Let me start by saying that between training costs, meals, transportation and fees I paid over 2500.00 for Appcelerator Training in NYC. Yes I thought it was a lot of money, but I made a commitment to the platform, it is what I do so to me it was an investment.
I don’t know if Appcelerator completely understood the consequences of the pricing model they chose, but I am certain it was not done without some serious thought. Maybe they were just floating a trial ballon and will give in because of the response form the community? Maybe all the noise we hear is only a small percentage of the Appcelerator Community?
The question I ask myself is what should be free and why should it be free?
- Should it be free because it is based on eclipse?
- Should it be free because PhoneGap is working on a free debugger?
- Should it be free because I think it should be free?
- Should it be free because people are complaining about it?
At the end of the day, developers and organizations need to choose a platform for developing mobile applications. If this is your business, your way of life, your way to feed your family then you will do what is right for you and your business. If you believe that paying for a debugger to help you write the best software you can is crazy and absurd request, then yes you should stick with your beliefs and find a platform that gives you what you want at a price that you are comfortable with.
However if you are a business enterprise, you are not going to be concerned about what is free and what is not free, you are going to be more focused on the total cost of doing business… It is not how much money am I spending, it is how much money am I making because of this tool…
How much more effective and efficient is my development organization now that I have access to these tools? Will the cost of the tool be offset by the benefit and the value it helps me bring to my clients and my business?
I honestly believe the issue is not so much the cost, the issue is the expectation that it should be free. The issue is that you need to write multiple mobile applications in a year to actually make money in this space unless you are a large organization. The issue is that most Android owners EXPECT there apps to be free so we cannot really make money selling apps on Android. Most iPhone apps are 99 cents or free so it is difficult to make money selling in the app store.
I guess I am saying all of this… if you are still reading… that the game has changed. I have been writing software for a while now; you used to have to pay for ALL IDE’s nothing was free.
We live in a time of 99 cent mobile apps… Open Source Software and BitTorrent we have become conditioned to believe that everything should be free or next to nothing…. Except the software that we write.