[Gta04-owner] [SPAM] Re: GTA04A4 Group Tour - next steps

Xavi Drudis Ferran xdrudis at tinet.cat
Wed Apr 4 14:22:31 CEST 2012


On Wed 04/04/12 12:31 , "Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller" <hns at goldelico.com> wrote:
> But I have analysed the whole situation and now think the key issue
> for finding more potential buyers within the linux and open source
> community is the lack of a really complete device.
>

I strongly agree.
 
> Regarding an application shop: would it be interesting to software
> developers
> to earn some money through a central shop (with portal, search facility,
> payment management) and for users to get higher quality applications by
> paying some cents? Some percentage could be used to support future
> hardware
> development. I.e. similar to the revenue sharing model of Apple?
> 

I disagree. 

Application shops are just prostituted distribution repositories. 
The concept of distribution is only really possible with free software
(the concept is some developers develop software and some [others?]
integrate it and package it, the integration needs the 4 freedooms to 
really work). Application stores are successful with nonfree software
users because they give a central point of access to what they have been
used to experience as a disgregation of software sources. Sometimes they 
_force_ a central point. But free software
users are used to distribution repositories which give both central point of access,
easiness of installation and removal, integration and choice (different distributions
solve problemes in different ways even sometimes with the same software). 
Application stores can't be attractive to a free software audience. 

What would be very attractive would be the phone software to be integrated
in general purpose distribution. I'd love to be able to run debian squeeze 
(or wheezy) and have the QtMoko applications (or equally useful alternatives) 
in debian main. This isn't  as easy said as done, I suspect, and it does 
not help any financial model. 
But I think if possible it would bring more users to buy the hardware, because
these distributions already have a user base. Just install your distro in this phone
and add this phone metapackage, or whatever.

But I think that if you come from a financial model selling hardware that 
hasn't been as successful as it should and try to improve it by selling 
software, you won't be lucky. Selling more hardware may do it (complete phone), or selling
hardware with better software, but application stores would be a nightmare.
If the hardware vendor profits from it then the software developer may want 
some profit too, then either it is propietary software (missing the point and 
the integration potential) or other intermediaries may get in and dissolve 
the capital... 

I'm ok with paying for free software, but I don't think this can be done per copy.
The profit model and the cost model are too dislocated. It can be done 
with crowdfunding, custom development, public grant, or even contract support service, 
but paying by copy of some app downloaded just doesn't work. The very 
problem is people isn't paying (enough) for the hardware (which can't be
reproduced at 0 cost), I don't see why will they pay for the software (which can). 

You kind of suggest to have both free and nonfree software in the application shop.
But the people interested in free software will get it elsewhere and the 
developers interested in selling propietary software will develop for bigger
markets. I don't see it. 

But I'm no business expert, by any means.

Now, of I just had some time to install the latest releases and play a little (not even dreaming
of contributing :( )



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