Movie Draft wrote:I just took a look at the MAS and it seems Ulysses III is now the only listed app - which is fine from their point of view - but what happens to the users whom bought a previous version and their computer crashed. Can they still download the old version or would they have to buy Ulysses III? Having never released a major update onto the MAS I'm not entirely sure how that works.
Well, it doesn't work. You've just discovered a major problem with the MAS. You can't charge for upgrades. You have two alternatives: you can release the (major) upgrade, as I did, and up the pricing for those who are purchasing for the first time but you then essentially give the upgrade to the existing user base for free (which, if you're feeling generous as I was, is OK); or, you release the upgrade as a new product with a different name and hope that it's sufficiently attractive for previous users to purchase it again. Some developers provide an upgrade path on their websites but that necessitates some sort of proof of purchase and a lot of effort to process it.
The recent episode with Final Cut Pro is an example of the second path. The new FCP has no upgrade path. You buy it again. At its release, it was not feature-complete, though it had a very impressive redesign, and the omissions caused colossal outcries of anguish and outrage from the professional users. Nevertheless, many bought it and in the ensuing year the development team has been steadily adding the missing features. Apple can get away with this because their simply massive war chest of cash allows them to offer FCP and other software for far less than it actually costs to develop them, buffer the initial drop in sales, and trust that the halo effect and generally excellent design will improve their overall profit in the long run.
For smaller developers this is not an attractive option.