Microsoft wants a bigger cut of the revenue from Windows developers

Developers building apps for Microsoft's Windows Store could potentially earn less money starting January 1, 2015. A change to the App Developer Agreement that takes effect next year would take away an appealing incentive for developing for Windows as developers could earn less money selling apps than they do currently.

Currently, Microsoft is making it attractive to develop for Windows devices with a 30-70 split. Developers would earn 70 percent of the money while Microsoft will take a 30 percent cut for payment processing, hosting, and pushing out updates. That cut drops to just 20 percent after a developer has earned $25,000 in sales.

Per the agreement:

The Store Fee for Apps made available in the Windows Store is thirty percent (30%) of Net Receipts, unless and until your App takes in total Net Receipts of USD$25,000, after which time the percentage is 20% for that App. The twenty-percent (20%) Store Fee will be in effect until December 31, 2014.

However, effective January 1, the 20 percent cut after $25,000 of sales would be eliminated and developers would just earn 70 percent on app sales no matter how much volume they generate.

In its new agreement, Microsoft wrote:

Beginning January 1, 2015, the Store Fee for all Apps made available in the Windows Store will be thirty percent (30%) of Net Receipts.

What do you think of Microsoft's new terms for developers?

Source: Microsoft (opens in new tab) via Neowin

Chuong Nguyen

Chuong's passion for gadgets began with the humble PDA. Since then, he has covered a range of consumer and enterprise devices, raning from smartphones to tablets, laptops to desktops and everything in between for publications like Pocketnow, Digital Trends, Wareable, Paste Magazine, and TechRadar in the past before joining the awesome team at Windows Central. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, when not working, he likes exploring the diverse and eclectic food scene, taking short jaunts to wine country, soaking in the sun along California's coast, consuming news, and finding new hiking trails. 

  • Lol not yet. Not so fast micro$oft.
  • That Giant that shot himself on the foot
  • It's to early for this. Why take away incentives from dev's if so many aren't supporting Windows and WP. Don't take away but give more instead would be my model. I think this is not good. Happy dev's means happy employees thus excellent applications for the platform.
  • MSFT should take splits based upon quality as a way to incentivize quality apps. The better the app, the less of a cut MSFT would take.
  • This would be brilliant, but coming up with an opjective measurement of "quality" would be difficult. Devs would be angry all the time when they disagree with the ranking.
  • well honestly most devs dont hit the target 25k anyway so they are really only taking it from  larger devs, not to mention if youre making 25k off your app as a small dev there really is no reason you would turn your back on them to begiin with, this doesnt really affect most people and the ones it does arent really concerned.
  • Are you kidding?? Microsoft offers the cheapest rate for having developer account, unlike Google and apple who charge annually. Also extra 10% cut for >$25000 would mean nothing to a developer unless he is very greedy and fked up in his mind!
  • Agree. But why take away. MSFT should continue adding instead. More incentives over iOS and droids. Thus happier dev's and better apps against their platforms.
  • Because they just gave away a very feature full version of visual studios?
  • I don't think the average person, not developer, will get what a great deal MS just gave this week.
  • Ahem. Google has a low one time fee as microsoft. 
  • And they always had this (I signed up for a Android dev account in 2009 for $25) and didn't just change the policy when they realized that nobody would build apps for them. He he...
  • The 10% drop down was genius (at least in theory), in that it gave incentive for developers to produce quality apps, and to keep supporting those apps. MS of couse undermined that whole thing with their ridiculous $100/app -campaigns.
  • And Microsoft is somehow not greedy for wanting that extra 10% for themselves?
  • How dare Microsoft have the exact same split as their competitors! Microsoft was generous in offering a discount for generating revenue while attracting devs, but it seems it isn't doing enough good to get people to start developing for Windows. So they are just removing an early adoption benefit for their developers.
  • Yeah get your facts right, google is the cheapest store to register on
  • It would have been right if they were giving away windows 10 for free to all windows 7&8 customers. Lets hope they do.
  • Sends completely fair to me, given that MS is giving away Windows on low cost devices, and Visual Studio to developers. This is the way the market is moving... charge less/free for the is, and make it up on the back end. Microsoft didn't come up with that... it's the way they are being dragged.
  • You should work for your employer for free.
  • Who said anything about free?
  • @mjrtoo:   I was refering to salmanaltef's comment about how microsoft should make windows 10 free to windows 7/8 customers.
  • If anything MSFT should've made it a 10-90 split at least until they eclipsed a 1,000,000+ threshold of total apps. With that split they'd have that mark by the end of Q1 2015.
  • Agreed. They should have set it up in reverse: 20% fee for revenue up til $25,000 to get them to develop and then 30% afterwards.
  • Excellent. I'm going to create a new, competing store where I'll charge devs 10% after 2k downloads. Until then they'll be no fees They can develop multi touch apps in Visual studio for deployment via my 3rd party store. They'll run in Windowed mode just like metro apps in Windows 10.
    My 3rd party store will soon be bigger than Microsoft's, and will work just like the various AOSP stores. Microsoft won't see a penny..
    Of course it will be full of malware ridden junk 'cos I won't police it.
    Devs will love it though 'cos I'll give them a much better cut, they can develop in nice free Visual Studio (or anything else they fancy), and it will be very open, malware friendly with no policies.
    Consumers will love it because they'll get their favourite apps a bit cheaper.
    I have even thought of a domain name.
    Good luck Microsoft.
  • The question to ask is, how does this compare to the Apple and Androids stores?
  • They are and always have been 30% no matter what. So the 10% extra income has been a bonus that only Microsoft offered.
  • Hence incentive. Its unfortunate, but developers aren't going to abandon the WINDOWS ecosystem because if 10%. It might make it harder to get new devs studios on board,but only in the mobile space. They could just develop full applications (not Windows Store Apps) and remove the middleman.
  • Also note that unlike other stores, developers are allowed to use their own payment methods and completely bypass Microsoft. There are even training modules on Microsoft's official portals showing you how to do so. While it's unlikely that most would because of the work involved and the effect on the customer, the option is there to get a much larger slice of the pie if you want to.
  • I didn't know this. It's not likely that I'll ever write an app so popular that I'd have to roll out my proffered payment gateway, but always nice to know the option is there
  • Also note that unlike other stores, developers are allowed to use their own payment methods and completely bypass Microsoft.
    I can state this is absolutely true. My PocketBible app by Laridian does this. It is completely free to download and use. If you want to use the advanced feature set, you pay for it, directly through Laridian. If you want to purchase additional bible versions or commentaries, you do it through the publisher. All purchases are tied to the account you set up with them when you first run the program, so you never lose anything if you need to reinstall on a new device.  Microsoft gets $0 from them because of this.  However, to set up such a system, you need to be a pretty solid company to be able to pull it off. 
  • Pretty sure that option is there for Google Play -apps as well, unless they have changed their policy at some point.
  • Android and Apple both 30/70 I guess
  • If Apple and Google offer 30/70, then Microsoft should offer 15/85 or some such. A larger slice of the pie can help offset Microsoft's market share disadvantage in the eyes of developers.
  • Just in time to make sure they don't gain any traction.
  • You're right. sadly
  • Yeah, this can only help WP prosper... WP already has a lack of apps people want because developers are concerned with the viability of a WP user base. This may only help to cause a wider app gap than already exists. To think most apps were caught up... Now, less incentive will create another divide. Sucks ass.
  • Boo
  • Berry?
  • Well if I made over $25,000 with my app I guess I'd be ok with a 70% cut.
  • True! And that's why they did it.
  • Unless you have high overhead which is a real possibility.
  • Now even less apps will come out
  • Why? Do you think all apps make 25,000 dollars? Of course not, so don't say that.
  • This only affects apps that make less than 25,000.
  • Don't you mean "only affects apps that make MORE than 25,000"?
  • Yeah.... Where it's that chalkboard when you need it?
  • Yes.
  • As a developer, I think they should actually reverse it to attract more developers. Only a 20% cut if you are making less than $25,000 and it jumps up to 30% when you reach over $25,000 in sales.
  • Second that
  • That makes more sense.
  • They need to attract the big apps that likely will make more than $25,000. No one cares if some small niche app isn't available. They care that that the popular apps aren't there. However, the 10% bigger cut probably doesn't mean much to the big app developers. They care about user numbers.
  • That is a very good point, that I hadn't considered! But at the same time the 30% stake after $25000 would be the same cut that the other app stores would be taking as well.
  • Just cause Someone else only does thirty doesn't make it ok for MS. Jump off a bridge lately?
  • Well, dev registration is pay once and never again. They knew this was coming
  • I do not... and here's why... if you make a superior product and platform they will come. Set it straight now.
  • That actually makes a lot more sense.
  • This makes more sense to be quite honest.
  • Seconded~!
  • So I'm curious, are they trying to gain or lose developers? If anything they should be letting developers have a free year just to get as many apps on the store as possible.
  • Microsoft's ecosystem is already the cheapest ecosystem to develop and publish for lol...
  • And least lucrative with least number of users
  • Not entirely treu. The Windows Store did almost match Google Play's reveneu stream in 2013, with only a fraction of the users. If marketshare was an indication, Google Play would own the appmarket, but they dont. Apple's App Store does. Windows Phone does'nt have to grow much to overtake Google Play and become the second biggest Appstore, by reveneu stream, in the world. So I would say Android is the least apealing platform to develop for, if you want to make some money. Its overcrowded and underpayed.  
  • Not good enough lol. Make it free for their first year. 100% gods to the developer. Gotta spend money to make money. ;)
  • They figured they have over 500,000 apps combined now. With the release of Windows 10 way more devs are gonna come along. They have leverage just like apple and Google. I guess...?...
  • Windows 10 and developers may turn out to be one of the biggest flops... Stop predicting.
  • Nah, it won't be flop, it will be a success on a scale of 7.5, 8.0 and 8.1.
  • So why dont't you?
  • I never predicted, moron.
  • Watch your language.
    Windows 10 and developers may turn out to be one of the biggest flops
    This is predicting, to me...
  • Technically a Microsoft developer license is $20 for life, whereas Apple and Google charge an annual rate that's even more expensive.
  • We need developers,
    developers... to stay away from this platform...
  • Let me correct you.
    Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers to help.
  • Clap, clap, clap, clap
  • Slap, slap, slap, slap
  • I got the clap, clap, clap......
  • Lol
  • This is great. Just what the app market needed. To get bogged down.
  • Don't worry, just wait for Windows 10......
  • The mantra of the Windows Phone user, "Just wait for... Coming soon!"
  • I'm tired of seeing that. Y'all are the most unappreciative people in the world. Do you realize Windows 8.1 just recently came out? And it was a great freaking update. No wonder Microsoft doesn't put WP users first. At least iOS and Android users appreciate what Microsoft gives them. I'm a Windows Phone user, and I'm perfectly find with what Windows Phone is now.
  • You sir, deserve more upvotes!
  • Please look forward to it.
  • This ^^
  • Ain't gonna happen.
  • You have to step back and think what this means. To me, I see free Win10 updates, maybe as far back as Vista, maybe free. Looks like they're trying to make up for revenue somewhere. If they get more people on board with free Win10, devs will do better, even without the drop to 20%.
  • I don't see any problem with this. A 30% fee to get worldwide exposure and distribution, including an update service, on one of the worlds largest (and growing) ecosystems - with little or no up front payment! And now they even give you the development system, Visual Studio 2015 Community, for free. This is an absolute bargain!
  • Guess their making up for loss of renewing dev account fee, & dev tools going free
  • Hahaha they would be so lucky we are making Windows apps... Android and ios first!!!!
  • Are they deliberately trying to squish any momentum they were gaining or are they just plain stupid
  • A combination of both I think..
  • I knew that's what they were gonna do when they made the dev center subscription infinite!! Dang it!! Ots already hard enough cause the fact that you have to make $200 just to get it inserted into your bank account...
  • This change will make it the same as Apple's terms for their Store apps. No idea what Google charges, but I suspect it will be the same. Microsoft stood alone with this incentive, but it never really created much developer interest. So it is no big loss
  • Really. I mean REALLY?
  • Think again. They doubled the number apps in one year.
  • No way of knowing if it was specifically due to this incentive. The incentive only applied to apps that generated in excess of US$25,000 in sales. I doubt the vast majority of those apps would get anywhere near that level of app sales revenue. Many are free
  • LMAO The irony that this news is being reported on a day that the Windows Store was down for hours. Well played, Microsoft. Well played.
  • This is only an issue with people on these type of sites. Microsoft offer sooo much more for free/less than others but people always want them to take less.  As someone who knows a little bit about marketing, Lowering your price can hurt your brand/product in many cases as raising the price.
  • Two steps forward, two steps back.
  • I believe Apple and Google both are 30% flat.  Microsoft hasn't really had them all lining up, despite the discount.  Thing is, that 30% means that you don't have to deal with payment processing, hosting, or deployment of updates.  Microsoft needs money to maintain the infrastructure while also making a slight profit in the process.  Since 30% is the going rate, this is not a big deal.  The increased ease of converting to Windows plus the possibility of growth due to better operation on the desktop all can lead to more Store usage - plus Windows Phone Store actually is a fairly active marketplace.  The merger creates a unique Store that caters to mobile, desktop, business, consumer, etc.  There is no Android marketplace that allows you to deploy the same app to phones, tablets, and desktop/laptops.  Same for iOS.  And Continuum may expand to allow an adaptive UI for a single app that can shift depending on screen size and device.  These are big advantages.   If MS can get 200-250 million copies of Windows 10 out with millions upon millions of active Windows Store users (not counting millions of Windows Phones, etc), it makes the Store quite viable.  If MS makes it easy to develop or port to Windows Store with a low investment, people will come.  The Universal App store is fascinating a lot of developers.  Especially since it opens up the Desktop.
  • I agree with this
  • Ok. Go jump off a bridge cause a crowd of retards thinks it's cool.
  • Precisely!
  • Fact is that they're giving Windows away free on tablets. Which grows the customer base. This is one way to make their money back
  • Yeah, I figured Microsoft would do this some time soon, since they're starting to depend on their services and the cloud to make money instead of Windows itself.
  • MSFT should be subsidizing developers to attract more of them...this is a disincentive.
  • So, the third place mobile platform (by a HUGE margin) is going to make it even less attractive for developers to jump on board...good choice Microsoft
  • Now developers will surely rush to their platforms!
  • Microsoft great at killing their own
  • Kill it in the cradle.
  • Coat hanger job more like
  • Am o reading it wrong or does it actually generate MORE money for devs. The 30% fee drops to 20%. So you earn 80%. Am I reading it wrong?
  • Yeah, you have it backwards. Even if you are currently earning 80% revenue due to hitting the threshold, you'll now be getting 70%.
  • @kellzea They will remove the 20% drop incentive next year.
  • The numbers seem fair $25k is no small feat of success this change probably wont effect that many developers
  • Wow. Way too early.
  • With over 80% of market share and nearly 1.4 million apps in the store, who needs developers anyway? Smart move!
  • This is everything we need to definitive close the store. They need to incentive developers, not make they go away.
  • The way I see it there gonna scare the developers they have now away. They are moving way to fast. I say draw more people into the windows platform and then strike. Guess I wont really be seeing Candy Crush, Deer Hunter 2014 etc anytime soon.
  • You weren't going to see them regardless. No matter what Microsoft does, they wont get devs who want them to go away. I mean, they collaborate a bunch with EA, and still WP doesn't have pvz2.
  • One less reason to make apps. We need that. /sarcasm
  • I was hoping they would just move to an 80/20 split for everyone. Make it up through volume. On the other hand, they do provide the most tools and assistance by far for free. Along with having access to BizSpark, etc.
  • God companies can be so greedy Microsoft is one of the richest companies in the world they don't need to do this I'd understand if they weren't a 60+ billion dollar company
  • Are you retarded? Just because a company is big doesnt mean everything should be free, tell me, how much do you think allll those giant servers costs to run a day? How much do you think it costs to pay devs to develop windows 10? How about windows phone? How much do you think it costs to manufacter the phone your holding? How much do you think it costs for all the employees in all those plants? How about Onedrive, think thats developed for free? How about all those dev tools they give away for free? Do you think the devs built them for free? NO. so why.. in the fuck do you think its "greedy" to take 30%? You are so damn ignorant, grow the hell up and learn how the world works.
  • This. It can easily take a year to develop a decent app (especially a game), $25k is very little for a year's work.
  • Look at Microsoft's bottom line....and their huge profits. Then reassess your comment..!
    Microsoft can afford to incentivise development on the Windows platform.
  • Oh, so a company should stop trying to make a bigger profit because they already make one? what is this china?   incentivise? is paying a 1 time cheap fee to dev for life and being given an expensive tool for free not enough?
  • What are you, 9 years old?
  • Because developers are gagging to climb on the WP bandwagon? Maybe they should ignore Satya's advice to women and ASK for a reduction, say 20% flat rate until the WP platform gets closer in market share to android and ios.
  • Nothing is free in this world.
  • In the app store / windows ecosystem current state, MS should let developers keep almost all the revenue. MS = idiots
  • Am I the only one that reads this as a 10% REDUCTION in the fees Microsoft is collecting? They currently collect 30% of the revenue, then it will be 20% if it is a popular app. I think this article needs to be revised.
  • Yes, you're the only one.
    Until 31st December - devs will earn 80% of app revenue past the $25,000 threshold
    After 31st December - devs will earn 70% of app revenue regardless of how much revenue they make.
  • Oh good, I thought they'd never find a way to get rid of all those pesky developers, with their annoying support of the Windows ecosystem. Finally, we can have no apps in peace.
  • Hilarious
  • Lmao these idiots just keep shooting themselves in the foot
  • A lot of you miss the big picture... With a unified store, app prices can go up slightly too. Plus, you can make money in other ways like in-app features, etc. The costs get offset that way.
  • Hmm, I agree... Too soon. Are they really that strapped? Hmm.. Just wondering the why...
  • My assumption is that windows will start becoming free at some point and this how to recoup those loses. As well, if Windows does go free, there will be a lot of developer interest. If windows does go free, this makes sense.
  • Make sense
  • So they're lagging behind ios and android and they are trying to be greedy? They obviously need to hire smarter people....
  • Bad idea.
  • Hold Up *Nate Doggs Voice*
  • Seems fair to me.
  • With the merging of W and WP dev portals I was wondering when the > $25,000 would come to WP, but it looks like it is going the other way and they are bringing the same rates for WP over to W. Now I don't think it is bad because having multiple payout rates is a bit messy. What I hope this means is that the also absorb some of the other 'hidden' fees such as the 13.9% fee developers pay ON TOP of the 30% fee for carrier payments as opposed to credit card payments in certain regions. I think if they are going to streamline it to a uniform 30% (taxes obviously remain varied per region) and do away with the other add on fees it will be great! Unsure if they are doing that tho?
  • So hurry up and he your apps in by the end of the year... Hummm... Duh!
  • You do know that it costs money to manage and maintain the store right? Or would you just prefer a stale store that never gets updated? Someone has to pay for it.
  • Um, they were earning 30% until the app makes $25k then it drops to 20%, now they want 30% no matter what. How were they not making money for the store with the present arrangement? Any comparison to iOS or Android is ill relevant, WP has a much smaller market share and also there is still an app gap with some major types of apps missing. The way to grow the store is to make it attractive to developers. Yes Windows 10 is (supposed) to have universal app ability, but not every app written can or will be a Universal app. I really doubt it is going to work as easily as many think, write an app in universal and it works across everything, um think about it, not happening.
  • With all the free offering Microsoft has for startups and nee devs bizspark, free visual studio up to 5 people and even free dev licence thru Dev benefits
  • I can only come to one logical conclusion as to why Microsoft "might" be doing this. With the changes coming allowing developers to more easily develop a universal app for Windows, Windows Phone and Xbox360 but the consumer only pays once, the change doesn't sound as unreasonable. If Microsoft can make a compelling case that developing for the entire Microsoft ecosystem with universal apps is a bargain at that price because demand for quality apps will be heavy with that combined user base then they will have finally created a solid reason for developers to look at them with a new pair of eyes with rosy colored lenses.
  • Oh yeah, really smart. They're already have developers begging to develop for the Windows Store, nothing says "enticing" as much as "you're gonna earn LESS!"
  • Clawing back incentives is not exactly the best strategy for building an app market.
  • It's a very wrong decision... Developers should be encouraged at this time.
  • I don't see the problem with this. Its not like they are raising their cut to 50% or something. And most likely it won't effect anyone.
    People are just overreacting!
  • I'm pretty sure it won't affect anyone. That is not a good thing.
  • 30% of $25,000 is like $8,000 leaving you with $17,000... Thats a big chunk... How exactly do they need this much to "manage the store" (other people speculated this). I think its alot... And so will any developer who's on the fence about developing for this platform to begin with!!!
  • Who's running this company?  Microsoft already has so few apps compared to Google and Apple. Now is not the time to get greedy.
  • The greed has never done any good to anyone. The allure cannot be superficial lest most developers will stop thinking about selling their apps to MS. Not a healthy decision. I think before Jan MS will change in this decision....
  • Seems reasonable
  • Well... If at least you pay me what I have earned... The payment process is bizarre...
  • this will surely boost the growth of our app store. everyone will be rushing to make even less money with ms now. it's brilliant.
  • Hahahahaha exactlyyy
  • Sick of this "Just wait for Windows 10".. Windows Phone users have been waiting since forever..
  • 7.5 was "HUGE". 8.1 was "HUGE. 10 will be "HUGE". And so on... It wont and can't, end. Times change. Needs change. They need to catchup and then keep up. And it seems like they are trying. In the beginning they seemed slow... (wp7) since the waters were probably being tested
  • Windows 10 ain't gonna do shit. Can't wait to see people explain it after all predictions...
  • This is very old news which was announced with WP 8.1 IIRC. It had to do with merging the WP and Win8 stores and allowing users to buy on one store and own the same app on the other store. That meant they had to unify the rev share model. Of course they went with the %30 all the way model instead of giving the same incentive across both platforms...  
  • Windows phone apps are of 3rd grade,featureless. Now it will be reduced to a joke.
  • Sounds like Microsoft wants a larger portion of a smaller pie... The execs must be reading "intro to business for idiots" books....
  • The funny thing is that devs barely wana make apps for this platform to begin with. Mwahahahahahahaha MS u and ur typical decisiooonnnnnssss
  • This is a stupid move clearly
  • seems like a totally reaosnable move given that every developer is working day and night producing the best apps for windows!  i wonder if this will affect even ray ozzie's intense devotion to app dev't for windows!
  • Typical, owner of Cheese Zombie Games here.  We have 4 games in the WP store.  What MS should do is make it a 5/95 split if they want to attract devs.  I just may come back then.  After 30% and then another x% for illustrator commissions and whatever else one needs it's no wonder we have a race to the bottom.  I can't wait for the day when a gateless phone OS provider arrives with something better and with a business model that doesnt prey on developers and whales.
  • $25,000 is a lot to begin with to reach that limit...
  • Thank you MSFT for making my life as a developer easier! I was thinking that MSFT would do something radical, like lower their cut to 10% to jumpstart Universal App development. Now I *know* that I won't develop anymore WinRT-based programs. Yearly sales of my WP app only amount to about one day's worth of sales of my Win32 programs ... and my Win32 reseller only takes around 6% of the order. It's funny. I didn't think MSFT could become more stupid than they were with Win8/WinRT ... yet here we are.  
  • So sorry to hear about this. Seriously, I don't understand MS right now.
  • 30%+ 5% transaction i guess, not much left for devs.
  • Well that is after $25000 you make out of single app right?
  • Does this include for in app purchases as well? Or just the app cost?
  • They are not going to change this stupid decision of them... We may criticize to our most limits. But Microsoft will remain stupid and appless and thus profitless... Then they will be crying in budget Q2 next year.... Cutting 18000 employees, decreasing profits and all that crap that it always does
  • Is anybody really surprised? I mean there's a reason why Microsoft stays profitable and it ain't charity. Of course, like everything else (XBOne, Windows, WP, office, etc) if it doesn't work out, they'll "backtrack" and give their usual "we listened to the customer" statement.
  • I think most people would agree that they'd be happy to get the back tracking and "listening to customer" speech than have them stay the course on this irrational decision.
  • Devs need some sort of stability though. Constant changes in policy make it too unstable to base a business on, unless you bypass MS completely with a payment -system of your own, but who knows when they'll change that too.
  • Change your title. It doesn't match the content of the "article". It is clear that the 20% is a bonus that expires end of this year.
  • The article got the year wrong:
    "The twenty-percent (20%) store fee will be in effect until december 31, 2014". You mean 2015, right? :) Well, it is not that big of an issue I think. It only means Microsoft go the same route as their competitors. The impact on this probably affects corporations mostly, like EA and Gamesoft. How many indie devs earn more than $25k in app sales on average on Windows phone apps? It would be great if there are tons of them out there, I wish them all the best of luck, but I'm not so sure they come in droves :)
  • Everyone forgets the universal Store we will see with Windows 10!
    Users will be able to buy an app once for 4 platforms (phone, tablet, desktop, TV). Apple or Google have different stores.
    MS will get less payments with their unified Store so they had to change it a bit.
  • 25K is a lot of money, and extremely rarely an independent developer earns that much. This is only affecting some big players that don't care about 10% anyway.
  • True this, never thought of it that way too. And usually Indy devs have an ad system or pay to unlock anyways. I like that model so I can test what I like and give my money when I want.
  • Well said - though it also unfairly penalises the lucky Indy or small/medium sized dev that falls on the wrong side of the line - like the chap that makes the wcentral app. That's why it's paid for. I believe he had another job? Hope so as that bonus reduction will sting. After traces and expenses what do you have left to use on on yourself and your own personal builds, credit card, mortgage, healthcare, childcare, leases and loans... Food... Those are the sorts this affects. The larger companies can throw their app out free and monetize in other ways. They could care less.
  • I wonder why this route.... I think they should do a tiered system for sure to keep incentives for developers to support their apps instead of monetizing it. "if the application does not receive regular maintenance when appropriate the percentage will change from 20% to a maximum of 30% based on quality and performance)
  • This would be really helpful for the community!!
  • Too early. Developers still doesn't care about windows and windows phone. Give them less money will not help to change this.
    Microsoft made a great thing deleting cost per year and leaving just the beginning fee of just 19$ but this is a bad move...
  • Let Microsoft play the game the way they wish but they should know the last chance they have with me is windows 10 for phones, if they dare fuck up I wont wait for GR1 at all, lollipop is enough already.
  • Ohhhhh I am really sorry for that COUPLE of apps...
  • MSFT really are nuts. Independent devs and smaller companies are going to feel the pinch. Whatever they earn from this mediocre store then gets disposed via expenses, taxes etc. What is one left with. What is the incentive to develop in the first place, especially given the higher expectant roi on other platforms. It's people like Rudy H you want on board; talented indys and smaller devs with an against-all-odds passion for this os, going against economic sense, and propping up the platform with the big names that are simply missing, or providing better featured apps to the stupid betas that pass for apps round these parts. This makes it harder to work on an app for near a year or more at own cost. To get back less overall. Makes no sense. It's good to hear actual devs voicing their opinion on this thread - but really, I'm surprised at some of the comments. Not much sympathy for the little man, is there? Blind leading the blind.
  • Don't use fancy acronyms like ROI, people don't get it.
  • It will not be a drama
  • Had said that, what's a good Android replacement for a Lumia 920? Because MSFT just killed those last devs had love foe the platform. Another big shot in the foot. If they want devs they should have done the opposite.
  • Just when MSFT seem to be winning the game with open source .net etc they go and spoit it all....
  • Somewhat misleading title, but they better be coming up with a new incentive...
  • Instead of cutting the % we (developers) get, how about advertising the fact that a developer has earnt $25,000? I'm not sure it'll stop developers from making apps, but it'll probably slow down the amount of apps that have a price on them and push developers onto advertising.
  • what a shame, insted of creating 2 major events a year for developers to keep them coming and developing they cut the fee , why ? how will it assit the ecosystem ? i must know
  • Yeah.... Apple has 100$ Yearly fee Google has 25$ one time fee and Microsoft had 10$ yearly fee which they change to one time fee. But still Indie developers have the best chance to develope apps in Google or Microsoft store.
  • RIP WP
  • I understand the idea behind the incentive. However, if I'm a dev that has an app bringing in $25,000 or more annually, I doubt I will abandon the platform, because of a %10 increase in fees. I'm still making 70%. What developers need to do at this point is make sure their apps are universal. If their apps are good enough to bring in that kind of revenue, then people will want those apps on their phone, tablets, and desktop PCs. Also considering, devs with an app that brings in $25k annually, will likely have other apps in the store, too. Devs new the ecosystem will still have the incentive. From a business aspect, I don't see the issue and I doubt this will create a bigger gap. This will perhaps encourage devs to make their apps better, if they are bringing in that kind of money. If it were me, I would want more people to download my app. So, making it better will help.
  • Corporate greed at its best.. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Are they trying to fail?
  • Idk, seems their born with the ability to fail...
  • I don't see why lots of you are freaking out! Correct me if I'm wrong, but this is for app sales. The app gap consists on a lot of FREE apps, so this is not going to change the fact that we don't have Snapchat, YouTube, Gmail or other stupid trendy and free app/service. We know from the third-party apps that is posible to develop the same level of functionality of most of the missing ones, and the API thing for developers got better with every OS iteration. Microsoft had this advantage of the cut price when the other two didn't. Yet we don't have some mayor apps. If we had this and it didn't clearly help, then the loss is not going to have a big impact. US$ 25.000 x 30% = US$ 7.500 US$ 25.000 x 20% = US$ 5.000 The difference is just US$ 2.500! And if you have a really successful and popular app you are going to keep selling and still earning. The thing is selling more and more because quantity will compensate the "loss". Microsoft is working hard to take the universal apps to the next level which is going to unify the Windows, Windows Phone and Xbox One experience and increase the potential market share enormoulsy, giving Visual Studio for free and even assist you to make the best thing you can, and even giving Windows for free to certain type of devices. There is a lot of potential in here, and if you don't know the business basics then you're the stupid and greedy one, not Microsoft. Developers and companies are not developing for Windows 8/8.1 and/or Windows Phone because of other reasons, with the market share excuse, ignorance and prejudice as a common base (they fail to see the big potential that universal apps bring to the table when it comes to the market share). We are not Google or Apple, so we're not "cool" and the stupid tech media is guilty for this. We should move our asses and start pressuring these companies to develop for us instead of just whining here and blame Microsoft for everything. *throws microphone, walks away*
  • So I take it you would be happy if your employer implemented a 10% pay cut ?
  • To answer your question: No, I wouldn't. But you have to be silly to compare both situations.
    If you own a developer company, then you should be intelligent enough to foresee your costs (developers' time, salaries, and blah blah blah), the fees involved and this 70-30 split, so you can make what you need (or want) in the end. This is business basic. If you don't do this or don't know how to do it, you can't blame anyone but you for being incompetent.
    If you are an independent developer, then you have to understand all of the above, that you are working on your own and that Microsoft is giving you a place to show, sell, distribute, and update your app. They put the conditions (which are now on the same level of the App Store and Google Play, but with all the potential that I detailed above), and as far as they are fair and on pair with competition, then is up to you to take it or leave it.
    You are whining about not having a benefit that neither both competitors have. Yet you develop for Android, a platform with piracy problems and with lots of people whining about apps not being free (I have seen this by myself); or iOS, a platform with probably the same or even worse conditions than Microsoft platform (the only key differentiation is market share).
  • Not silly and we are not just talking about developer companies. Microsoft make enough money as things stand. Inceasing this charge is not necessary and smacks of big corporate arrogance - which it is. This will hurt the small independant developer.
  • Yes, it is silly. Why? Because I can't compare what I do and what I sell to an app. Different markets, different realities ;)
    You don't know if it is necessary or not because you don't know how much cost the Store and related services are generating. And you can't call Microsoft "arrogant" when they give single independent developers Visual Studio for free? (And even the next OS iteration probably)
  • Here's the deal (from someone who owns a tiny software company). My Win32 reseller charges a 6% fee for selling my Win32 programs. If I want to net as much with a WinRT/Universal version, which has a 30% fee, I would have to price the WinRT version around 35% higher than the Win32 version. That's not going to work ... even if there was demand for a WinRT version (which there isn't). Note that my three Win32 programs are big, scientific-type programs, not craplets. If all I was doing was creating dozens of similar little apps (craplets like flashlights, compasses, how many days until {insert holiday}, etc.), the hike from 20 to 30% wouldn't matter to me because each one wouldn't make enough money to hit the $25K threshold. That's the kind of craplet market MSFT is encouraging with their fee structure change.  
  • I love the phraseology... craplets, insert holiday here. Pretty funny.
  • How can you compare those high level Win32 apps to something like Facebook, Youtube or any other WinRT app? Everyone's going crazy because they don't have the same apps or games from iOS or Android (Candy Crush, Snapchat, or whatever you can add). We're not talking about Win32 apps (that do not need a Store), we're talking about more simple apps, focused primarily on the consumer side and not the work/enterprise side. Those apps are intended to reach a bigger audience and to be sold for a few dollars, so the profit is in quantity. The more, the merrier Plus, the "fee structure change" that you're talking about has changed for those who already sold more than US$ 25.000, and if you sold that amount then you probably have a hit app that will continue to sell well and will continue to generate revenue. Theorically, they are going to make the same amount on iOS or Android after that (or, more because WP users spend more money than Android ones: Stop acting like it's the end of the world as we know it ;)
  • Theoretically*
  • If WinRT is for "more simple apps" then why is MSFT adding all sorts of Enterprise features to the Windows Store for Win10? I've seen reports that they're even planning on selling Win32 programs through it.  
  • Mike, the op is a moron. A deluded, crack pipe toting, PCP smoking, mescaline pumping moron.
  • Great, just what windows needs. That's really encouraging and definitely going to attract more developers to the platform. Great job Microsoft
  • Pigs at the trough. Still, maybe microsoft can use some of this extra dosh to pay its taxes instead of avoiding them ....... only maybe that is.
  • What about inapp purchases?
  • Appkiller..........
  • MS is the only company that lets you use their payment platform OR use your own for in app purchases... 70/30 split if you use theirs or take home 100% with your own payment implementation... Apple and Android force all sales to go through their payment platform with a 70/30 split so MS still has the best option here, you have freedom as a dev to choose how you want to do payments with MS, no such freedom with the other platforms...
  • They're really confident in what's coming. I'm feeling good about Windows 10 but they must be seeing something I can't quite see. Or... maybe I can see it. **gets in TARDIS** ***whoooshhshshhhhhwoooshhhhhh***
  • Nice one Microsoft, kill off your app market completely. If anything you need to be lowering your fees.
  • I cant fault them for trying to make money, but the single greatest challenge MS faces with their consumer products is developer support. Why would you do anything to undermine that?
  • A large majority of apps that are downloaded are free apps that are supported by advertising so this change wouldn't affect them. You also have to look at the psychological perspective of things and notice that the end of this promotion was in the original agreement so if Microsoft decided to extend it then people may perceive that Microsoft is being desperate. I would guess that Microsoft has some statistical data they are referencing to back their decision. The majority of business decisions are not as simple as they appear from the surface.
  • How that compares to Google or Apple?
  • If you make that kind of money I don't think you should complain
  • Eat my ass, socialist.
  • So far my app revenue is a whopping $zero. If I ever hit $25K a 30% cut will be the least of my worries.
  • I understand why they had put that incentive, (the more money you make, the more you take home - that must have been the theory). How ever I doubt many hit that 25k target to get the 10% fee reduction. As such it would have been more attractive to have it in reverse. It should be a 20% fixed fee from 2015 not 30%..
  • On one hand isn't this what apple already does? On the other hand making it fully 20/80 instead of 30/70 followed by 20/80 like it is now seems like it could attract more developers.
  • I support the move... just not right now. Wait until Jan 2016... a good 9 months after Windows 10 has been released and had time to gain traction. Jan 2015. It's too early.It's too soon.
  • Sometimes I wonder if the people at the top have any brains whatsoever. This fledgling platform doesn't need disgruntled developers. How is the platform going to thrive and attract other developers? I am moving on to Apple and IOS it's becoming clearer to me that Microsoft doesn't want stay competitive in the cellphone arena and I honestly think they will soon abandon it
  • With that amount of typos, I'd really like to see your code.. But I agree, a few per cent market share is a bit of an underdog, they oughta keep the devs happy for now.
  • Damn this WC app doesn't have copy paste :D Wow.
    Anyhoot, it is nice they call "agreement" something they never negotiated with anybody. As in "I agree everybody blows me now!"
  • You want developers, you need developers. In order to be the best.... You need to have the best on your side........and you need to pay them.
    Changing the percentage will change the way developers develops apps.(If they even continue to make apps for the platform.
  • How exactly is this supposed to lure more app developers to WM?