Lite version: Ads or limitations?

The free, lite version of Mizuu (Movies) for tablets has been downloaded roughly 4,000 times by now and about 40 percent of the downloads are still active, i.e. the application is still installed on the user’s tablet and is being used.

40 percent doesn’t sound like a lot, but from what I’ve heard, it’s actually pretty standard when dealing with “lite” or limited versions of application. The paid version has around 90 percent active users, which is a number I’m very proud of, and I’d of course love to change the number on the lite version for the better.

I’ve been thinking about what the reasons for the low percentage may be:

  • The application is limited to only five movies
  • The application is not being updated nearly as often as the paid version (right now there’s a huge difference between the two versions)
  • People don’t like it and uninstall it (we don’t like this reason…)
  • People like it, uninstalled and purchased the full version (we like this reason!)

The main issue with creating a limited version of another application is that there’s a lot of code that has to be updated and managed on two projects. The lite version also includes some limitations that need to be taken care of. This takes a lot of time (more than you’d think), and is pretty annoying to do.

I’ve been thinking about a solution to the problem and I think I’ve found one that solves the majority of the problems: Ads.

By implementing ads in the lite version, I’ll be able to remove the limitations of the lite version, which should include fewer code changes. This will also enable me to push updates a lot quicker and hopefully repair or improve the reputation of the free version.

I’ve also been thinking about where to put the ads, and I think the movie library overview is the best place to do it. This way it won’t annoy anyone when viewing movie details, and it’ll be shown everytime you’re browsing your library.

In all honesty, I’m not a huge fan of adverts and I really didn’t want to add it to the application. The development of the application however does take up quite a bit of my personal time and I really think it may be the best way to solve the problems of limitations and slower updates.

I’m really interested in knowing what you think about my problem. If you’ve got any thoughts on it, please feel free to add a comment below 🙂

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