Cha-ching! The folks over at Big Fish Games have convinced Apple to allow them to use the magazine and newspaper in-app subscription model to sell games.
So, how does this work? Well, for $6.99 USD per month ($4.99 USD for a limited time), users can stream games over Wi-Fi inside of their “Play Instantly!” app. Bloomberg has compared it to Netflix’s model, but I’m unsure exactly how apt of a comparison that is at this point. Something in my gut is telling me this is more similar to Facebook than Netflix despite the subscription model. This just reeks to me of Zynga-style micro payments done in bigger chunks. That rings even more true when you consider that they will have a free ad-supported version that is time limited.
I’m interested to see the implications that this might have in other aspects. If more genres of applications start using this model of monetization, we might soon be racking up the subscription fees just to use our favorite apps. Instead of buying a VNC client for $9.99 USD up front, we might end up with VNC clients that cost $0.99 USD recurring every month.
Streaming games might be a legitimate use for subscriptions, but I do wonder just how much nickel-and-diming consumers will put up with. What do you think? Sound off on Twitter by including @macgasm in your tweet. We want to know what you think about subscription-based apps.