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FCPX + Apple App Store 2.0 - New App Subscription Model

Just a few days before WWDC 2016, Apple has revealed that there are some major changes coming to the various App Stores. (iOS, tvOS, watchOS, OS X)

Namely, app SUBSCRIPTIONS.

One could argue that this has been a long time coming, especially with many software creators (e.g. Adobe) turning to subscription based models to keep their cash flows steady.

What this change ultimately means for general purpose "consumer" apps is unknown, although it does appear to give developers more options for how they would like to monetize their apps, which couldn't be a bad thing from their perspective. The better profit share splits being offered from Apple should appeal to developers as well. (From 70/30 to 85/15 split after 1 year of a customer's subscription)

The more interesting (worrisome?) question is what will happen with Apple's own Pro Apps like Final Cut Pro X, Compressor, Motion 5, Logic Pro X? On one hand, its kind of mind blowing that with all the updates and improvements to Final Cut Pro X since it's 2011 debut, that Apple hasn't charged for a single update.

Could this change bring a new monthly charge to get the next version of Final Cut Pro X? Or perhaps not a full blown subscription, but will this simply put in place a method for Apple to charge an upgrade fee when there is a significant update to FCPX? Both are somewhat plausible, although the latter seems to be more so, in my opinion.

 
 

With a new update of Final Cut Pro X rumored to be coming some time next week during WWDC 2016, it would stand to reason that any changes to the way it's being priced and sold will be revealed at that point as well. I personally doubt that Apple will start charging a subscription price for any of the Pro App's, simply because they have no track record of doing that in the past, and its relatively "small potatoes" in the grand scheme of their vast business.

I've always thought of Apple's hardware as being "the cars" that they sell and their software as being "the road" on which you can "drive" the car on. Basically, they stand to make more money, more often if they have a good ecosystem (highway system?) of software on which to run their very profitable hardware on.

Also, while the Final Cut Pro X user base continues to grow as more people come to understand its power, it's still hasn't completely shaken the stigma it unfairly earned when it debuted back in 2011. It seems that it would be in the best interest of Apple to continue to make it readily accessible to the masses at its incredible one time price, and it will continue to permeate slowly outwards to the Youtubers, students, bitter FCP7 die hards, old-timer AVID fogey's, anti-subscription Premiere users, and to the masses of other post production professionals who may now be willing to give it another chance.

Who knows, maybe you'll even be able to get an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription through the Apple App store before you know it? Stranger things have happened...