SoftwareToGo

Wednesday, March 12th, 2003 @ 9:02 pm | Mac

MacMinute has a link to Apple’s newest program for developers, a partnership between Apple, CompUSA, and SoftwareToGo.

The SoftwareToGo Product Preview Station (PPS) stores descriptions and demos of each product it carries. If you want to buy something, the PPS prints a bar-coded ticket that you take to the counter, where a CompUSA uses the Order Fulfillment Station (OFS) to burn a CD, produce customized DVD-style casing, and individualized registration information. Basically, it’s like some mad scientist mixed a product finder application with the large item tags at appliance stores and a service like eSellerate and dropped it in CompUSA.

Apple doesn’t really have any involvement with getting the SoftwareToGo kiosks into CompUSA — that partnership was announced almost two months ago. Apple’s involvement is much cooler: anybody with an ADC Premier or Select membership has the SoftwareToGo set-up fees waived. For each product sold through the SoftwareToGo kiosk, the developer receives a license fee.

I’m trying to find out more about this license fee and any other costs that might be associated with the program. However, this sounds like a great way for small to mid-sized Mac developers to get their product into a location like CompUSA.

Of course, it would be nice if these kiosks started showing up in the Apple Stores, but I’m not sure if the smaller stores and the mall stores have enough room for both the PPS and OFS systems.

Update: I heard back from SoftwareToGo about payouts to developers. It definitely is a different pricing structure than those used by e-commerce services like Kagi and eSellerate.

For products $15 and under, SoftwareToGo gives 20% of the purchase cost back to the developer. For products above $15, SoftwareToGo gives 60% – $6 for materials. Additionally, you can negotiate different licensing fees for products above $60.

In contrast, Kagi takes, at most, 10% of the purchase prices. eSellerate caps their cut at 15%. Both of these rates change based on your total income over time.

I realize SoftwareToGo has a different business model than Kagi and eSellerate and that SoftwareToGo probably has higher costs because they maintain an in-store presence and provide physical media. However, it is relavent because developers need to balance the potential gains of selling product in CompUSA with lower per-sale profit.

One Response to “SoftwareToGo”

  1. Michael Tsai's Weblog Says:

    SoftwareToGo

    Eric Blair: The SoftwareToGo Product Preview Station (PPS) stores descriptions and demos of each product it carries. If you want to buy something, the PPS prints a bar-coded ticket that you take to the counter, where a CompUSA uses the Order Fulfillmen…