It is getting harder in recent times to be a mobile application developer. With 700,000+ applications on the App Store and Google Play, and 100,000+ on the Windows Phone Store, the risk of anonymity is a constant headache that plagues developers globally.
As competition increases, several crucial factors come into play which ultimately drives down gross margins, a bane for all developers.
Increasing Spend On Marketing
To cope with the increased competition, developers are now forced to spend more in marketing on various channels to make sure that their applications are given the light of day. And as more applications compete for lucrative advertising spaces, advertising rates get driven higher, causing a downward spiral which is a pain point especially for small-midsized developers with limited budgets.
Increasing Cost Of Human Capital
Everyone believes that mobile internet is the next “big” thing. And with that, mobile talents are hot in demand and constantly being poached by the top companies globally, hence getting increasingly difficult to find. Larger wages and benefits have to be offered to obtain the right talent to truly compete and build that “killer” application. This plays a part in reducing margins further.
Increasing Fragmentation Of The Mobile Ecosystem
In the PC world, the ecosystem was more straight-forward
- As a developer, you had to develop for either the Mac or the Microsoft
- Distribution was via retail channels (in a box) or via download of the internet
- Revenue models used to be one time purchase or on a yearly subscription basis
The mobile world is way more complicated
- With different operating systems – iOS, Android, Windows 8, BB 10, Symbian, Tizen, Bada and it seems that the list will continue to increase
- Distribution channels have increased and distribution can now be done via application stores, OEMs, Mobile Operators, retail and via download of the internet
- Revenue models also include in-app purchases, subscriptions, advertising, offer-walls and many more
It is with this increasing fragmentation that mobile developers require to spend more resources on the backend and less on developing an excellent product with good content.
Little Known Fact About The Windows 8 Platform
In their bid to play a larger role in the mobile operating system world, and to encourage more developers to come aboard, Microsoft has come out to say that for “In-App Commerce, you may elect to support purchasing options from within your app. You are not required to use Microsoft’s commerce engine to support those purchase”
What this is means in essence is that if a developer chooses to develop their own or use a 3rd party commerce solution, they no longer have to pay the 20%-30% revenue share which is traditionally given to Microsoft (or 30% for Google and Apple).
This I believe will make a lot of difference with increasing competition and declining margins in the mobile application world.
As a result, I would like to take this chance to introduce Lotaris. In an extremely competitive mobile ecosystem, Lotaris believes that it makes more sense for mobile developers to focus on content development and marketing instead of developing their own commerce engine. And increase their margins as a result.
From that aspect, we have launched Lotaris in-appCommerce, which is designed to help Windows 8 developers make the most of the fact that Microsoft allows them to choose their own commerce solution (licensing and payment provider) to integrate with the Windows Store.
In comparison to the default Windows Store commerce platform, Lotaris in-appCommerce
1) Supports a full range of business models and app licenses including one-time paid downloads, subscriptions and other in-app billing options
2) Provides developers direct access to users that have downloaded the apps instead of going through Microsoft
3) Provides developers with more detailed analytics and customer intelligence
4) Provides a straight forward setup and migration process from to the Windows Store API to the Lotaris API
All these at a significantly lower revenue share as compared to the Windows solution.
To make the decision to use Lotaris in-appCommerce easier, Lotaris will be to waiving our commission rate for the next 90 days during our early release program, allowing developers to keep all 100% of revenue earned from their applications.
Please click here for more information about Lotaris.