Bug Trackr 2.1 shipped recently and with it comes a very different revenue model.
Previous to this version, Bug Trackr was free with an in-app purchase to unlock premium content known as the "Pro Upgrade". The reason for this was to let customers download and try the app before purchasing it. Sales were higher than if I charged the same amount upfront for the app but I felt I could do better.
This version does away with the Pro Upgrade. After installing version 2.1, all current and new users will be able to add an unlimited number of apps and bugs. I've also removed the bottom app banner.
But I can't afford to run Bug Trackr at a loss so version 2.1 includes a new Tip Jar. The premise is simple, pay what you feel the app is worth. Some users will never use the Tip Jar and that's perfectly ok. Some users will frequently tip and I'm very thankful for that.
As the App Store matures and customers reject paid-upfront apps, developers like myself need to come up with new ways of generating revenue (we have to eat, too).
The tip jar solves multiple problems. First, it reduces the barrier to entry to zero. Now, anyone can use the app and without paying anything, they have access to every feature and a complete experience. It also generates good-will from customers which in turn organically creates new customers. Lastly, it solves the problem of users who want to pay more for the app and now can.
Leap of Faith
This is all assuming people are essentially good-natured human beings who see the value in the products I create. I believe they are.
Tip Jars have been used in other apps and it's an intriguing premise. I can't say Bug Trackr will always support this model but we'll see where it goes from here.