#1
Before you get out your pitchforks, I am not planning to switch PRO to a subscription and invalidate your previous purchase. However, the reality is, nzb360 is beginning to hit market saturation and upgrades to PRO are beginning to slow enough to where it is making it difficult to spend the time shipping a ton of new features and adding additional services without being able to recoup that effort through some sort of ROI. I also want to be able to add support for more niche tools such as Ombi, PlexPy, and lots of other smaller userbase tools, but I've always hesitated due to them being so niche (at least with nzb360 users).

I don't want to slow down on my development of nzb360, so I was thinking of some ideas that I wanted to run by you folks and gauge interest in a subscription option for nzb360 that would actually accelerate nzb360 development even moreso than my current pace.

Here is what I am thinking. I'd like to offer nzb360 Prime for $2.99/month, which would offer these types of features:
  • Access to an nzb360 beta program, where you get new features first and help shape how the new features work before they hit the production app.
  • Exclusive, dedicated, forum for Prime users where they can discuss new features that should be added to nzb360 Prime, help shape beta features, get sneak peaks for new features, etc.
  • Access to more niche tools, such as PlexPy, Ombi, LazyLibrarian, etc.
  • Access to all of PRO features (if you didn't already have PRO).
  • Access to an overall "Dashboard" view that sums up all of your services into a quick glance view of your most needed info.
  • Widget support for launchers
  • Potentially an exclusive nzb360 Usenet Indexer (this one might be difficult to pull off, but I am open to it).
  • Any new ideas folks come up with!
  • Most importantly, this would be a sort of a "Patreon" sub that keeps nzb360 afloat and supported for the long haul.
I've got some other feature ideas as well, but I am really hoping to get feedback on this type of approach for nzb360. I don't want to upset anyone, but I also need to keep and eye on how to keep nzb360 supported and maintained for the future. Trying to strike a good balance for all variables involved.

PRO users would still get most major features without needing to sub. Non-pro folks could subscribe to Prime and get all of PRO features while they're in the subscription, or could pay for PRO and not sub, but miss out on the Prime features.

Any feedback you may have would be much appreciated. I receive quite a bit of folks who ask how to donate to keep nzb360 supported, and this could be one opportunity to allow folks to contribute and get some additional value in return.

Thank you for any feedback!
#2
I think there are other options for you to get a better ROI instead of offering a subscription. I personally can't justify paying 2,99 a month to manage my services simply because lately I don't do very much with it. I add a show/movie every now and then and that's kind of it...

I can imagine there are more people who feel this way although I am positive there are more than plenty who have no problem with this ROI model.

I've thought of some other possibilities that you could consider:

1. Add-ons: NZB360 will be $X USD and supports NZBget/SabNZBD. Each additional service will come as an addon though IAP. Just like Termux. Then users can just pick the services they need. For example, $2 for Sonarr Addon or $2 for Widget Support, etc. Of course this wouldn't increase revenue neccesarily, but it could create incentive for new user to switch to NZB360 because they'll only have to pay for what they use. And the quality and design will be top notch, like it has been so far. With support for LL, plexpy, etc, this could attract more customers to the app.

2. Create an indexer like you mentioned and ask a yearly fee for that only. I think ~10 USD/EUR is very reasonable to begin with. The fee could be increased if the userbase (and bandwidth cost) increases of course. (BTW, I'll gladly help out with this).

3. Separate NZB360 from 'out-of-scope' features and create different apps for those. So next to NZB360 we get another app that manages PlexPy & Ombi. This will have its own fee in the Play Store. Same for a Widget and other relevant services that you are thinking of. Instead of putting everything in 1 single app, and increasing the price or implementing a subscription model, this would just enable a 2ndary income channel while you keep NZB360 at its current price.

Anyways, I don't know how you feel about these idea. Nor do I know what other users here might think of them. Maybe it sounds ridiculous, or maybe not. I'm just presenting some alternatives. If anyone has any input or his own ideas please post them.
#3
A difficult challenge.

For some people who baulk at $10 for a app, the subscription model will be a hard sell, regardless the value/usage of the app.

Personally I am happy with the app and there are very few features I actually need, however I accept that to keep the app moving forward and stable requires your time and time is a commodity that is in short supply. So for me, I would take the a yearly subscription, say $25. I don't need anything for it, beyond maintaining the app. I kind of do this already, but it does rely on a reminder in my diary :)

I am sure there is a core, who think the same as me, and the time saved, ease of use, would pay a price. However would that be enough to reward your time.

If you make it feature based, then you would need a poll on a regular basis, software to manage that poll, and record who would be charged for what, when a feature Is delivered, assuming that the feature they described would be what they had in mind.

I try to avoid beta software, unless it is a must have feature, and as I get older the risk versus reward of bleeding edge software is far less attractive.

Maybe I would suggest a poll - with the major options on it. With a description of how you think it would work - Don't forget a None of the above, and make sure a link to this thread goes out in the next update NZB360 update.

PS - I would prefer you avoid the indexer option, because of the potential problems it could bring you.
#4
Hi Kev.

Thanks for all your great work over the years.

I have been more than happy paying for the app twice

So are you saying that people that are PRO users, wouldn't have to sign up for the subscription service?

Are there many non-PRO users then? Perhaps an incentive to turn them into PRO users?

I like the idea of an indexer, but having run one myself for a year or two, you realise how much of your time it takes up, probably more time than you'd have free to update NZB 360.

I gave up running my NEWZNAB server and instead just subscribed to a few other indexers.

Generating income is always a head-ache and I hope you find a way of doing it.

Personally I wouldn't use Ombi, or PlexPY and I don't know what LazyLibrarian is.

We're all going to have different requirements.

Perhaps a $10 per year subscription would be an in between option, and phase out non-PRO users. You either have PRO, or nothing?

If I have any other suggestions, I'll come back and post.

Thanks again for all you hard work over the years.


#5
Thanks for the feedback, guys! This is good info that helps me shape the approach here. I know no one likes the idea of something like this. Everyone would rather get everything new for free, but the one exciting thing here is that a subscription would actually increase the speed in which I develop new features and design updates of nzb360. The biggest issue is that I have a lot of other projects, but I traditionally spend most of my time on nzb360. Doing this though, with the saturated userbase, makes it a lot tougher to spend the time knowing I can get a lot of ROI in other projects. I never plan to completely stop development of nzb360 though. Just need to juggle the time spent/ROI issue with all of my projects. A solid userbase of subscribers would keep the majority of my focus on nzb360.

"So are you saying that people that are PRO users, wouldn't have to sign up for the subscription service?"
Correct. Everyone's current PRO license would stay in tact regardless of any approach here. Nothing would change for PRO users. All of the same features today would continue to function with PRO. I am thinking that people who subscribe to Prime would also get PRO features if they didn't have PRO before, however.

PRO wouldn't get Prime features though.

So I am thinking of three tiers to nzb360.

1) Non-PRO, non-Prime. You get the same non-PRO experience today.
2) PRO, but non-Prime. You get the same PRO experience today. The majority of updates and new features would still make their way to PRO.
3) Prime subs. You get all of PRO + whatever Prime features that ends up coming that way.

I completely agree skarbd that an indexer might bring unwanted things my way. I wouldn't run my own necessarily, but maybe try and partner with an indexer out there already. Prime would just get you "free" access to that indexer. I don't really want to go down this route though, so trying to come up with better solutions for Prime users.

Thanks again for the feedback, gentleman. Keep the ideas/discussion going! :)
#6
Hi Kev,

Definitely one of the more polished apps out there. Just free thinking but some ideas below.

IMO you're possibly in danger of bloat now as the more features you add are only picked up by new 360 users and just get in the way of existing users already quite happy with.

FWIW The NZB scene is replete with people offering unlimited one of payments for a service but it's easy to see this business model has its flaws.

I agree with others that a subscription model for NZB360 probably shouldn't/couldn't exceed $1 a month.

1. Perhaps it's time for a survey? Possibly a short one you could build into your "What's New" process. Just to gauge how people are using your product now. A few yes/no questions like:

a. Do you use sonnar/raddar
b. Do you use the new torrent feature?
c. Do you use NZB360 search often?
d. Do you use NZB360 primarily to confirm downloads?
e. Does NZB do everything you need of it now?
etc.

My own personal use of NZB is just monitoring downloads with the very occasional impromptu download from a direct search. Not sure how wide spread this would be but suspect fairly. Could you build into your app some back to base reporting on this?

a. Was NZB360 app actively used today?
b. Was a Search Made?
c. Was something added?
etc.

But I would suggest you should cut the cord and perhaps move to a subscription model. Yes you've said PRO will always be upgraded forever but while there might be some outrage you've got a lot of customers that would appreciate the need.

1. You could just end updates on PRO. It is what it is and users are free to continue to use it. Start work on the new version and those that want to buy in use the new pricing policy.

2. Alternatively you could rejig the free, pro and prime features. Dumb down PRO to perhaps a straight reporting device. All interactive (and new) features would be moved to the PREMIUM tier.

The last thought is probably to give a 6 or 12 month heads up so all users understand the change is coming.

Actually one other thought is since you are moving to a subscription model then you can perhaps implement a referral system where a referral gets you 6? months free.

Anyway good luck with juggling the options.

Peter
#9
Still giving it some thought, just haven't had a ton of time to dedicate to nzb360 lately. It's one of the reasons I'd like to offer a subscription, as I can shift focus of other projects back to nzb360 if I have the obligation to continue to pump out awesome stuff to keep the value of the subscription high.

I just worry about upsetting the majority of the userbase. There isn't much I can do to prevent a ton of folks getting upset I think. Any change in pricing is usually met with a ton of backlash and criticism, even if nothing changes for the current userbase.

Still noodling on it.
#10
Kev, I think if you'd give the existing pro members some sort of discount, maybe one time or monthly sub at discounted rate for one year, it might work.

That way you can retain people for a longer period because people will stay, knowing that upon cancelling it they'll renew at the regular price. Might as well give a free prime to existing pro members for 6 months to let them try, like Amazon did to it's prime when they launched it. They gave a year free though and people had 3 months to opt in, then new customers had to pay for it.

I also like buying the add-on approach but that won't give you as much MRR as a subscription will.

Either way, I'm with you because I'm loving my PRO membership even though I don't use it extensively
cron