clear ios 7

Realmac Software has decided to reverse course, and reinstate its original ‘Clear’ todo list app to sell alongside its all-new universal app it released for iOS 7. It originally planned to discontinue the iPhone-only app.

But that plan has obviously changed over the last week or so, following user backlash. Original Clear purchasers were upset they’d have to pay again for the app, despite the fact that they didn’t need an iPad version…

From Realmac Software’s blog (via MacRumors):

“After having chatted amongst the team at great length, and given the (shall we say) emotional response from the folks who use Clear for iPhone, we’re changing plan slightly. 

We’re bringing back the stand-alone iPhone version of Clear, and we’ll be updating it for existing users with new iPhone features. 

To that end, we’ve submitted an update that includes the iPhone enhancements for iOS 7 (including the new list themes) and will be releasing it as soon as Apple approves it. 

To make it easy to differentiate, we’re now calling Clear for iOS 7 “Clear+” to signify that it’s for all your iOS devices.”

Initial responses to the move from user and developer communities have been, as you would imagine, starkly different. While users think it’s a great move in customer satisfaction, developers, however, are saying it’s a ‘shame.’

It’s hard to really say who’s right and who’s wrong here. While I am one of the original Clear users who was disappointed to have to repay for the iOS 7 update, I realized I’ve only paid them a few bucks over the course of a year.

I think Stephen Hackett from 512Pixels explains it best:

The bottom line is this: developers should be able to work on their product in a sustainable way. Realmac are some of the good guys, and to have to backtrack on a business decision is a damn shame, especially in a world where people pour money into IAP-based games day and night.”

I think this whole iOS 7 app update controversy is just the beginning of a bigger conversation, and it’ll be interesting to see where it goes. Eventually, Apple will need to intervene if it wants to keep devs happy and in business.

At any rate, you can find the iPhone-only version of Clear here and the iPhone/iPad version here.

Any thoughts on Realmac’s actions?

  • MrShutEmDown

    I mean what they wont do now, they’ll do later. But the fact that clear pretty much looks EXACTLY the same didnt help them save face.

  • Jordan Dixon

    I think it is a shame that we are in an ‘entitled’ society, and people think “I payed you $0.99, and you want another dollar?! I’m not made of money”. People expect to pay a dollar for an app and expect support for eternity for free. I think the real issue here is the way that Realmac did the update as a new app. Perhaps a different approach to paid updates is needed.

    • Nate McKelvie

      I agree completely, I mean people get so pissed that they have to pay for the next version of an app, but when a computer program gets an updated version you almost always have to pay again ( even if it’s just an upgrade pricing ) but when it comes to mobile they feel so entitled

  • chumawumba

    At least someone realizes how stupid they were

  • Mohammed Sahib

    Lets be honest: I got the original clear app for free (Apple’s promo/ Starbucks promo), but after seeing their business practice, I decided against buying their new app. I asked myself: who says that they won’t do it again with iOS 8?. But now I am reconsidering buying the new universal app. They, after all, earned my trust.

  • jgr627

    I don’t mind paying .99 once a year every year but its dift when were talking $19.99 a year every year…..that’s what the devs of screens for iOS are doing and I would appreciate it if somebody on this blog will call them out for there shameful business practices

  • Byron C Mayes

    I don’t use Clear, but if I did, it seems like three bucks isn’t a whole lot for something that one considers truly useful. I certainly wouldn’t pay even 99 cents to upgrade an app that I didn’t find valuable, but if I use it every day it’s clearly giving me some benefit. The developer should be compensated for adding value to my computing/mobile phoning experience.

    And I wonder how many of these “backlashers” got Clear for free — as I did — through the Starbucks promotion?

  • Valinor

    Been thinking for a while now about getting Clear but never actually did.
    After reading this article I decided to show some support and buy the app…….untill I saw the current price for Clear+ 4,49 euro!!! The regular clear app is 0,89 euro….. wtf

  • Extra

    If paid updates is going to be an actual thing for devs then it’s only going to work if Apple intervenes and actually gives devs a viable option/method of implementation within their App Store.

  • Joseph A. Ahmad

    Omnifocus, yea yea! Just saying.

  • Yuliang Wang

    An update should always be recharged again. Just like people would be happy to pay for Win8 and office 2013, and on the other hand they could stay on their Win7 or Office 2007 as they want. So the issue here, in my consideration, is all about Apple. If Apple allowed users downgrading freely, all of these conflicts would be appeased. ^_^

  • Jansen Yong

    A good move to stop fragmentation

  • Alex Kraeutle

    All of the nay sayers…don’t forget that they are running a business and since they don’t put ads in their apps they rely solely on people purchasing them outright. I’m not saying they couldn’t have added a few things to make the 3 dollar upgrade worth, but it certainly has not been worth the backlash. Also, if you can afford a 700 dollar phone, subsidized or not, you can afford to give a developer 3 dollars, and if you can’t, then I guess you’ll have to use pen and paper. Which will probably cost you more than the app anyway!