Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?

  • @makeixo For prominent Apps like WhatsApp or Instagram no payment will help, the interfaces are not public, so nobody can make those alternatives except the original publisher/company. You can make requests for them to do it, but probably they wont since a) they cannot easily port Java Apps to our platform b) UT misses a lot of functionality they would need and c) they cannot collect the data they want. So there is no incentive for bigger companies to port their Apps to UT (now).

  • @Flohack I know that there apps you can not create one but there are services you can. Furthermore I wasnt talking about whatsapp. In my personal opinion developer should have the option to earn some money as well. Maybe an survey would help to understand which apps would make UT more attractive. For me whatsapp is important too but its not the only app people use. If someone is thinking about switching the OS. Its more likely that he does it, when 8 or 9 / 10 apps exist he uses than only 2/10.

  • @makeixo As I already said, the maximum we can do is to link to a page of the developer. We cannot and will not step into a model where Openstore collects money, it would bring a lot of obligations, such as tax problems, and also problems of refunding money, making contracts with payment providers etc.

    Also, how do you solve the issue for the developer to not allow copying of the click package to other devices after payment? Neither UT nor Openstore currently can disallow that atm. It would need to have a signing method that incorporates a device key or so, and thats far from being easily introduced. Think of: People´s devices go broke, and they want to reinstall the software on a new device. Hwo do you deal with that? In the EU for example, it would be impossible to not have such a system where if you paid once for the App can also reuse it on another device. How Google does that? With extensive tracking of all devices on a central service. Which we do not want at all.

    As a dev I would be not interested in any system that does not pay me back every single usage of my licensed software. So thats a key point to solve.

  • @Flohack I dont remember saying that OpenStore should collect money. Earlier I stated that a Dev from SFOS found a - in my opinion - fair way to get paid. I havent bought something from him, therefore I dont know excatly how he did it or how the paying process works. I imagine his approach could be similar to the way the app you posted earlier. On the other hand I havent bought my Threema licence in the google play store either. I bought it on the homepage and have a licence key which works fine.

    Maybe the OpenStore is just the place where you can get the app, where it is marked as "non free" and where I can store my licence keys. Does the app at some point has to fetch some id from the device? Most likely but for me personally that is ok as long as its transparent.

    Look, I dont think we have to figure out a way which works a 100% in every corner in the word right now. Nor do I think that UBports has to solve every possible problem. Let dev think about how he prevents that the whole city does not use only one licence.

    Interestingly enough nothing has be implemented today or in 3 month. We are not in a hurry here.

  • @makeixo As @Flohack pointed out already: UbPorts cannot collect money on behalf of a 3rd party (the developer), at least not without a bulk of legal implications, not to speak of time, resources and manpower to invest in setting up such a scheme. I think it should already be possible for developers to upload free trial version on OpenStore which need be unlocked once the trial period has exdpired. So the user would have to buy some form of license code from the dev and likely provide something like a device ID. But this is then a business between the end user and the dev. I dont´t see why and how UbPorts should be involved in such a deal as a broker. UbPorts should invest resources and manpower in what they are doing best, which is OS development.

  • @nogoogle said in Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?:

    UbPorts cannot collect money on behalf of a 3rd party (the developer),

    Pls, tell me where I said this!

  • @makeixo How else its gonna work? You did not suggest this, but its a logical step implicated. If you have an idea that is complete and covers all potential areas without UBports being a broker for Apps, then suggest it, and find people to implement it 😉

  • By the way, its for the same reasons that traditional Linux distros do not have a payment system builtin. And yes, I agree, that does not foster growing a developer universe like it exists now for Android and iOS. If people do not need to care for getting reliable, steady income for their work, why would they spend the time it needs to make good Apps? For Google & Apple this is a precondition to raising the quality of the platform - and yes, quality will matter one day also for UT. But for the moment, we have much different priorities on the core OS and hardware.

  • @Flohack I have installed Piepmatz. After 14 days I will see how he does it. As far as I know you can choose as well how much you want to pay (3, 5 or x €) - I hope I havent chosen the wrong app. 😂

    Considering neither the Jolla Store nor OpenRepos offer a payment system it has to work somehow inside the app.

  • @makeixo Payments for Piepmatz is a service provided by This is something developers can set up for themselves within their apps. It might be something developers can pick up when developing for UT too. But this has got nothing to do with OpenStore.

    Edit: Hm, maybe if the services are free unless some payment is done, then maybe OpenStore could use this feature and provide it for all apps? I don't know. Someone with more legal knowledge would have to look into this.
    Spreading the word about this service might be the most practical thing to do...

  • @danfro Thank you for clarifying that.

    Thats the reason I stated this

    @makeixo said in Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?:

    Maybe the OpenStore is just the place where you can get the app, where it is marked as "non free" and where I can store my licence keys.

    I never would expect that Ubports/OpenStore sells stuff - aside maybe some Shirts 😂 . You need the infrastrcuture for this. At the end it just makes a lot of trouble. Flo already stated the tax issues etc ...

    On the other hand just saying that not possible ... , thats not possible ... , thats not possible ... isnt maybe the way either I think.

    Maybe some day the Ubports foundation can get into a partnership with a company like digistore, which has the infrastructure an provides "within the app" payment.

    Like I said before. We are not in a hurry. Let the idea breathe.

    *partnership is meant in the way that not every dev has to set it up for themself, figure out a way how it is build in easily etc... and not meant that OpenStore collects money through digistore.

  • @makeixo said in Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?:

    Maybe the OpenStore is just the place where you can get the app, where it is marked as "non free" and where I can store my licence keys

    OpenStore wouldn't know the difference (and there are multiple meanings of the word "free" not all having to do with money). Also, it doesn't make sense for OpenStore to provide some API for license keys when it doesn't do anything else related to paid apps, in-app purchases, nor tracking.

    Even on Android, for paid apps, if you really want to enforce licensing, you need a third party server to validate licensing.

  • @dobey said in Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?:

    (and there are multiple meanings of the word "free" not all having to do with money).

    Wow, now we are already there? If you dont think it doesnt cover all philosophical meanings we can call "you have to spent money on apps" or what ever, I am not even a native speaker and that was the first term which came to my mind, I thought people would understand what I mean and those apps should be marked somehow, therefore I used it.

    Guys, if you are against it, then just say it upfront.

  • @makeixo Well, Debian does not have a proprietary app store, but does have "nonfree" archive for example.

    So no, it's not clear, and again OpenStore cannot know which apps may require you to purchase something inside the app or not. Many web services are freemium, too, so just because you can buy premium/ad-free support for that service, doesn't mean the app itself that is in the open store, is paid nor non-free.

    As an example, Spotify API only works for premium members, but CuteSpotify is a native third party app for listening to Spotify and uses the API. You need a paid account to use the app, but the app is free software and you do not need to pay for the app itself.

    There isn't a line in sand where paid and free is a binary thing, nor for proprietary and free in terms of software. Nobody is against you making a paid app and putting in the store. But we are trying to explain to you why certain things can't work as you've suggested they should.

  • @dobey said in Paid proprietary apps on Open Store?:

    Nobody is against you making a paid app and putting in the store.

    WTF? To be clear! I dont have that intention. Its not about me making money.

    I think I will leave it there. I have meant it in good faith, but I think it does not make any sense to go further.

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