How much was the last app you bought on your smartphone? It’s very likely that the answer to that question is less than a pound, no matter how complex or detailed that app was. When Apple launched the App Store in 2008, the average price of apps was significantly higher, with games such as Super Monkey Ball selling for £5.99 and Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart at $12.99. Over time, the huge competition has led to games dropping prices to 69p, or even free, with new revenue streams being established through advertising or additional purchases. Along with this fall in pricing, many firms have found that it’s not profitable to spend time developing complex games and applications, leading to a proliferation of match-three and simple physics puzzlers. Continue reading “Racing to the bottom”
Prior to yesterday’s announcement of the iPad Mini, there was a great deal of speculation as to its form, its capabilities, its existence and its price. Commentators saw the rumoured tablet to be a direct competitor to the Kindle Fire and the Nexus 7, indicating that they believed Apple was concerned about losing market share in that market. The price was rumoured to be around the same level as those competitors, so that the differences which would make people want to buy an iPad over an Android tablet would be the quality of the hardware and the app marketplace. Continue reading “Sheltering under an umbrella”
At the beginning of February, Google lost a court case in France where a competitor – Bottin Cartographies – has accused them of anti-competitive pricing. The story has been reported by Forbes and CNET with some confusion over what exactly has been discussed.
The basis of the case appears to be that Bottin Cartographies has alleged that Google is giving away its maps service for free, which is a move designed to ensure that nobody else can compete and are driven out of the market. Once Google has no competition, it will be able to raise its price and abuse its market power. Continue reading “Is free too cheap?”