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A Very Mild Defense of In-App Purchases

In this part of his post on In-App Purchases, John Moltz sums up my feelings quite well:

What we should be asking is simply whether or not we’re spending what the app is worth. We’ve spent a lot of time decrying the race to the bottom in app pricing. Now we’re complaining because app developers have found a way to make more money.

Not surprisingly, the study cited above says the freemium model works out well for developers. Almost exclusively, of course, it’s all the wrong developers. Because the good ones, the ones we like and go drinking with at WWDC, would rather drag a nail across a Retina MacBook Pro than go freemium.

Exactly. I am complaining because the wrong developers are leveraging In-App Purchases to create "games" that nickel and dime players and keep asking for more money. Funnily, just as we thought the arcade was dead, it's back and it's more expensive than ever with mobile games.

My problem is with games designed not for fun, but for profit. Games that are optimized for shady IAP tactics, rather than great gameplay. But I don't want to repeat myself -- here's what I've written about my bias for quality games, Apple and its culture for gaming, and the value of In-App Purchases.