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Corona Starter And Changes To Pro - Discuss!
Started by DavidRangel Apr 05 2013 08:08 AM

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#26

DavidRangel

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Mauricio - no one is asking you to throw more money in right now. The price is $349 for 3.5 more weeks. Furthermore, as a subscriber, you have *2 more years* where you will be able to renew at $349. So we are not asking you, at all, to throw more cash at us. Let me make that very clear. Your price is not changing until some time in 2015! :)

 

Yes, we did announce that the price will go up in May. This is for 2 reasons:

- We think Pro is worth it

- Over the next month+ we are adding more functionality to Corona that will make it even more worth it

 

People often are asking us to give warning ahead of time - and they have done so within this same discussion. Well, that is what we did with the price change AND the coming features :)

AND, you won't be affected by it as an existing subscriber. I can't think of a more favorable situation than that.

 

As we add many of the new features, they will be made available to Pro subscribers. And they will come in the next month and beyond. That's a fact.



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#27

LairdGames

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1- I am pretty sure it is too late now (and maybe not even feasible technically/business wise) BUT why not just add a "Pro Plus" or "Expert" level where people can get the new goodies (graphics, Gluon...) The current Pro could then upgrade to it if they want to for say $200? Again, just rambling here, since I am 110% sure you thought of that during your business decisions making process!

 

 

2- I am not sure about the reasoning behind "if people get "successful" with the "starter" then they would automatically switch to Pro.

 

a- I think it will a very very small % of the total users of "starters" who would call them "successful"

b- Not sure what the Pro version would bring them more (if they already successful) with the "starter". Of course maybe analytics...

 

 

My 99 cents!

 

Mo



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#28

DavidRangel

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Mo - yes, in theory we could add even more product versions. But that is a tough road - complexity is usually not good. If we end up with many products, with add-ons (as has also been suggested), eventually things get very confusing :)

 

As for your second point. If an indie is successful and can stay with Starter, then that's great. But as already discussed, we will add more features to Pro (e.g., OpenGL 2.0). So if you are successful and want to do more things with graphics, plugins or whatever else, then you might consider the upgrade to Pro. But even if you don't - we will be happy with many successful indies using Starter - that only helps the community.



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#29

ubj3d.android

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If you guys made it so enterprise users can make plugins in java/objective-c, why we can't use such wonderful feature? That's what i don't get. I'd be more than happy paying $600 (expensive but still) with that.

Agree 100%. For $600 we should be able to make plugins.

 

You (Corona Labs) should add that feature to Pro version.

There are so many monetization options out there which would make the developers living easier.

I know they work cause I use them in my native written game but can't use them in Corona (e.g. Kiip is a great additional revenue stream).

 

Why don't you wanna help us make some money ? :blink:



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#30

LairdGames

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@David, good points! Can't wait to see what you guys are cooking. Especially in term of graphics!

 

 

Mo



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#31

Rob Miracle

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Maurício Gomes, if it were a cash grab, we would not have given away what we did for free, nor would we be grandfathering everyone for two years or giving free upgrade's to the Indie license holders.



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#32

wpetzler

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2 years I started development on a game and settled on Corona SDK as a simple and fairly cheap option for development.

Now older and a little wiser I can see my time and money would have been better invested in other avenues, alas no point dwelling.

 

What I find interesting is that as more and more (better and cheaper) options have become available your price continues to rise. $600 for a YEARLY licence is really expensive compared to your competition. The only thing that has kept me here is the fact that I have sunk so much time into this I feel I need to finish it (sunk cost fallacy?).

 

To me, Corona is positioned as a product for people who want to enter the market and make a quick buck without having to spend much time learning tools and languages. 

Corona is a product with an impressive feature set, but when you start to scratch the surface you begin to realize the features are poorly documented and rarely work as advertised. I see a funny little parallel between Corona and the customer that they try to attract in that they are both producing a flashy, yet shallow product with the intention of making some quick money in a volatile marketplace.

 

This is stark contrast to something like Unity which seems to me to be aiming for a more longer term approach. They are comfortable selling Unity for a one time fee, because they have faith in their product and know that it will continue to sell. They are playing the long game.

 

Some will argue that the new 'free' version of Corona SDK is the perfect option for someone like me. You're only missing out on IAP right? For now, it looks very attractive (Ignoring the fact that IAP is a deal-breaker for me). But I promise you, they will strip that free version down until you have no alternative but to rent the Pro version. That's the nature of yearly licencing I suppose, you're completely at their mercy.



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#33

DavidRangel

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wpetzler - thanks for the thoughts. Let me ask you a couple of questions:

 

And let me preface this by saying that I think Unity is a fantastic tool.

 

1) Say you buy Unity today for a "one time fee". What will you do in 18-24 months when they come out with a brand new version (e.g., 5.0)?

 

2) When you say that there are "cheaper" options out there, who are you referring to? Unity is not cheaper by any means.

 

3) I think saying that "features rarely work as advertised" is unfair. Can you be more specific?

 

Things are changing so quickly in mobile that there are bound to be some things that don't always exactly work as you would like, are evolving, etc. That by the way is the case with any platform. I challenge you to show me "the perfect platform" - I'll quickly go into their forum and find threads of people complaining :)

But I think 27k live apps in all the different app stores are a decent indication that the product works. Many of those apps by the way are very solid apps and I think they are in it for the long haul too.

 

I won't argue about "better" because clearly there are different opinions there. If Corona didn't work for you, then I'm sorry about that. It is working for many thousands of developers.  

 

Finally, I guarantee we will not take away features from Starter. If anything we will may move things from Pro to Starter as things evolve. 



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#34

PXL artificer

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Agree 100%. For $600 we should be able to make plugins.

 

You (Corona Labs) should add that feature to Pro version.

There are so many monetization options out there which would make the developers living easier.

I know they work cause I use them in my native written game but can't use them in Corona (e.g. Kiip is a great additional revenue stream).

 

Why don't you wanna help us make some money ? :blink:


That's exactly what I wrote somewhere a few weeks ago. I tried Corona Enterprise, is nice and everything, but for me - indie, sole developer - it's overkill.
I don't need to have access to ObjC every time I'm working on a app. I just need to be able  - from time to time - to build simple plugins to

extend Corona. That's all. 999 is too much for that.

In my opinion, the perfect solution would be:

1. a Pro+ license, same price of the current pro, that allows you to create plugins.

2. a basic pro, same thing as now but 349$

And actually, since I guess there are more Pro license than Enterprise, allowing Pro to make and distribute plugins on your Gluon marketshare would probably increase the number of plugins available for your users and what Corona can do... a win-win situation.



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#35

undecode

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That's exactly what i think... limiting plug-ins to enterprise users is not a good idea, and im pretty sure its way easier to find 5 pro users than 1 enterprise.

Since i'm sure that some enterprise subscriptions were sold already and you can't change it right now, what about make it so enterprise people can actually sell their plug-in oficially and Pro users can't? But both of them can make them. Think about it... Lua-based multi-platform engine for mobile with java/objC support, don't you think that would get enough people (both pro and enterprise) to make you guys earn a lot of money?



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#36

PXL artificer

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That's exactly what i think... limiting plug-ins to enterprise users is not a good idea, and im pretty sure its way easier to find 5 pro users than 1 enterprise.

Since i'm sure that some enterprise subscriptions were sold already and you can't change it right now, what about make it so enterprise people can actually sell their plug-in oficially and Pro users can't? But both of them can make them. Think about it... Lua-based multi-platform engine for mobile with java/objC support, don't you think that would get enough people (both pro and enterprise) to make you guys earn a lot of money?


Yeah, it could be that enterprise users can sell their plug-ins in Gluon marketplace while Pro users can only release them for free.
More plugins available means more features for Corona and at the same time less work for Coronalabs...



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#37

Nob Studio

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Hi, I like to share my thoughts on corona sdk

 

1. Comparing with Unity

I think we shouldn't compare corona sdk with unity at all, we should compare with Marmalade, game salad and other 2D engines.
  • Unity is 3D engine,  If you want to make 3D game, go for Unity. Its is powerful, but very difficult to use, You'll waste a lot of time developing 2D games with Unity.
  • Corona is 2D engine, fast&rapid development, and runs smoothly with no loading time on most phones. But it support less platforms. If you want to make 2D game or simple apps, go for Corona or other 2D engines. 
 
2.Starter vs Pro
  • Analytics
Its good to have, but not something you cant live without. Personally, I seldom use it.
  • Daily Builds and Pre-releases
Good to have. Public release is updated only every 3~ 6 months? 
  • Plugin
You'll have to pay for most of the plugins. Does Pro user get some free plugins in future?
  • In-App Purchase

Probably the main reason to update to Pro. 

 

For now, all you need to decide is whether IAP worth the $600 per year? 

From my experience, 500 daily download for a iOS free game earns about 10~40 usd, 200 download earns 3~15 usd, 300 daily download with revmob earns 0~12 usd.
(android market is about 1/3 of iOS earning for the same amount of downloads)
If you are wondering whether IAP can cover the cost, just switch it from paid to free and see how much downloads you are getting after two weeks. 5~50 downloads per day probably earns nothing. 
 
Conclusion:
New users: upgrade Pro only if you get more than 1000 downloads per day

I think Starter is great deal. If you have one or two free app/game that each generates more than 500 daily downloads then go ahead and get Pro and try out IAP. If not, stick with Starter and use revmob ads for free game/app.

Current Indie/pro: continue subscription before expires if you make more than 350 usd a year

For indie, don't put too much hope in android market. But if you earn more than 350 usd last year then I think you should continue the pro subscription, because we'll be paying $350 per year instead of $600 usd!

 

3. Suggestion

Include Offline Build & some free plugins for Pro users to make the deal more attractive.



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#38

CineTek

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I guess we have to wait for project Gluon and the new graphics improvements in order to evaluate the new prices better. It would be nice to get a few more information about it though ;)



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#39

Nate31

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A couple of thoughts:

 

1) David - thanks for your responses here and elsewhere over the past several months.  You are the voice that Corona has needed for awhile and the time you take is building trust with developers like me.  Thank you.

 

2) I think you guys took a smart approach with the new price structure.  I like the product and I'm happy to pay more down the line to support a more robust version of it.  I want Corona to prosper so the tool stays around.  Those of us that do should give you some latitude to make pricing changes that guarantee growth and profitability for Corona Labs.  

 

I think a lot of the negative feedback stems from folks not understanding that the prices for current subscribers aren't going to rise for two more years.  That wasn't completely clear from the original post.  Delaying the increase for subscribers was a generous, customer-focused decision and I applaud that.  Thank you.

 

3) From a macro standpoint, I like the new voice and direction around here.  I'm pleased that a new public build has arrived.  I think the Gluon/plugin framework has the potential to dramatically improve the Corona ecosystem.  

 

More communication would be great, though.  When core features like analytics suddenly (1) stop working (2) with very little explanation why and (3) no timetable for when they will return, that is really pretty shoddy customer service for a paid product.  It has been about a month and I still don't understand why analytics aren't working (other than it is some sort of "server issue") or when they are going to return.  That does not build trust.

 

And, like many around here, I am hoping that the new-and-improved Corona team starts shipping features much more rapidly.  I'm happy to pay more and get more.  Lots of the things in the pipeline (Gluon/plugins, in particular) should really be great.  But, from a subscriber perspective, Corona builds and ships very slowly relative to others.  Despite promising a more agile development cycle last year, 5+ months elapsed between last week's public build and the previous one in November.  Looking at the release notes, there is nothing that big in there, especially for your core iOS developers.  

 

Five months is an eternity these days in software development.  I'm not sure what needs to change on Corona's product development side (maybe focusing on one big new feature at a time, like not re-vamping the graphics while trying to ship Gluon/plugins?), but subscribers no longer trust the Corona team to ship what they say they will in any reasonable time.  I know Corona Cloud and enterprise have been a focus for the team.  But plugins/Gluon has been discussed for a long time (a year or more?) and it still isn't here.  Will it be launched within three months from now?  I don't know how any subscriber could confidently say it will be (nor has Corona even committed to that timeframe).  I'm sure you're aware of it, but higher prices are going to command a better ability to communicate and ship.

 

Thanks for all of your work!



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#40

codingcake

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I am a  pro user, regarding new price plan , I do not have any comment. 

But I would like to know when the plug-in function and new graphic engine  would be ready?

Because right now the subscription user and free user all using 2013.1076 build , I just hope the plug in function ready ASAP !!



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#41

Minion Multimiedia

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Device Access

Lastly (for now), we have found a way for you to access certain Java
and Objective-C APIs from Lua! On the Android side, we already have the
foundation there thanks to Enterprise, and we’re looking at how we can
accelerate bringing those Enterprise innovations down to Pro developers.
In parallel, we also have a proof-of-concept on the iOS side, so I’ll
have more news once we’re past the research phase.

 

I am mostly interested in this... Hopefully this will be soon...



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#42

thomas6

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Just wanted to chip in, in agreement with natelipscomb:

 

Thanks David for being so accessible. I was afraid of a void after Carlos left, but you and Brent and Rob are very present on the forum - which to me is worth "a couple of dollars" a year in itself.

 

Besides that, my very personal opinion is that your new pricing is ridiculously good news for a lot of indie developers - it's basically insane that your starter version is free but still a tool that can potentially earn someone a living. Unfortunately the pro version at 600 dollars is too much in my opinion, if I compare it to the other software packages I buy and update for our 20-strong design studio, and especially since for a lot of us it seems that only IAP is the big lacking feature in starter. Then again, you're not forcing anyone to buy something they don't want, so it's very much a first world problem. Keep it up!

 

p.s. Do bear in mind that your pro price is practically the same as the price for the whole Adobe Creative Suite subscription, so for the same price as "pro", meaning not even the Enterprise version Adobe gives you:

- Photoshop

- Illustrator

- Indesign

- Dreamweaver

- Flash

- Flex

- After Effects

- Premiere

- Edge

- and lots more ...

 

Something to ponder...



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#43

PXL artificer

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I'd also like to know more about that Device Access point.

If that's going to give pro devs the ability to extend corona with some obj c native code, well at least it could be a partial solution to all of us asking to be able to make native plugins with a Pro license.


Any insight on how it will work?



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#44

c0ppo

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Well, I'm rather new subscriber. Bought iOS version, and currently have been promoted to Pro version wich is nice.

But I do agree that the price is rather too expensive. As thomas6 pointed out, check out just what you can get from adobe at that price.

 

I plan on releasing my first game written in Corona by the end of the year. After that I really can't promise I'm gonna contiune using Corona and buying a new licence. For 600$ I would expect to get plugins and especially offline builds. 1000$ for that is simply too much for Indie developer.

 

And yes I do know I won't have to pay 600$ in the next 2 years. But still, I have to consider what will happend after those two years pass by. Then I will have to pay 600$ and still I will not have offline builds, and probably won't be able to write plugins. There is a huge gap between Pro and Starter licences. Too huge if u ask me.

 

Just my 2 cents :)



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#45

funkyvisions

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I literally upgraded to Pro the day before this announcement. Doh! Oh well… I get 2 extra months and 2 years of renewal at $350, but still… I’m barely selling enough a month to cover this and my iOS developer fee. Still think Corona SDK is a great deal. In fact, giving a presentation on it this month in my local iOS users group.

So if all you want is in-app do you have to upgrade from starter to Pro or will there be ala carte pricing? Just curious. Too late for me. But that would have been the route I went if I hadn’t already upgraded. My timing is impeccable.

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#46

sunmils

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I don't really understand the continuing comparison to Unity. I think both have their right to exist, since they don't really focus the same target group, but of cause there is a intersection. And for me, the free option sounds great, as long you are a small company or in the beginnings. As far as I can see the benefits from the pro version are only indispensable if you go serious. 

 

But as usually, the devil is in the details. If you have a major bug in the public release, it can be a pain in the ass to wait up to two months. So its up to corona, to take also care on the free customers. But I think they will.

 

On the other hand, I hope bugs reported by pro users will be adressed faster in the future, cause the long duration were really annoying in part.

 

So IMO the changes are a step in the right direction if good transacted. 



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#47

sean84

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I for one was very disappointed that not 5 days ago I spent $199 for a product which is now free...sure they upgraded me to 'pro', but I don't need any of that...This reminds me of when I stood in line to buy the original iPhone for $600 and not 2 weeks later they dropped the price $200. Way to annoy folks..



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#48

mikerr

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The free starter deal is amazing, maybe giving too much away - why go pro? Especially as  free doesn't even have branding (spash screen)

 

Many existing apps could have been done with starter (its only really missiing IAP),

and having just paid for Indie (now Pro) last week I'm left a little peeved that I'd be just as well off not paying...

 

One good thing is the merging of platforms, so everybody can target all iOs/android by default.

 

I see many people dropping down to free unless pro gets more features added.



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#49

CraftyDeano

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With IAP, Gluon Plugins (so much cool stuff coming with that!), Graphics 2.0 (5k onscreen objects at 60fps, 2.5d image manipulation), Daily Builds (new/latest features/newest devices/OS support) and a price lock for 2 years, old indie/pro users haven't got it too bad. 

 

Although these features are not for everyone of course, many will be happy with the pro plan, many will be satisfied with the free plan. Near impossible to make everyone happy :)



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#50

codingcake

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hi @DavidRangel :

 I have a question regarding plugin support for pro user. 

It seems the plugin created by 3 party  but not pro user, right now, I do not see any detail info of plug in.

When could we got it ?  and how many 3 party will provide plugin for us .

 Because the different between  free version and pro version  only IAP function
(this only support google play and iOS , no Amazon and nook)

If only these different and without detail of plugins, I think this will not make old pro user happy   :huh: 




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