Friday, January 29, 2016

The 2015 Panic Report

Cabel Sasser:

iOS Revenue. I brought this up last year and we still haven’t licked it. We had a change of heart — well, an experimental change of heart — and reduced the price of our iOS apps in 2015 to normalize them at $9.99 or less, thinking that was the upper limit and/or sweet spot for iOS app pricing. But it didn’t have a meaningful impact on sales.

More and more I’m beginning to think we simply made the wrong type of apps for iOS — we made professional tools that aren’t really “in demand” on that platform — and that price isn’t our problem, but interest is.


One of our interesting app experiments — an app to share and discover music — was 95% done, had a beautiful interface and some interesting ideas, plus a complete server-side component… then got shelved. It wasn’t an easy decision. It was mostly worries about revenue — it doesn’t seem possible that you can charge money for a social app in 2016, since mass adoption is critical. And is advertising really a thing we want to do? This is maybe one of the only times I wished we were a startup — with a “release now, figure out how to make money later” culture — but we’re not.


Later in the year should see a brand-new, major update to Transmit, that will increase speed, add Panic Sync, seriously expand protocol support, and more. A Transmit overhaul is long overdue and we are extremely excited to get this out to the world in 2016. (One open question: will we distribute it in the Mac App Store? Hmm…)

1 Comment RSS · Twitter

I believe it's tough to market something "serious" on iOS for a lot of reasons and that would be much too long-winded. But one reason I believe is psychology. My impression is, that for most people their phones or pads are something like a "fun" platform (and for some it's even like a magic wand, that protects you in the dark). So when you turn to that device, it's mostly private communication and fun stuff. It's not easy to associate the dispensers of happiness and bliss, with work or serious stuff (which in the average case, more often than not are disliked). For example, it would rarely cross ones mind to even look for a productivity app on your PS-3.

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