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How to Choose the App Model that Works for You

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5039 Views | 4 min | Published On: February 7, 2017 Last Updated: November 15, 2019
best app model

In the modern era, the mobile apps are being rolled out in their hundreds and thousands. To say that the competition in the app market in quite competitive would be an understatement. As a mobile app developer, there’s no other alternative to making a name for yourself than offering the best in terms of convenience and value to the end user.


The recent developments in the mobile industry have at least made one thing certain, that it’s a “buyer’s market” The mobile users can place their demands and the developers are expected to get the work done. However, at the other end of the spectrum, the developers have some sway over how they wish to offer their services. That’s where the question of free vs paid app models arises.

What are the different models out there?


Before a mobile app developer can think about adopting a certain model, a complete understanding of all models is indispensable. Before briefing on the merits and demerits of each model, it would be fair to surmise that each model brings something to offer and the decision about which one you choose is totally dependent upon the type of your app.

Paid apps


Paid app model is quite a popular app model. It’s quite straightforward.The developers build an app to sell it. The user has to pay a one-time fee to purchase the app. All the future patches and latest updates cost are included in the same fee. Often the app offers trial versions initially for a limited period of time to attract more people.


Everything seems to revolve around the cost. Goes without saying it has to be a reasonable one. You don’t want to shoo away the users by scaring them with your prices. The ios app development company has more to gain from the paid model.

The free model is just what it sounds like. It’s there to be tried for free.The app developers in this model aren’t overly concerned about the money. They just want the people to be using their apps, thereby increasing its popularity. This model can also be used to gauge the user interest levels before opting for the other popular monetizing models. A large number of Social networking apps seem to follow this model. An Android app development company is more likely to dole out its apps under the free model.

Freemium model is arguably the better of both free and paid. Instead of charging a one time fee or offering the app free of cost altogether, the developers can earn money in bits and pieces. Usually, this is achieved by locking some of the app features as paid ones. If the user finds value in the app, they have the option to unlock the premium features by paying for them. It’s actually is a perfect model where both parties to app stand to benefit from each other. Freemium model is more common among the gaming apps.

Paymium model has to be least popular of all the app monetization models. The reasons are far too obvious.The monetization approach seems to be far too blatant here. Under the Paymium model, the app has both an initial purchase cost and later the IAP costs. This model is more suited to top brands, offering premium services and top quality content that justify the cost of the app. High-end gaming apps tend to follow the Paymium model.


How do these models fare against each other?

Free Model
Free model is okay if you’re banking on creating a lot of buzz among the mobile audience. You’d also be hoping to acquire more and more investors and further enhance your revenue potential. But to actually make a generous amount of revenues a mobile application development company has to crack the market literally at an unprecedented level.

As mentioned earlier, Paymium happens to be the trickiest of all models to handle. If you can score in this model, then you can make a fortune. However, it’s not that simple. Paymium brings in the difficulties of both freemium and paid models. To implement it best, you’re expected to have a great audience reach, which is challenging without a considerable marketing budget.


Even if you do have the audience, getting money out of their pocket is again not that easy. Justifying your cost without even offering a free trial is a tough nut to crack. It’s still a new model, given most mobile users are accustomed to using free apps.


What actually sells?



Majority of the apps seem to follow the free or paid model.The latter stands to benefit with an upfront fee but no IAP. Paid apps rely on the marketing efforts and free trials to persuade the users to buy the app. Normally IAP is not a very popular option in paid apps, and one-time money from the user is all you can expect from an app. Freemium allows more room to play around. Customers could be made to contemplate spending what might seem like the huge amount of money after they’ve tried and tested the app in its entirety.


Also in a Freemium model, you could limit the number of advertisements that most app users find annoying. The answer to which model would suit your model is influenced by a variety of external factors. Such as are you a starter, how good is your audience-reach and what kind of an app are you making are some question that needs to be answered. Freemium is the best bet for most apps, but other models could prove just as beneficial to your app and therefore need not be neglected.


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