Garmin to introduce payments for apps in ConnectIQ in 2024

Garmin to introduce paid-for, 3rd party apps in 2024 to the ConnectIQ Store (CIQ)?

Source: via @JW

THIS INFORMATION WAS PREVIOUSLY SUPPORTER-ONLY

Plans are already in advanced state at Garmin, in a new move to affect users of its Connect ecosystem, probably to the ConnectIQ (CIQ) store in particular.

Garmin will include new payment mechanisms for their Connect platform in 2024, possibly mid-year. This means some Garmin owners will need to pay for certain applications to enhance their Garmin device’s functionality. However, it’s not totally clear if this change will affect third-party apps, Garmin’s ‘device app’ functionality, or if the changes are more banal perhaps to include payments for maps or accessories like straps.

However, my information from the source is specifically that ConnectIQ is getting credit card verification and hence a payment mechanism.

Let’s speculate that the payment mechanism will be for 3rd party CIQ apps, which has a reasonable likelihood of being correct. I’d say LESS likely than it is for Garmin to charge for a new tier of own-brand premium apps.

new Garmin Connect 2024 – Beta Program Details and MORE images

what might transpire:

We might expect to see free apps alongside paid-for apps and perhaps also apps with in-app purchases and subscriptions. ie precisely the same sorts of things that we already see on Apple and Google’s app stores.

I know that some 3rd party developers have been asking for this for quite some time.

Of course, currently, some apps require payment to work but this payment is handled outside of ConnectIQ perhaps, for example, either where you pay for a code that can be added to your CIQ app/data field or where the CIQ app/data field accesses an external service that requires payment. In some cases the existing payments you make cover the costs for the developers who themselves need to get data, like some weather data, from external sources.

Pros and Cons

This change has both pros and cons. On the positive side, paid apps could offer advanced features and a better user experience. It could also incentivize developers to create high-quality apps and ensure ongoing support and updates. Additionally, it may attract more skilled developers to the ConnectIQ platform, resulting in diverse and innovative offerings.

Plus, let’s face it, do we really expect other people to work for free to produce things for us? You’re paid for your work after all, right?

Garmin HRM-FIT – Opinion

On the negative side, users would have to bear the cost of paid apps, which could limit the inclusivity of the Garmin ecosystem. The availability of free apps might also be reduced if developers prioritize paid offerings. The shift from a predominantly free model to a paid one could change the user experience and potentially frustrate loyal Garmin customers. It may also create a fragmented user base and lead to compatibility issues. Furthermore, free apps could face neglect as developers shift their focus to paid offerings, leaving some users with outdated or unsupported applications. Lastly, if Garmin adopts a subscription-based model for paid apps, users might experience subscription fatigue, especially if they already subscribe to other digital services.

Thoughts

I’ve long thought that many CIQ app developers deserve to earn (more) money from their efforts. This might help.

However, I suspect it will simply turn out to be the continuation of the trend we have already seen that allows evermore commercially astute developers to charge for their time and effort. Fair enough. However, Garmin seems to want a slice of the pie and this could be the start of a revenue stream for them as they skim off app listing fees and get commissions on transaction fees.

 

 

 

 

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