Apple’s about to make that happen. Venture Beat just published a copy of an email that explains the whole procedure to developers but it’s pretty simple. The entire transaction happens with a couple of clicks through their iTunes Connect account. The beauty of the deal is that the app details remain the same, only the ownership changes. Leaderboard rankings, reviews, ratings – they all carry over to the new owner.
Previously, you couldn’t buy an app from a developer without taking it down from iTunes and starting over. This is huge.
- Now brands can buy a successful app to rebrand as their own.
- App companies can buy up competitors or apps that compliment ones they’ve created.
- Developers can buy languishing apps that are in need of a update. Little tweaking on the back end, a fresh date in the app store and it’s a money-maker.
Given the huge number of apps in iTunes, the ability to buy and sell could benefit the consumer by reducing the number of fading apps. When I look for a download, I always look at the updated date. If it hasn’t been touched in over a year, I move on. From a tech standpoint, I don’t know if there’s a difference between apps that were created a year ago and apps that came out last week. I simply prefer downloading an app that is still being supported by someone. If the developer gave up on it in 2011, it’s no good to me in 2013.
What’s really nice about this system is that it allows the developer to do what he does best – develop. Then, instead of having to constantly market and maintain his creation, he can sell it and move on to the next brilliant idea. I’m like that with websites. I love to build them, but I’m notoriously bad at keeping them up. Only thing, I haven’t mastered the “sell it” part, yet but I’m working on it.