RIM just rolled out in-app payments today along with App World 2.1. I have yet to see exactly how the process works though RIM has provided a few screenshots. Hopefully they will get a video up of the process in action soon! I think these in app transactions for “Digital Goods” or “Virtual Goods” offers a whole new opportunity for developers. This billing method has been a huge hit for Apple iOS developers allowing them to monetize in different ways. The last report I read had almost 50% of iTunes transactions happening using in-app payments which is impressive.
Think of it this way. In-app payments will allow scenarios like these:
- You are listening to a song in Slacker or Pandora and want to buy it. Just click the buy through App World button, log in, and its paid for.
- You download BerryReader’s trial and after the trial expires the app can now offer you the option to upgrade to the full version just by logging in.
- Developers like FixmoTools can offer incremental features in their apps that instead of paying $10 for the app you can pay $0.99 per module/utility you want to use.
The possibilities are endless. I am really interested in games since I think it will finally offer developers incentives to create more levels for games that you can unlock. Say you are playing Addictive Tower Defense and blow through the available levels the developer can offer up more levels at a cost.
I have been trying to confirm with developers and RIM if the in app purchases will allow the developers to deliver more content to your device. For example, in the game scenario I mentioned before I am curious if developers could automatically deliver content to the app somehow like a new level without the user having to download an upgrade.
What do you think? Will in app purchases make you willing to spend more on apps? If anything I am hoping that in app purchases will replace these dead end trial versions of apps replacing them with a simple in-app unlock purchase.