released as brand new apps in their new version.

      This is the author of this post being a cheap/selfish bastard.

  • http://jmlumpkin.com Jon

    Im guessing your not a Mac user – the Mac OS doesn't have an upgrade path. and your examples of Office/Windows/etc is not true – they are never full rewrites of the code. Could you imagine how long it would take to rewrite Windows? or even Office?!

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I am a Mac user. I'm not a fan of any 'no upgrade price' policies, on desktop or iPhone.

  • http://mindtaker.blogspot.com/ Drunken Economist

    … and then you're going to go to Starbucks and pay MORE for their overpriced cup of joe.

    Sorry, but you're 'freetarding'. There is no free lunch, and the programmer has to eat too.

    Even if all he did was add more modules and re-factor, his time is worth it. If you don't agree, DON'T BUY.

    Your mentality is why programming moved to India, and why there are so many free craps in the crapstore.

    And no, it's NOT the principal. If you aren't willing to buy your fav developer a cup of coffee for an infinitely more useful and dare I say PERMANENT app, then you should donate your iPhone to someone who will.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Very surprised you chose the word 'permanent' to try to make a point. Why on earth would anyone think of V2 as permanent, when on V1 the approach has been to take all the nice new functionality and features it lacks, say they're a brand new app, and pretend they're no relation to V1.

      That strikes me as very non-permanent.

  • http://www.stationstops.com StationStops

    The desktop version of Tweetie is $19.95, but people are used to paying $19.95 for desktop shareware.

    For some reason, iPhone apps have been driven down to $2.99 or less – not including the 30% (!) which goes to Apple.

    So, Tweetie gets $19.95 gross revenue for a desktop sale, and $2 for an iPhone sale.

    Give them a freaking break for trying to find a way to at least charge for major updates!

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Once again, I have no beef with the idea of charging for a major update. Fine with that. My issue is with the fact that there should be a different price point for an update for existing vs. new users – something that has been a standard in the software industry for a long, long time.

      Oh, and by calling it a major update you are already agreeing with a big part of my argument – it is NOT a new app.

      • Matt Moriarity

        That's not Atebits' fault. The app store doesn't make that possible. Why diss on Tweetie when your real beef is with Apple? They don't deserve that.

      • James

        You sound like a broken record. How many times are you going to bring up the same tired argument?

  • http://www.headcasegames.com ron

    I think the point some here are missing, is that the "upgrade" or "new version" or whatever you want to call it doesn't invalidate the original. It is superior to it, but that doesn't mean that the old one no longer works. "All your apps will become abandonware [but the upgrades will cost a lot more money]" I don't think this is even close to likely. (hopefully) App prices will rise and stabilize, but with that you should expect to see more value for your money as well.

    Let's say he offered a relative discount for this new verison – say he knocked $0.11 off the price for repeat buyers. Would't that make customers even more angry, "this is a slap in the face!" They'd want it 50% off, or free, to "feel justified" in getting the new version. is it fair to charge 50% of $3 for a full rewrite, art, testing, etc?

    Anyway, I feel that this isn't worth arguing anymore – ultimately people will speak with their wallets, and if enough people protest/boycott, then that will decide the precedent in cases such as this..

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  • http://somenewstuff.com MRoselius

    Gee – VERY impressed with the profanity in your originial post Patrick. Here's a big idea – Microsoft is releasing a new version on Office next year – with completely new features, and big chunks of it re-written. Does that make Office 2007 abandonware? Or make it any less useful to you than it was before 2010 was released?

    This idea that you purchase an application and that entitles you to put the developer into some form of indentured servitude it small minded and ridiculous.

    Hey – but you found a forum to gripe – AND you got to say classy words like bs and the f-bomb….

    One more thing – if you got a quarter for everytime you used the phrase BAD CALL in your post – you could buy Tweetie 2….what a well thought out post.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I very rarely use any profanity in my posts. On this one I guess my feelings were strong enough to warrant a bit of it. I apologize if that offended you, or others. For clarity sake though, I did not use 'the f bomb' at all – the only use of that word is from a commenter.

      When a new version of Office comes out there is generally a *full* price for new users, and an *upgrade* price for users of previous versions. That is all I'm arguing for here.

      I don't see this as at all unreasonable. I'm not asking for free updates. I just don't buy the 'brand new app' argument and feel there should be an 'upgrade price' for what is a new version of an existing app.

      • http://www.facebook.com/ghoppe Glenn Hoppe

        I disagree, I do see it as unreasonable to ask for an upgrade price for an app that costs THREE DOLLARS.

        How is it economically feasible? There has to be support costs/order fulfillment costs/etc. to deal with this without a mechanism built into the app store. It's quite possible that Loren would actually lose money on every sale if he tried to offer some sort of upgrade price on a $3 app.

        Note that my opinion would be quite different if the app price was $20… which is why I'm happy to hear the Mac desktop version will be a free upgrade.

  • http://mrexd.com Matthew Rex

    It's worth the $3. I beta tested the first Tweetie for iPhone. I beta tested the Tweetie:Mac app, and I've been beta testing Tweetie 2 for iPhone (and most likely the Tweetie 2 mac as well). I have bought every single iteration of said app, and will continue to do so as long as Loren remains such a great developer, designer, and humble dude. He deserves my money, TWEETIE deserves my money.

    Yes, believe it or not, I've spent $20+ on Tweetie apps despite GETTING THEM FOR FREE AS A BETA TESTER. What did I do with my free copies? I gave them to friends and said "spread the word".

    If you're going to bitch this much over $3, then I'd consider you a sale worth losing.

    -Mrex

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I purchased Tweetie for iPhone and Tweetie for Mac. I've also purchased Twitterrific Premium, TweetMic, TweetReel, and other Twitter apps totaling more than $20. I've paid $9.99 for Things on the iPhone and $49 for its desktop version, and been very happy about it. Not sure why your expenditure on Twitter apps is relevant in any way, or mine – but thought I'd throw it out there for all those who STILL seem fixated on the 'it's only $3 – you msut be a minimum wage worker' etc. trip.

      I've never bitched over any $3 purchase. I've griped about a principle, an approach to upgrade pricing. I think if you, and from what I can gather, Loren at Atebits are in the habit of classing all users who question your approach as users who are 'not worthwhile' that does not bode at all well for your future sales.

    • http://www.intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      I purchased Tweetie for iPhone and Tweetie for Mac. I've also purchased Twitterrific Premium, TweetMic, TweetReel, and other Twitter apps totaling more than $20. I've paid $9.99 for Things on the iPhone and $49 for its desktop version, and been very happy about it. Not sure why your expenditure on Twitter apps is relevant in any way, or mine – but thought I'd throw it out there for all those who STILL seem fixated on the 'it's only $3 – you must be a minimum wage worker' etc. trip.

      I've never bitched over any $3 purchase. I've griped about a principle, an approach to upgrade pricing. I think if you, and from what I can gather, Loren at Atebits are in the habit of classing all users who question your approach as users who are 'not worthwhile' that does not bode at all well for your future sales.

      • Ray

        Patrick, you have yet to post anything relevant to the principle of "it's not possible to charge an upgrade rate". Until you do, you have no point.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/trevordickerson trevordickerson

    This is ridiculous. People pay $200-$300 on their iPhone and then complain about a $3 pricetag for a wonderful app that (I personally at least) use every single day, all the time. I'd pay MUCH more for this great app.

    • http://jmlumpkin.com Jon

      +1 Trevor!

  • Greg

    Good gosh people – this is no different than any other type of transaction in a marketplace. If you don't like the new pricing scheme, take your money elsewhere. I have twitteriffic and tweetie installed on my iphone and i actually prefer twitteriffic at this point … but who knows once tweetie2 comes out. However, I'm not jumping to pay for my tweetie2 and I do think it's a bit meh to ask people to pay again. That being said, it is only $3.

  • windog

    At least there is a warning in the App Store that suggests Tweetie buyers wait for Tweetie 2.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Yes there is. It was added last night. While development work for T2 has been going on for many months.

      • http://jmlumpkin.com Jon

        You should check his older posts – it was mentioned many months ago that Tweetie on iPhone was being totally rewritten.

      • Dinu

        I think it's fair to only add the App Store warning when the release is imminent, especially considering problems people have been having with App Store submission-limbo and all that.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/chartier chartier

    At least a $200 phone, ~$70/month voice plan, and you're complaining about $3 for an app that we use frequently throughout the day, or at least the week? This is ridiculous. You can barely get a single cup of coffee—once—for that price, or a full meal even at Taco Bell. You can only help a starving child in a third world country for three days—at most!—with $3.

    Developing apps like this takes months of work, not to mention quite a bit of collaboration between all the services they work with. My mind is honestly blown thinking about the fact that a conversation about Tweetie 2's price is even happening.

  • Mike

    Shouldn't your frustration be targeted at Apple for not providing an flexible upgrade mechanism? Or should the developer just be expected to give away his work for free, for ever?

    mike

  • j c

    IT'S THREE DOLLARS. Stop being such a cheapskate with a sense of entitlement. It costs money to write programs, much less to update them, and you want a free ride forever? Jebus, what a cheap fuck.

  • http://alex.mullr.net/blog/ Alex Muller

    For three dollars, really?

    Ok, so here’s my suggestion. You don’t buy Tweetie 2. I will buy Tweetie 2. Firstly, I’ll have a better app than you. Secondly, there are lots and lots of other people with iPhones, and some of them will buy Tweetie 2, and some of them won’t. Let’s see how the market reacts.

  • http://twitter.com/williamtm William Hook

    Holy crap, $3. Wow, I completely understand your complaint. It's not like it's a small investment or a single developer working on this alone to keep himself fed…we're talking about a massive price and a massive multimillion dollar company here.

    Oh, wait, we're not. Stop complaining about $3, a total rewrite, and shut up.

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  • http://jameswilding.net/ James

    Do you think that the new model of your old car should be free, too?

  • Astounded

    Let me get this straight:

    * Man works his ass off creating a great app
    * Man makes app available for less than the cost of a Starbucks latte
    * People use the app day in and day out and derive great satisfaction from the app
    * Man then works his ass off creating a completely new app that's even better than the first
    * Man makes this new app available for less than the cost of a Starbucks latte
    * People fly off the handle because they feel this man is somehow creating an impression that he's being unfair, even though they admit that $3 is not an unfair price

    The mind boggles

  • OHNOOOZ

    Oooohhhhh noooooozzzzz $3 dollars! The world is ending, the world is ending! How will I live? My kids, they go hungry. I might have to switch to Android or a Windows phone. I might have to get my coffee black instead of my $5 mocha.

    If only Atebits had made it free, the world would be a safer, terrorist free place.

  • Anonymous

    Wow. You are a clown.

  • http://blog.gb-studio.tv Grant

    I can't even get a good pot of tea for $3. Considering how much I've happily used the current version of Tweetie, I'll gladly plunk down an additional $3 for the new version. And if you really think that's such a bad idea, just don't upgrade.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/IanD IanD

    So you buy an app and expect updates forever? Get a grip. Don't like it, don't buy it. Apple need to allow dev's to charge for upgrades. That model works everywhere else for software far more expensive than iPhone app's.

    Can't believe you wasted that much energy on a post when it's only $3.

  • jackstwitteraccount

    I don't even use Twitter, but I will buy Tweetie 1 today even though I know 2 is coming. You know why? Because I'm not a fucking pussy that cries about $3. I'll buy T2 when it becomes available too. Thus making up for the lost sale to you and eliminating you as a factor in the equation at all. You are officially irrelevant.

  • http://wishing-stars.com Greg Maletic

    You know who contributed to Tweetie's current success? The guy who wrote it.

    So be quiet and pay the $3; it's the least you can do if you like the app. Holy cow.

  • Guest

    Just out of curiosity how much would three major upgrades to Tweetie be worth to you if you paid in advance? $10? $6? More? Less? I think perhaps if the dev was going to avoid upgrade fees he would have to charge more upfront. But you would probably think $10 is too much to pay for a twitter app. So think of it this way, you got to buy a first version of the app for a third of the price. And completely have the option to buy or not buy the next version. It is not like the functionality time bombs.

    Now if twitter has changed something in the API and you were forced to upgrade then perhaps you would have a point.

    But bottom line would you pay more up front for guaranteed upgrades? Many companies including Macromedia tried that model and it is my impression that it didn't work out too well.

  • drgardner

    "Spit on existing users"? Spit? Really? Way out of line.

    As far as this being something about "principle," it seems the only principle that's at play is the notion that having paid a few bucks for an app, you're somehow entitled to everything the guy ever produces again. There's very few other apps that work that way – in the real world, where people need to get paid.

    If you're so bent out of shape about the "principle" build your own app and give it away.

  • http://www.facebook.com/maddoguk69 Ian Davies

    You colossal tool.

  • mxcl

    A discount price would have been good faith to those of us who have bought it in the past and thus made it possible for him to continue in this line of work.

    But Apple have not made it possible to do that.

    Charging again for major releases is common in the world of software, but compared to the desktop where you pay 20 bucks plus, here it's only 3 dollars.

    So in conclusion, you're complaint is over the top, and apparently, the Internet agrees.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Dan_Hallock Dan Hallock

    A few things.

    First: Tweetie _has_ been updated for free for current users. We're on 1.3.2 now, and there's been a ton of stuff added. It's not like you were saddled with some bug-ridden, low-featured 1.0 and left to dry.

    Second: The App Store does not offer upgrade pricing. Sure, the Snapture dev(s?) figured something out, and you know, yay for them, but I'd rather my $3 went toward paying Atebits to develop Tweetie, not to develop a complicated, labor-intensive way to offer upgrade pricing.

    Third: scale your expectations appropriately to the price, dude. Price _does_ affect the principle of this sort of thing. I demand upgrade pricing in $2000 Adobe suites. I expect upgrade pricing from $50 apps. I'm mildly surprised when I don't see it in $20 apps. For a $3 iPhone app? Meh.

    This world is not yet perfected. In the meantime, give Apple a little time and space and I'm sure we'll get breathing room, give Atebits $3 and I'm sure we'll get a nice Twitter app, and breathe deeply, sip some nice tea, and I'm sure you'll feel better. And I'll bet you $3 that by the time Tweetie 3 rolls around, your wounded heart will have recovered from this offense.

  • http://www.intensedebate.com/people/Dan_Hallock Dan Hallock

    A few things.

    First: Tweetie _has_ been updated for free for current users. We're on 1.3.2 now, and there's been a ton of stuff added. It's not like you were saddled with some bug-ridden, low-featured 1.0 and left to dry.

    Second: The App Store does not offer upgrade pricing. Sure, the Snapture dev(s?) figured something out, and you know, yay for them, but I'd rather my $3 went toward paying Atebits to develop Tweetie, not to develop a complicated, labor-intensive way to offer upgrade pricing.

    Third: scale your expectations appropriately to the price, dude. Price _does_ affect the principle of this sort of thing. I demand upgrade pricing in $2000 Adobe suites. I expect upgrade pricing from $50 apps. I'm mildly surprised when I don't see it in $20 apps. For a $3 iPhone app? Meh.

    This world is not yet perfected. In the meantime, give Apple a little time and space and I'm sure we'll get upgrade pricing in the App Store, give Atebits $3 and I'm sure we'll get a nice Twitter app, and breathe deeply, sip some nice tea, and I'm sure you'll feel better. And I'll bet you $3 that by the time Tweetie 3 rolls around, your wounded heart will have recovered from this offense.

    • http://www.bclennox.com Brandan

      Dan, your third point is exactly what I was about to post.

      Patrick, what if Tweetie only cost $0.03? Would you still expect a discount of $0.01 just because of this "principle" of upgrade pricing that you've fixated on? This is not black and white. The absolute price *does* affect the significance of relative discounts. Obviously, your maximum acceptable-price-without-an-upgrade-discount is lower than Dan and a lot of others (myself included), but it is surely greater than zero, and you need to recognize that.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Well said. I agree with some of what you're saying in Point 3 and in your last paragraph.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Ragart Thomas

      very well put, Dan. I definitely think the biggest issues here are 1) Apple's lack of priced upgrade paths 2) the price of the actual app in the first place

  • Guest

    JB and install from installeous, case closed.

  • orgel

    So much whining about $3! As a current Tweetie user, it seems worth it to me, since I love the current version (both on Mac and on iPhone). Given that there aren't _any_ paid upgrades per se on the App Store, I don't see anything so bad in this. If you don't think the new version is worth $3, then don't buy it. Or you could really prove your point by purchasing a whole 'nother Twitter app. That'd show 'em. (That's the "principal" [sic], right?)

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Azathoth Azathoth

    You cheap piece of shit. You're not entitled to a discount. You're not entitled to a free upgrade. The developer is entitled to be paid for his work. Developers of free software aren't giving you your due, you fucking ingrate; they are choosing to waive what they deserve, which is their prerogative. You deserve nothing.

    What have you ever produced? What have you ever provided the world besides whiny blog posts? You think because your accomplishments as a human being — the sum total of your entire life — are worthless, that means everyone else's is worthless, too?

    Crawl back under your rock, you scum.

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  • Non-retard

    OP is retarded. Extremely, painfully retarded.

  • skibbles

    Hey cheapskate, a latte costs more then this app. Suck it up.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/wonkeythemonkey wonkeythemonkey

    You are using semantics to justify an untenable position. Because the name of the product is the same as the original with a number after it, you declare that it is the same product. What if they'd called it "Tweetie Pro" instead of "Tweetie 2"? Or how about "Tweetie Plus" or "Tweetie Deluxe"? Would you demand a reduced price for current users in that case? What if they called it "Tweetastic — from the makers of Tweetie"?

    We'll just have to wait and see how much goodwill they lose from malcontents who mutter "worst…upgrade…EVER!" as they click the "purchase" button.

  • Disinterested

    If the new features aren't worth $2.99 to you, fine, don't buy it. Now there's a 'principle' for you.

    Nothing to read here folks. Move on.

  • Mike

    I'm not at all convinced of your argument that releasing a second paid app is somehow a slap in existing users' faces.

    Are you not able to keep using Tweetie – for which you have already paid?

    Is the vendor still able and willing to correct bugs in the existing app?

    Does the utility of the app far exceed the costs you had to pay to use it?

    Are you being forced to upgrade due to some internal self-destruct code?

    Quite frankly, your central argument comes off as whiny. Sitting on the sidelines and presuming that the new app just appeared fully formed with all the new features, all the new code, design, testing, and expense and simply calling bullshit on a developer for thinking he might charge $3 for an upgrade (or in your mind $6 for two versions you expected to be bundled) seems massively uninformed.

    I could perhaps understand if you spent several hundreds of dollars of your money or hours of your time marketing his apps – but that would be a conversation between you and the author and not appropriate for a public post.

    I'm sure he has promotion codes for people that do honest and good work promoting his hard and highly skilled work. I think there's a time and place to call out unethical and unworthy developers publicly. I think you missed the mark by targeting AteBits and Tweetie for a rant like this.

  • yebot

    I bought Mac OS 8.1 many years back. Can't believe they keep charging me for newer versions. Those dicks.

  • http://www.facebook.com/angelday Sasvári József

    Dear poster, have you seen the new app to justify?

  • http://www.twitter.com/jespinoza Jose Espinoza

    I love Tweetie and will be purchasing Tweetie 2 without hesitation. I'm purchasing it because I support the outstanding work of Loren has done and I believe that it's worth my THREE dollars. Quit being a douche about it.

  • Wah Wah

    Someone call the Wahmbulence, another spoiled, self-indulgent man child is being denied his candy.

  • Accophox

    Don't installous this. Man, I cringe every time I hear that. Good software deserves your money. It's just a boot to the face for small iphone developers. And seriously, it's 3 bloody bucks for a new app. On top of a $200-400 with $70-90 in monthly fees… It's a pittance. Pay up, or piss off.

  • Cullen

    Seems to me these three pages of rabid Atebits and Tweetie defenders speaks for itself. Loren doesn't have a PR problem nor has Tweetie 2 costing a well deserved $2.99 really pissed anyone off but the OP.

    As a very pleased Tweetie customer (iPhone and Mac) I'll definitely be purchasing the new app.

  • http://randrambles.com Rand

    Who cares if it is $3 more? Tweetie is worth it. Tweetie 1 is an awesome app and way worth the money. I bet that Tweetie 2 will be evmn better, I wouldn't mind paying even more than $3 as long as it is a quality app, Atebits delivers.

  • tom

    This is idiocy. Buying an app entitles you to the app you bought. There's no birthright that you now have a perpetual claim on all work from that developer.

    Would you rather the Tweetie developer not make a major update like this because his first version was so popular that everyone bought it, so there's no money to be made with a new version? Should he switch to building some other type of app instead so he's not obligated to build you more Twittter apps so you can post about what you had for lunch?

    It's $3. Nobody is starving or dying because they can't afford this app, which in the end is mostly used to twitter about what people had for lunch, etc. It's a free country and he can charge what he wants. If you don't like the price, don't buy the software.

    I am happy to see a great indie developer continuing to commit time to an already successful project instead of simply coasting along on the first version and continuing to collect sales. We should be grateful for this work, not pissy.

  • Luis

    It doesn't matter how excellent the app is , if it weren't for us the costumers this app and the developer wouldn't be where they are. I am all for paying for the upgrade but not getting ripped off to pay again. I see this problem with many developers that have no common sense how to deal with customers just take their $$$.

    This app was made by word of mouth sales it will nose dive by the same reason "BAD HANDLING OF LOYAL COSTUMERS" word of mouth. To all the developers here get it through your head, you work hard to create awesome apps to get customers to pay in appreciation for your fantastic work. You need to RECIPROCATE to the loyal ones to keep your SALES going……

    • Metanaut

      First, it does matter how excellent the app is. That goes to answer the question, "How much is it worth to you?" If three dollars is more than you can bear, one should conclude: "Not enough." It's not like you have to buy Version 2, or Version 1 will suddenly stop working.

      Second, you're demanding some sort of "reciprocation" for "the loyal ones to keep … sales going". Truth is, you paid all of three dollars and the reciprocation is a software application that you apparently use and care about. That is called a sales transaction, separate and aside from whatever follows. No promise was made. You're suggesting that this developer provide to you all of his future work on this application for free? How precisely does that keep sales going for him? Maybe this would have you not recommending this developer's work and discouraging others from buying it? All I can say is… there's a lot revealed about people in the battles they choose. That really must be the most important three dollars you ever spent.

      It's not like this app costed $100, $50, or even $10. So while people are barking about "not the cost but the principle", they are overlooking the ridiculous "race to the bottom" that is the App Store economy that developers must find their place in. To me, it is well worth another three dollars to support and keep this developer doing what he does.

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

        "You're suggesting that this developer provide to you all of his future work on this application for free? "

        Seriously???? Jeez – read the post, read this comments thread (in several places). Read something before offering your .01. I have not ever argued for free upgrades. Not free upgrades forever, not even free upgrades for this specifc app being talked about.

        • Metanaut

          Yes, seriously! I did read the article (which is basically a rant) and the comments. I responded specifically to this one.

          Understand the developer's possibilities here. The comment I responded to demands "reciprocation" (but doesn't suggest any ideas) and the way the App Store is currently designed, the developer must either:

          1. Provide Version 2 as a free update upon the current store presence for Version 1. No money collected from the loyal owners of Version 1, which a number of people here believe wouldn't be fair to the developer.

          2. Provide Version 2 as what the App Store would consider a separate application, so that it can be sold to all users for one price: $3.00. Here is the source of the outrage, apparently?

          Granted, Free upgrades for life were not the request. But given the possibilities, what reciprocation do you propose that would satisfy you and other loyal customers? Should the developer cut you a check for the difference between the full and upgrade costs? Just curious.

          The latter of the two possibilities above is a calculated risk for the developer, perhaps, of alienating this emerging new demographic that furiously wants something back on a three-dollar product that seems to be highly-valued by its users and that they are otherwise happy with (guessing… we're all here caring about this, right?). I would be similarly outraged if we were talking about a $100, $50, or even $10 application, but we're not and there is a difference. It's three dollars. Or even less if what you're fighting for is the different between three dollars and whatever reciprocation you'd be seeking.

          Again, I suggest that it does matter how excellent the app is. $3.00 for the progress this developer is making on Tweetie is worth it to me and more than fair because I find it to be an excellent application. "Your mileage may vary?"

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  • http://kylefox.ca Kyle Fox

    It's $2.99.

    If you don't think it's worth $2.99, don't pay. Simple as that.

    I can't believe people bitch about paying $2.99 for a high-quality app that they use around the clock.

  • Wade

    I don't think my problem is having to pay more money, it's that I can't upgrade my existing app. I have to buy a whole new app, rearrange my stuff, re-fill out my multiple account details, etc. It's a pain in the ass and I think takes away from the fun experience we are used to with apps. When I like an app I will buy it because I want to support future upgrades. This is why I bought Tweetie. Now I find out I didn't pay for future upgrades, I just paid for the app and now I'm going to have to buy another version of the app if I want the upgrades. Meanwhile apps like Twittelator Pro, Echofon, etc, which I have also purchased, have offered slews of upgrades, some of them major upgrades with many new features, for no additional costs! This is what we expect from our iPhone apps. We buy an app, we expect it to be updated and improved on It's fun to check the app store and see updates are available for our apps, especially ones we paid to support.

    If an app developer continues to improve their app, more people will hopefully buy it who don't have it yet. Tweetie could continue to sell the current version at $2.99 even after upgrading it. Instead Tweetie is going to make everyone who already supported them, support them again.

    Imagine if every app we buy for the iPhone stops updating and we have to constantly buy new versions of our favorite apps. We'll be constantly deleting out the old version, installing the new version, reconfiguring things, etc. WHAT A PAIN IN THE ASS! This isn't how the apps should work for the iPhone. It should be EASY. I don't pay for apps to make my life more difficult.

  • isemann

    How many of you read the ENTIRE blog/article before going "this is BS" blah blah blah ?

    Not many of you I think so here it is, go read ALL of it.

    http://news.atebits.com/post/199400544/bigbird-re

    R!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

    Hey folks. I am amazed at how much this post seems to have struck a nerve with so many, or several nerves maybe. I think there's some decent debate here, and I know I'm thinking on some of the points that have been made that go against my point of view. I also may do another short post to try to clarify some points. For instance, I keep getting attacked for advocating 'free upgrades forever' and similar – when I have never argued for that, for this app or any other.

    In the meantime, it would be super cool if some of you could refrain from calling me every bad word you can think of and littering the comments with profanity.

    • Jeff

      POOPY-HEAD! ;)

      Honestly, if the App Store had an upgrade option, I would pay the $2.99 for the upgrade and I think Tweetie 2 would easily sell for $4.99 (or more).

  • http://www.firelabstudio.com Aaron

    This article's author, Patrick, misunderstands the overall picture. Upgrade pricing for desktop software (Adobe's Creative Suite, Mac OS, etc,) is offered to current users which have spent anywhere around $100-$1,500. The prices of iPhone apps do not correlate with desktop apps, you can't take the upgrade-price-to-full-price ratio and scale it down. The difference between full and upgrade of CS4 Design Premium is about 78%, and applying that to Tweetie would make it $2.33. You're arguing over ¢.67 then.

    Let's flip it around and look at it from a different perspective. Say you have CS3 and want to upgrade to CS4 Design Premium, which costs $1,799. If Adobe had the upgrade price at $1,796, what would you say? I bet something like, "What?! $3 is NOTHING!"

    For those saying it should be a free upgrade, that's downright insane. You may as well say that Tweetie should be free since you already own Twitterific (or other Twitter app). This isn't a simple update from version 1.0, in which case it would be free, this is a new 2.0 version with new features that are well worth the price. Try going to Starbucks and telling them you should be charged less because the Mocha is hardly unchanged from the previous one you bought, or because you're a previous loyal customer.

    Those saying it's about principal just don't get it. The desktop app market and pricing model is completely different than the iPhone's. Tweetie 2 costs $2.99, not $299, and having an upgrade path for the sake of an upgrade path would add unnecessary complication to something so simple and inexpensive. If it makes you feel better, just think of it as you got a really great software upgrade for only $3.

    To summarize:
    • Update (e.g. 1.0 to 1.1) = Free
    • New Version (e.g. 1.x to 2.0) = $

  • Jeff

    Question to the people who are complaining about being charged $2.99 for Tweetie 2. Would it be better if he changed the name of the app? Let's say he keeps the code name "Bigbird". If this app was released as "Bigbird 1.0", would that make you feel better?

    This is, based on the rewriting of the code alone (not to mention the slew of new features), a new app. Just because he's calling it "Tweetie 2" shouldn't matter. Also, the fact that there is no upgrade option in the App Store limits his choices here. Like others have said, if you don't like it, don't buy it.

  • Chris Wigley

    Dude, in the time it took you to write this post, you could have gone out and actually done some real work to earn yourself the $3 fucking dollars this app is going to cost you should you choose to purchase. I bet your the doucher who gets pissed when he has to pay for refills. And if it's the fucking principal you're after, then I suppose you should track down everyone that's ever paid you for something you've done more than once, and give them a discount or refund. People like you make me regret that everything is so easy now, that any asshole can have a blog.

  • Wade

    I think the issue most are having is we've grown used to our paid apps upgrading and updating for free. When we pay for an app, we have been under the impression that we are supporting future development of the app, and as a paying customer we look forward to these updates for free. Maybe some of you don't have iPhones and don't know how the apps have been working. I have a ton of apps that I paid for that have gone through major upgrades, for no additional cost! Now an app wants to do an update, but make me buy a whole other app? This isn't the norm and isn't what we have learned to expect from app developers. I'm not going to be happy if I have to keep buying new versions of my existing apps all the time. It makes a mess of the apps having to delete the old, install the new, etc. The app developer should sell the app for whatever price they think they need to cover future updates.

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  • Rob H

    Out of curiosity, do you make an ad-free version of your website for longtime readers who've clicked on any of your ads? If you don't, isn't that kind of greedy to want money off of people who keep visiting your site by bombarding them with… what I just counted as SEVENTEEN ads on one web page?

    The point is, no, it's not. You have a right to receive compensation for the work you put in.

    Please don't be angry at developers for requiring the same thing. There's nothing wrong or unethical about wanting to do something well and be compensated handsomely for it.

    But if you're really mad, *I'll* buy your copy of Tweetie 2. I figure the developer's worthy of his wages.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dave.ackerman Dave Ackerman

    Stop being ridiculous. It's $3. The entire app is rewritten. That's a lot of work. A LOT OF WORK. Probably more work than you can imagine.

    I'll be buying the new version of Tweetie for these reasons:
    - the developer DESERVES the $3.
    - it's going to a fantastic app that's well worth $3.
    - I respect developers
    - IT'S $3

    Worst post ever.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rgwdotcom Ricky Webb

    Independent developer makes you pay for a sizable upgrade upon an existing app that most of it's competitors have been spending the past year trying to catch up to or finally surpass.

    OH THE INEQUITY! OH THE INJUSTICE!

    Pay 29 bucks for a mostly under-the-hood enhancement to an already great OS = sweet man
    Pay 3 bucks for a significantly improved under-the-hood, feature, and UI-wise app = douchebag fag

    The real problem here is that the App Store upgrade model screws developers on monetizing development enhancements after initial release. What incentive do developers have on improving applications after they have saturated the market? None, because they can't charge for upgrades like every other sensible software model we've dealt with since the beginning of personal computers. Their only way to get around this is to release a new app when they see it as a "major release." I'd rather see developers be able to charge small fees for major revisions x.0 releases while making the new purchases pay the full price.

  • Dave

    I don't understand the whining. If you don't want to shell out a measly $3 for a better Twitter client than the one you're using — even if it's Tweetie 1 — don't buy it. While I agree that Apple should have a mechanism available to developers for paid upgrades, I don't feel slighted by this when the cost is so low. Principal be damned, keep the outrage to scale.

  • Dimplemonkey

    Can the solution be as simple as what Mafia Wars for the iPhone does? You have the app Mafia Wars, but then if you want to buy some additional respect points, you pay for a respect points app file that will update the existing app. Once it's done, you delete the respect points app. Soooooo…… Offer current Tweetie users a discounted upgrade app, priced reasonably (.99) and rewrite the current Tweetie app to version 2. New users will still pay $2.99, the original Tweetie app can be discontinued.

    In other words, he's gonna have to create an additional app. Inconvenient for him maybe but he will retain his loyal following and he can get the light bill paid. Am I on to something or am I just imaging that this can be done?

    • http://www.facebook.com/rgwdotcom Ricky Webb

      well, first of all, I don't think that is really practical: obviously there is database-side communication going on in regards to Mafia Wars. The main Mafia Wars executable and the Respect Points executable both communicate with the same data tier backend on their servers. Personally, they'd be better served adding the in-app purchase system into the game executable instead of using this hackney solution. Still, one of the basic principles of the iPhone SDK is that each app is sandboxed and can't directly communicate between each other or access each app's data. The Mafia Wars people have a database that can be communicated to by each app over a network connection. I don't think Tweetie would be served by this software model.

      Like I said, Apple does have an in-app purchase model but this model is mainly built with the concept of "consumable" objects in mind: level packs for games, live games in the MLB At Bat apps, etc. Using the in-app purchase model for core features is sketchy and would be a slippery-slope I'd prefer Apple not allow developers to go down due to the obvious bait-n-switch schemes that would be used by less than scrupulous developers.

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  • Andy Porter

    Patrick, I think you're splitting hairs on this one. It's all semantics. I read Loren's blog post, too, and didn't come to the same conclusions.

    First, "a whole new app" may refer to it being a different, separate app, not just the same app with a bunch of new features. He's simply not submitting Tweetie 2 as an update to the Tweetie app that's currently on the app store, he's submitting it as "a whole new app."

    Second, concerning upgrade pricing, in his blog post, Loren says specifically, "while it's arguably worth a lot more, I'm keeping the price exactly the same." There is your discount, Patrick. There is your upgrade price. He could charge $5, or $8, or even $10, but he's only charging $3.

    If you feel Loren still violated your principle of "throwing a nod" to, or acknowledging, his existing users, you must use a different argument than upgrade pricing, or even how he didn't actually use the words "thank you" in his blog post. (He has expressed his gratitude in other venues.)

  • punkassjim

    For the record: Tweetie's success was NOT "largely built via great word-of-mouth advertising from existing users."

    Tweetie's success was largely due to the fact that it was a GREAT FUCKING APP which, in turn, caused people to talk about it. Tweetie had merits which warranted the praise, and that's why it was successful. If it were a mediocre app that gained fame because people did the dude a favor by hyping it…then maybe you'd deserve some kind of residual dues.

    But you don't deserve anything.

    Either way, comment #1 pretty much said all that needed to be said, so I'm pretty much wasting my time.

  • http://www.rolfje.com Rolf

    Tweetie was perfect, and I tweeted a lot with it. That's about $0.00001 per Tweet. If Tweetie 2 is anywhere near as good, and ads offline reading and Tweeting, I'd happily pay $5 (say), because the developer needs tp make a living too, you know.

    Idea for a free upgrade: For the complainers, add adds, and upgrade all the free Tweetie 1 owners with it. Tweetie for Mac does that, and I don't mind. As long as Loren can live from it and continue to create these cool apps, I'm happy.

    Rock on, Atebits!

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  • yet another steve

    You are a cheap bastard. If the software isn't worth $3, move along. APPLE DOESN'T ALLOW UPGRADE PRICING. Developers need to get paid.

    I once had a guy ask me "Do you know much about computers?" (I'm a developer so yes.) He wanted to know if I could circumvent a demo restriction for him. He had this software he used every day for hours a day and the demo was making him reinstall it once a day. "By now they should know I'm not going to pay and just give it to me for free." In a moment of anger that shocked all of my friends (cuz I'm not like that) I finally told him to SHUT THE FUCK UP AND PAY THE $20.

    Do you realize how hard and unusual it is to make a living as an indie developer????

    Anyway, you are a cheaper bastard than that guy that thought a software developer should help him circumvent a $20 purchase. You wasted—how long?–to rant that somebody wouldn't give you a dollar off as an upgrade price. And you didn't even take the time to get a clue that upgrade pricing IS NOT AVAILABLE because of how Apple runs the store.

    Principle? (which, proudly, I can spell.) Your principle is that you don't want to pay for an upgrade. Not. Even. $3. Epic fail on "''principle" dude. You think that because you bought a piece of software you are entitled to the rest of the developer's work for free? Epic fucking fail.

    Me, I think a developer shows love for users by upgrading products instead of moving on. I am HAPPY to be able to pay them because that way they can continue to give the product attention.

    But mostly, I am astounded by people arguing "principle" over Three Dollars. Because that's chump change for a great product, but a huge difference to the ability of the developer to work on it and maybe EAT. There are a lot of people here that really don't know how embarrassed they should be!

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      What level of fail is it to call me on the spelling of principle when, if you bother to read the post, I never used the word? Oh, and the bit about I bought an app and now feel entitled to the rest of the dev's work for free – again, you might try reading the post. Never said that, or anything close to it.

      Here's my favorite fail on your part though: "Me, I think a developer shows love for users by upgrading products instead of moving on."

      Let's see now – oh yeah, that would be exactly what is NOT happening in this case. The dev has chosen not to upgrade the app, but to call it by a new name and move on. Well supported argument there mate.

  • annoyed

    So don't buy it. Let your money speak. If you want the new features and think they are worth $3 you should be willing to pay that. The fact that you are bitching like a little kid who can't get their parents to buy you a toy shows exactly what you are a little kid who feels entitled. Grow up

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  • Dave

    Release of a paid update "will spit on" old app users who have the older versions of Tweetie that continues to work? What a drama queen.

    The developer worked for months on a top-down rewrite and all he's charging is 3 bucks? He never promised free updates. All that venom is over 3 whole dollars. Wow.

    You and your "horribly bad taste in" your mouth need to get a life. Posts like this will lose you both respect and readers. Grow up.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=589012029 Héctor Arturo Arciga

    Geez… what an asshole you are Patrick, you conveniently ignore other peoples responses, like the developer not even having the option to allow upgrades due to the App Store sales mechanics. Stubborn piece of shit, how about you go acquire the necessary skills to create iPhone apps and then you can go do whatever the fuck you want with them.

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  • john1027

    Like many in this thread, I find the argument that once you buy an app you should have perpetual upgrades ridiculous. Time is money and the developer should be reasonably compensated for their efforts. I am very happy with the current app and will gladly pay the price of a cup of coffee to help ensure the developer stays with his product and doesn't abandon their app. Otherwise I'd just be moving onto another app at perhaps another cost that might be higher for an inferior product.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Like many in this thread, you have not read the post that you're railing against. I have never made any argument for perpetual upgrades. Have not even said I believe this upgrade should be free.

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  • http://aaronwitherow.co.uk Aaron

    Yeah you cant really complain based on price because its so cheap, but take that out of the case and I still think that you are flawed, every software development company adds a slew of new features and calls it a new version, maybe you get an upgrade price, maybe you don't but people need to stop expecting something for nothing.

    If you don't like it don't buy it and if enough people don't then the software developer will decide how best to market or sell their products and in the process save you a dollar to buy a lollipop.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    I'm done with Tweetie. SimplyTweet has replaced EchoFon/Tweetie as my iPhone Twitter apps. It is the best one out there in my opinion.

    BTW, holy crap are people incensed about Tweetie! Take a chill pill everyone! :)

  • PatrickJ is an Idiot

    You sir are a total arse… It's $3 for a completely rewritten engine. Do you baulk at paying when OS X gets a rewrite from 10.5 to 10.6? Or Office? Or Photoshop?

    My god, go back to nursery school and play in the sandpit and let us grown-ups be.

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  • http://rondomingue.com Ron

    It is Tweetie 2.0 not Tweetie 1.5 pay for the new version or stay with 1.0 no one is making you buy 2.0 (1.0 works quite fine). If you are concerned with what kind of precedence this sets how about one that sets a precedence for making a profit for the designer and developer.

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  • http://intensedebate.com/people/dewjose dewjose

    Ugh…. Damn it Apple…

    This has nothing to do with Pricing or "PRINCIPAL".

    This is all about the monster that Apple has created with their broken pricing model/facility has generated over 100 million overly "entitled" users.

    As the developer of a "Free" application I can assure you that this same sense of entitlement exists in that arena as well.

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  • Douglas

    I buy Football Manager every year. The game is basically an upgrade from the previous years. I do the same for other games on the PS3 like Fight Night. Complaining about this would be like me complaining about these annual updates despite the effort others have put into them. I really dont feel spat upon. Grow up. If you dont want it dont buy it.

  • http://www.owenhodda.com Owen

    You are SO RIGHT!! I bought a Radiohead's "Kid A" CD on the day it came out, and that money kept them in crack and hookers for years. But when I went to pick up my copy of "Rainbows", I had to pay for it!! How outrageous. I had contributed to their success by buying their albums, and all they do is spit in my face by making me pay for the next one. I mean, It is still a mucis CD for **** sake.
    It's not the price, I can easily afford CDs, it's the principle. They wouldn't be so popular except for the people who bought their CDs, so why should we have to pay for their next CD? It's crazy.

    Dude. Really. Get over it. The guy is trying to make a living, this is how it's done. Don't want the new version? Don't buy it.

  • Jeremy B

    What a tragic loser.

  • Chris

    OK, maybe I'm getting confused by the "it's only £3 – get a life"ers, but since its all about the principle, here's where I'm struggling:

    1. you want an upgrade to be offered at a discount price, even though the App Store can't do this.
    2. because you cant get the pricing model YOU want for this App (because of Apple, not Tweetie btw) you want Tweetie 2 for free.
    3. You believe that when you purchased Tweetie 1, there was some commitment made to provide any new features at a later date either for free (since the App Store can't do discounts)
    4. You challenge that Tweetie 2 is a new app, even though it is completely new code.

    I think I must've misunderstood the principle at some point because all the above looks pretty weak, as a principle.

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  • Sal

    I can't agree with this but can appreciate the ideology behind 'upgrades' and 'full versions'. Personally, in this case, it doesn't apply to the structure of iPhone apps. Some might say it's not right to be charged, even if they are fairly affluent enough to have an iPhone, etc.

    I think it's perfectly acceptable t charge for Tweetie 2 and I don't mind one bit doing so and I will be. For me, it's not principles or loyalty to the Mac/iPhone platform or the small developer but because it's a very good app and worth it.

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  • http://intensedebate.com/people/joshgard Josh Gard

    Dude, have you even read the follow up posts and comments that Patrick has written after this post?!? Obviously not, it's been mentioned MANY times that it's NOT about the price, but the lack of an upgrade model with the App Store. Not a stab at Atebits, but more highlighting the lack of an upgrade purchase for apps. No where has Patrick EVER said he expects Twitter 2 to be given to him for free.

  • RESASON

    THREE DOLLARS

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/russdogg russdogg

    All i can say is, I bought both versions and haven't regretted it for a second. Now if I could only get my money back for the T-pain app…

  • Generous B*****d

    I don't normally form such a strong opinion of people based on a mere ten paragraphs but you, sir, are tight.
    I don't mean that in a, "damn, that's tight" slang sense of the word, either. I mean that in a, "you never buy your friends drinks, you tight b******d?" sense of the word.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/patrickj patrickj

      Oh gosh. You sir nailed it, bang to rights. That must be it – I am a tight barsteward. That'd be why, as I explained in the comments, in other posts on this very subject, and in many posts here generally, I have happily paid $15 for the desktop version of Tweetie, $9.99 for the Things iPhone app and several others in that price bracket, $49 for the Things Mac version, and have happily paid $3 and upwards for countless iPhone apps, including jailbreak apps as well. Oh yeah, and lived a dozen years in the UK in the heart of a major pub society – never bought anyone a drink there – real popular guy me.

      Yes sir, you truly sussed out the real reason behind my posting.

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  • Densey

    Think of it this way. If he can't charge for upgrades and he's not going to brand it a new app and charge for this massive upgrade, then guess what: this upgrade wouldn't exist. He would just keep fixing the small bugs and doing as little FREE work on the app as possible. Get it?