What is it about in-app purchases that makes people bristle? Perhaps, when an app is advertised as “free” people don’t generally expect to pay for major features. But in fact, this is a widespread practice in the industry that has now been rectified by at least one company.
FiftyThree’s Paper, a popular sketching app, has always opened its free app to the bare minimum of its pen and eraser tools. For anything more, you had to plunk down at least $0.99 per tool or $3.99 for an Essentials pack. No longer.
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Beginning today, the company has made all of Paper’s original tools available for free. This includes Draw, Sketch, Outline, Write, and Color — all now available to everyone as soon as they download Paper.
FiftyThree’s release of free tools coincides with the shipping of Pencil Gold, the latest addition to FiftyThree’s line of digital stylus pens. You can now purchase Pencil online or at Apple stores worldwide. Indeed, according to the company, Pencil has been such a success that it is considered the main source of revenue for the company, allowing it to dispense with in-app purchases for Paper.
Recently, FiftyThree also launched Mix – a free collaborative platform for Paper that lets users work together on creative projects from drawing to brainstorming to storytelling.