As I reflect today on Apple’s launch of iPhone 4S, I realize the concept of an “app store” has become part of our lives. More and more devices are supporting apps, and the ubiqitious app store is the method by which they are disseminated. When I’m downloading something for my phone, it isn’t supposed to be a long “sell cycle”. Sales guys don’t come to my apartment to show off the features. Nobody takes me to lunch. There is no golf involved. I just research the app, maybe by reading some blogs, and then I buy it.
You may say the absence of the sale cycle reflects the price, but I don’t think so. Software is software, and, a need is a need.
What I don’t get is why the enterprise software industry can’t operate this way. Let’s build our app store! Software, no matter how critical or complex, should be downloadable from the web. Like the popular “Angry Birds” game, purchases should follow the freemium model. You download a trial version for free; maybe it’s missing some features, or maybe it’s only for a limited time. If it turns out that you like the software, or better yet, NEED the software to keep your business running smoothly, you pay for the rest of it. And, you pay with a credit card. This format shows particular promise in the areas of application performance management and real user monitoring.
Recently I purchased a brand new TV. When I got home I realized that it’s more of a computer than a television. It has an app store! Hundreds of things that I can use for free or buy depending on my needs. If the television industry can do this, why can’t we? At Correlsense, we have. The app store is up and running! You can use our real user monitoring Express Edition in production, on one app, with two collectors. Use it: it’s yours – just download it. . If you want to see more, you buy it. Online. At our app store.
I’m still waiting for the day that a blog tells me a cellular vendor has finally downloaded billing software X, or the GE just installed ERP software Y. Hopefully someday my dream will come true. If nothing else, it will cost less!