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#1 goofy166

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Posted 03 August 2012 - 06:00 PM

I have set up this forum as a place to share your thoughts and ideas about the newest member of our product line - iBird Journal. Now in case you are wondering where this product is, at this time (Aug 3, 2012) it has not yet launched in the Apple app store. But its very close so we thought why not make the forum available. In a few days we will post some videos that introduce Journal. Meantime feel free to ask any questions you have. It's meant for both new users and beta testers to help other users and testers, so please dont be shy.

Mitch
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#2 jbhiggs@gmail.com

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 10:32 AM

Hi Mitch,

Looking forward to seeing the implementation of the iBird journal. Any possibility of including the journal feature within the native app (like the Audubon apps)?

Cheers,
James

#3 goofy166

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 06:25 PM

James we are debating the value of adding Journal features to our iBird apps. We have some doubts about the number of people that actually will use these features.
Mitchell Waite
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#4 Wren

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 04:13 AM

I think it would really make since to be within the iBird app. The search feature is so powerful in ibird, people will be using it to find what bird they saw. It would be great to be able to add it directly to the journal from the bird page. Even if it is just a button in ibird that launches journal and starts the add bird feature with the current bird. That may be the easiest solution.

I would hate to have to look up a bird in one place, then have to remember it, launch journal, then find the bird there to enter it.

Just my thoughts.

Thanks for the great app. I could not imagine trying to learn to I'd birds without this!

#5 jbhiggs@gmail.com

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 09:55 PM

Yes, I suppose it is more convenient for the likes of those of us that would though Mitch ;). You could always charge a fee (hopefully not too much) for use of such a feature built into the app.

#6 Wren

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 12:46 PM

I also agree with the additional fee for the "add-in." It costs money to develop a good app and we all appreciate what you have developed so far!

#7 goofy166

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:14 PM

Wren:

The Journal works like you want it to: a Journal button which you can see now in iBird Pro on any species page (at the far end) will open Journal from iBird with the observation form for that species ready to be filled out. When you are done a Save and Return takes you right back to the species page for that bird in iBird. You can also open iBird from Journal.

Journal will be a paid app but we are still thinking about price. Most of the good iPhone Checklist apps are around $9.99.
Mitchell Waite
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#8 jbhiggs@gmail.com

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 08:00 PM

Being a causal birder, the proposed price for the iBird journal is simply too high as it stands Mitch. This price may target the avid birders and/or researchers but people like me might find it hard to justify $10 (as useful as it might be). Out of curiosity what other Checklist apps are you referring to.

Just my two-cents.
James

#9 jettagozoom

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 06:59 PM

Being a causal birder, the proposed price for the iBird journal is simply too high as it stands Mitch. This price may target the avid birders and/or researchers but people like me might find it hard to justify $10 (as useful as it might be). Out of curiosity what other Checklist apps are you referring to.

Just my two-cents.
James


Mitch, I feel that there are many so called life list apps out there, and none of them do a great job. I've been waiting a long time for your try at it, and if looking at what you have created in the past is a good indicator of what the iJournal app will look like, I'd happily pay $20 for it.

I'm a software engineer myself and understand the effort need to make a good quality app You deserve to earn rewards for your efforts. The fella above doesn't get it. If he doesn't want to pay for what things are worth, there are other life lists out there that are probably worth what he is willing to pay.

Make the iJournal app, and they will come.

John

#10 2busy4me

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 05:45 PM

I would welcome this app as I have had to continue to update favorites so I can keep track of what birds I see where and when. Trying to send my notes to myself and then organize them while a dream and a plan never happened.

I enjoy birding, but am a busy professional with little free time. There are times of the year when I can carve out some serious birding time, but most of the time it is as it fits in. I do like to see what I have seen each year and where. I keep multiple "lists" yard, county, states, year and life. Having one place would be ideal.

I have been hoping that you would come up with a way to journal them. in one place, this sounds great. While I would prefer it to be less than $10, I would pay it.

#11 Bigfoot

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 05:49 PM

I would welcome this app as I have had to continue to update favorites so I can keep track of what birds I see where and when. Trying to send my notes to myself and then organize them while a dream and a plan never happened.

I enjoy birding, but am a busy professional with little free time. There are times of the year when I can carve out some serious birding time, but most of the time it is as it fits in. I do like to see what I have seen each year and where. I keep multiple "lists" yard, county, states, year and life. Having one place would be ideal.

I have been hoping that you would come up with a way to journal them. in one place, this sounds great. While I would prefer it to be less than $10, I would pay it.


Thank you for your comments, I will forward to Admin.

Bigfoot
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#12 goofy166

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 07:23 PM

Gentlemen

Thank you for your supportive comments about iBird journal. Birders make up a wide variety of personalities and it seems each has their own set of values about what a certain kind of book should be like, or what a software product should cost.

In the long run it really comes down to a cost benefit equation for us. We do not have a great deal of flexibility as far as pricing is concerned. It's clear that the lower the price the higher the number of people will buy the product. However the price times volume is what's important to us and it turns out that number is not as simple to figure out as you would think.

What we do is start out with a certain price and see how the product sells and what our gross income is. Sometimes we will put the app on sale and see if the gross goes up or down. It's a constantly changing process.

I really like hearing from birders who say the bottom line is if the product is good they will pay up to $20 for it. Those are the people that we built journal for. For those who find it too expensive at $10 bill theyll just have to find another way to keep track of their birds.
Mitchell Waite
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Sausalito CA 94941

#13 Wren

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 05:26 AM

It amazes me what people are willing to pay for books, field guides, optics, etc, but "Apps" are "too expensive" at $10. Regular desktop software was never this cheap AND you had to pay to update it. With Apps, you buy it ONCE and get free updates to that software. That makes it really difficult for developers to make money providing really good software. Its really hard for them to continue to update it and make it better when there are no upgrade sales, like microsoft counts on. A really good app is something I realize I plan to have and will use for a long time. I will definitely pay the $10 for something that is good, really meets the needs and wants of birders and is supported as well as iBird products. Mr. Waite has continued to listen to users and upgrade the products. I believe the same will be true of the iBird journal and am looking forward to it.

#14 goofy166

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 07:29 PM

It amazes me what people are willing to pay for books, field guides, optics, etc, but "Apps" are "too expensive" at $10. Regular desktop software was never this cheap AND you had to pay to update it. With Apps, you buy it ONCE and get free updates to that software. That makes it really difficult for developers to make money providing really good software. Its really hard for them to continue to update it and make it better when there are no upgrade sales, like Microsoft counts on. A really good app is something I realize I plan to have and will use for a long time. I will definitely pay the $10 for something that is good, really meets the needs and wants of birders and is supported as well as iBird products. Mr. Waite has continued to listen to users and upgrade the products. I believe the same will be true of the iBird journal and am looking forward to it.


Wren your post really hit the nail squarely on the head and I really appreciate what you said. You so right that the new app stores have shifted the software industry on its head and made it much more beneficial to the consumer. I believe that pendulum has swung way too much in the consumer direction as the expense of developers. It's not unusual for large changes to work like that, I've seen it over and over. Now we need the swing to move back towards the developer/publisher so we CAN charge for updates and we CAN leave responses to one sided reviews. One way that publishers are getting things swinging towards them again is to use inapp purchases. You give away the basic app but its crippled such that you must spend more to get the missing elements. Its a dangerous approach because you can get nickel-ed and dimed to death adding small things like more armor, or more seeds but over all it gives a lot of advantages to the publisher.

I'm very curious if you, or any of the others who are posting on this forum, have tried any of the apps on my Compare Checklist Apps? I think its mandatory that before you l eave a long opinion you should know the landscape of these products.
Mitchell Waite
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Sausalito CA 94941

#15 Ilovebirds!!

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 10:36 PM

I'm sooo ready to pay!!.. Where's the ibird journal app already!! Lol :)

#16 Wren

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Posted 17 September 2012 - 12:52 AM

I have tried and currently have one of the apps. Its not expensive and does most of what I want, simply because all I want is an easy way to keep track of what I have seen. I have not tried keeping separate lists yet. (Just getting started with birding...) I did want the ability to upload to ebird, but found I really didn't use that since I was not IDing many of the birds I saw and didn't think it would help the project. I have looked into a couple of the others. I think being able to keep a real simple list of birds seen without having to record all the other information, but also having the ability to record all the details if you want (up to ebird posting requirements and additional information like notes) would make it the most flexible and reach the needs of the greatest number of users.

I love the free updates, so don't get me wrong there. But, I do understand the need for users and developers to have a more clear understanding and expectation between "updates" (i.e. fixes, make compatible with iOS updates, etc.) and "upgrades" (significant additional features and/or capabilities.) With the new "in app" purchases, I believe developers can offer the new upgrades to new products with significant additional features through "in app" and allow an upgrade path at a lower cost than a new purchaser. That way "loyal" users can continue to upgrade without paying the much high new purchase price.

Also, I agree developers should be able to reply to user posts. Many posts I have read were just wrong and the user obviously did not know how to use the program.

#17 Loon

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 05:03 AM

Being a causal birder, the proposed price for the iBird journal is simply too high as it stands Mitch. This price may target the avid birders and/or researchers but people like me might find it hard to justify $10 (as useful as it might be). Out of curiosity what other Checklist apps are you referring to.

Just my two-cents.
James



#18 Loon

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 05:32 AM

Apple did a great thing by starting App prices at an unheard of low level. It was an incredible risk, but it obviously has paid off for them -- and for us. What the average consumer doesn't realize is that Apple was tackling the Compact Disc conundrum of the late 80's and early nineties. And they solved it to the best level that was possible.

Namely, when CD's first came out, they were expensive. And some of you probably remember that buying a disc was often a gamble. You would hear a tune on the radio, run down to Music Plus or Tower Records, and plunk down fifteen to twenty dollars for the whole album of songs (this was after the vinyl single era, obviously, and before CD singles. So you were stuck with the whole album). Often you would end up with one, maybe two worthwhile songs, and the rest was trash. And you were stuck. In those early days, you could not return opened CD packages... Remember that? Money wasted. Then, along came listening booths at Virgin Records with the ability to open any CD for preview at a huge loss to the retailer, then along came Napster and others, then prices started to fall -- and ultimately the industry was irreparably harmed, Virgin Records and others went out of business and the rest is history (we all know other factors were involved, too, I am over generalizing). But Apple saw this and had to find a price point entry that wouldn't implode the model before they even got established.

So, bottom line of this long diatribe is that Apple made it possible for you to buy something that might turn out to be crappy. But you only spent .99... Less than a donut at Winchell's. So who cares? And the system pretty much works for most of the app buying population

The downside is, we've traded the potential for mediocrity with an agreement for small stakes gambling. And now we have been conditioned in just a couple of short years to always expect .99 cent store mentality -- regardless of the product.

What we have to recondition ourselves with is the distant and hazy remembrance that ten bucks for a piece of software is nothing! It is cheaper than a vinyl LP in the old days, let alone a CD of crappy music that you listen to once. Ten bucks for a fully functioning and ultimately USEFUL tool is a heckuva deal! What would you spend on a useful tool such as, say, a stapler or a desktop tape dispenser? Ten bucks, easy. But you aren't going to complain about that. Because you are already conditioned in that mindset.

The two apps that I use the most cost well over ten dollars (one was over fifty). A gamble? Absolutely. Ten bucks? Chicken feed.

Sorry for the long winded response, folks. But get real.

I am ready for the Journal!

#19 yep

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 01:49 AM

You're absolutely right that $10 isn't much for a useful tool. But the question here is whether or not people will consider this app (or any other hypothetical app) a useful enough tool to pay $10 for it.

When you buy a hammer, you pretty much know what it does and how it's going to work, you can hold it and see if it's a quality hammer and then you can decide if it's worth the price the store is charging. When you buy an app, you don't get a chance to check it out, examine it, etc., you have to buy it sight unseen and some people really hate the idea of spending money on something they ultimately won't like or don't find useful.

The real issue is, as Mitch said earlier, finding that price-times-volume sweetspot. If you take a sample size of a hundred people and price your app at $10, you might find that only five of them are willing to pay that price. Well, you've made yourself a nice fifty bucks. If you price it at $.99, you might find that sixty people are willing to take a chance at that price and now you've made yourself sixty bucks. I believe that is the strategy behind the $.99 app.

All I'm saying is, don't be so hard on the people who say $10 sounds like too much for them. It's not meant as an insult to developers, they're simply expressing what they feel they're willing to gamble on a product they might not feel is right for them.
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#20 Wren

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 04:16 AM

Any update from iBird Admin on status of the launch of the product?

It was probably smart to wait till after iOS6/iPhone 5 launch to put something out in order to make sure it is compatible.




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