Entry 5: In-App Purchases


After a few days working on the code, I've reached a point where I am able to create some functionalities that will enrich the user experience. While assembling the interface, I was wondering how I could make some money out of this project. After all, I am investing my time, knowledge and most likely some financial resources in the future. While researching all the ways photos can be copied to an iOS app, I've noticed that people tend to limit the number of assets that can be imported. My first thought was to use that approach and build an in-app purchase there. The app would allow the user to import one or two assets at a time for free and would require an in-app purchase to import more at a time. I didn't like that idea because it is very limiting to the core experience of the app. Instead, I would like to build in some extra features that would make the experience richer instead of putting a price tag on core features.

I think of it as positive and negative in-app purchases.  If my response to a popup informing me that I have to pay for a feature is "Shit... I'm barely using the app and it already wants money from me?" then it is a bad experience and a negative in-app purchase. However, if I'm using an app and enjoying it but there are some extra features that would make my life easier, then I as a consumer can decide if that particular feature is worth my money or not.

After working on the app for another 4 hours I was able to come up with two ideas that can be good candidates for in-app purchases. First is the ability to automatically remove images that are imported to the app. For example, if I would like to import 10 images, the app will import them and ask if I would like to automatically remove them from my Photos and iCloud library.

Second feature I started implementing is the ability to make photos even more anonymous. This feature will allow the user to have the option to remove all location and time data from photos. Not everyone would value this feature, but for those who would, they can pay a little bit extra to unlock this specialized option.

I think both features will attract some users who won't mind paying a dollar or two. However, people who don't need those will be glad to use the app for free.

What I did: Implemented the ability to delete assets from Photos and iCloud library that were imported to the app. Started on code that will remove all location and date data from imported pictures.

Time spent: 4 hours.

Total time spent on the project: 23 hours.