How can we improve the Windows platform?

Show a paid app w/ a "trial" option in the "free apps" category

When I create a paid app with a trial option, many users blow right by it because it doesn't show up in the "free" category even though a light version of the app is free (via the trial).

Some people are resorting to the super-inefficient Apple app store method of releasing 2 versions of the app... one that shows up in the "free" category and another that runs as a paid app. The "trial" is a fantastic concept, but it is hobbled by this oversight

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    matthiasmatthias shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    37 comments

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      • Christos MatskasChristos Matskas commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I frequently download trial apps to test before I buy and I agree with most comments so far that trials apps should be visible to the user. In most free-to-try cases, you want users to play around with your app before deciding whether to ditch it or buy it. Listing trial apps in the paid section seriously harms downloads because most users want free stuff and only pay for apps that add value. A separate section "Free-to-try" makes more sense and leaves free and paid categories untouched.

      • Robert McLawsRobert McLaws commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Not sure why your reply was so snarky, Morten, but there are plenty of apps that are paid that shouldn't have ads. I have an app for New Relic in certification that doesn't have ads in the trial or paid versions, the trial limits functionality so you can see how it works a few times, and then pay for it. While I agree that IAP is a good use case for removing ads, it does not solve the problem I just described.

      • Morten NielsenMorten Nielsen commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Terrible terrible idea. This is what we have in-app purchases for. Make your app free-free, and use in-app purchases to remove the ads (this seem to be the main usecase people here blabber on about)

      • Gary RitterGary Ritter commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I do the same thing Jeff B. "NOTE: Trial is FULL VERSION but with ads." is the leading line in all my description.

      • Jeff B.Jeff B. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I started putting the text "Trial version is non-expiring (ad supported)" as the very first line in my description and it has helped somewhat with downloads. However, I am strongly considering adding a second " - FREE" version of the app as well, although I really don't want to have to do that. Being able to include these in the "free" section (or another section such as "Ad Supported") would be a great improvement.

      • Graham O'NealeGraham O'Neale commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Also solution I see is free+paid should be a category. Honestly, in the end they are both free to download. If you wish to upgrade the features, or remove ads, or something like that, then you can pay. It should still initially be listed under free because it is (at whatever functionality level has been set by the developer).

      • Graham O'NealeGraham O'Neale commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        If Microsoft haven't realised this is a massive problem and oversight yet, I don't know what hope we have of it been done in the future :( I too release two versions, free and paid, get about 20x more downloads (honestly) than trials.

      • Vsevolod AlekseyevVsevolod Alekseyev commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I feel I'm losing trial downloads to sticker shock. My app is perfectly functional in trial mode, but I feel that when people see the price tag, they don't even consider that - they're scared away. Compared to other platforms (that are neither Android nor iOS), my WP8 trial download count is miniscule.

        For now, I'm going to reengineer my app to use in-app-purchase-based licensing so that I can list it as free.

      • mayurmayur commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I buy sm app and nxt tym i see d same app, it gives two option either try or buy.

      • RicoRico commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Another suggested options (should be visible in free and not called trials):
        - Free with option to donate for the app...
        - Free with ads, paid without ads

      • AneticsAnetics commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        An app is either FREE or its not, there is no grey area

        Lite versions of apps are just trials in disguise,

        My definition of a FREE app is a fully functional product that i dont have to pay for

      • David LorenzinDavid Lorenzin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Best solution is to have 3 sub-choices
        in case of Trial
        PAID:
        Trial:
        - time expires
        - time unlimited but feature limited (in this case to be listed on FREE too!)
        - with banner

      • JoshJosh commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Free = no cost and no strings. Creating a new category is a better option.

      • Ravi MRavi M commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        yes, technically trial apps are free apps for limited time or with limited functionality.

      • CarlosCarlos commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is a terrible idea. If you have a paid app and the same app free but with ads then there SHOULD be two versions, trial is supposed to be a taste of a paid app not a fully featured app with a different business model.

      • andyctedandycted commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        By the way, wouldn't your solution cause an inflation of fake trial apps, just to go under the free section ?

      • andyctedandycted commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        @paul, yep, understood that too, but in my opinion there are less free-plus-paid apps which are "illegitimate", rather than the opposite,free plus trial-double as paid... Meaning I've seen more free, functional, legit apps/games, that have a paid counterpart, than free plus paid with trial double
        Anyway, something could be done for apps visibility in general. In this regard, I regrettably think the marketplace team is sorely closed on feedback, judging from previous issues.
        My only concern is that really free apps are only listed in their section...

      • Paul HarmanPaul Harman commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        @andycted - understood, but any solution that doesn't have trial apps appearing in the free section is going to cause "app inflation" where developers submit their trial-crippled apps into the free section with in-app upgrades [something I hate, but if it's the only way to get any kind of exposure...]. So Microsoft would have to crack down on that too.

      • andyctedandycted commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Mmmh, actually I think that would clog the free section, in absence of a differentiation between real trial-before-you-buy apps and free trial plus bonus content ones.
        I think a filter in the paid section would be better

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