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Rakkup iPhone App-Thoughts?


Rob Price · · Seattle, WA · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 0

We have more ideas for innovating on different pricing models, and want to know more about what you think and how you'd feel about some of 'em. The issues are complicated because of the many parties involved.
But as guests on the MP forum, we also need to be respectful of what this space is for. Mountain Project is an amazing community and we don't want to wear out our welcome. I've created a blog post which is open for comments. (Because we've had the usual issues in the past with spammers, you have to register with our site to comment. SuperTopo also has a rakkup thread.)
We're happy to keep answering questions here and you're welcome to post anything you like of course, but if you want to "dive deeper" with us on a topic that's the place to do it.
Thanks for understanding! -RP

Anfarwal Vr · · Denver, CO · Joined Mar 2012 · Points: 226

Thanks for answering our questions Rob. I don't have much to add except I agree 100% with Neyma regarding eliminating the 'poof' and paying for updates. While we're at it, can we have the choice of a sexy guy voice to tell us when we hit the bottom of the climb? Like Benedict Cumberbatch's voice? Thanks

Tzilla Rapdrilla · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 845

One of the things I like about the Rakkup version of climbing guides is the ability to add more content than is viable with a print book where you are limited space-wise by how many pictures you can utlize. For areas that are still in the developmental phase it makes it much easier to keep an up to date guidebook out there instead of the 5 years that it takes to sell off a pallet of printed books. The guys at Rakkup are constantly adding new features to the apps, and I suspect the digital guides will evolve rapidly.

Rob Price · · Seattle, WA · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 0

Anfarwal I love the suggestion. Anyone who has that professional sounding voice, feel free to send us your voice clip of "You have arrived. Rakkup!" and we'll consider it for inclusion ;) (Last year, Ammon McNealy offered to do it in his signature pirate voice for us. I still think we should take him up in that!)

jonathan.lipkin · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 70

Rob, thanks for responding to questions so thoroughly on thoughtfully online. I was very excited to see the guide come out as an app - I've been wondering why nobody has done so in the past.

I'm also glad to hear that you are concerned with making sure that authors get paid. I've written a few books, and am sympathetic to compensating people for their creative work. However, I think you may have a hard time convincing people to pay for a three year subscription to a book, and this might end up limiting your audience. These days people are simply used to getting information for nothing. As I think Jaron Lanier once put it, given a choice between quality and free, people will always choose free.

I do think the suggestion for paying a set price for a book, then charging for updates, may prove to be more appetizing to the general public. I know I would be more comfortable with that model myself. I suspect people are uncomfortable with having content removed (even if it simply expires)> Look at the flak Amazon got for removing books from people's Kindles in 2009:

arstechnica.com/gadgets/200…

Just some friendly advice. I hope you are successful with the guides. As I said, it's a great idea.

DrApnea · · Wenatchee, WA · Joined May 2011 · Points: 250

Agreed.
I would buy rakkup if it was a reasonably priced one time purchase. Not going to for an annual subscription though. I will just buy a guide book instead or use the abundance of free resources online (MP, supertopo, summitpost, cascadeclimbers, etc). I did download the demo and play with it though, and it seems pretty well done. Good job and good luck.

Ron Birk · · Boston, MA · Joined Sep 2009 · Points: 3,392

I just found out about the rakkup guides and was all eager to buy a digital version until I saw the expiration after 3 years. I would never buy something that's only valid for a short time. I understand (and support) paid subscriptions for updates, but not for the edition you bought. Imagine your printed copy would evaporate after 3years.. I would not be happy.

Rob Price · · Seattle, WA · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 0

Since there was a lot of interest in this thread in an Android version of rakkup, I just wanted to say that we've released it today in the Google Play Store. It took longer than we'd hoped but we're proud of the result. We hope you like it.
We've also heard your thoughtful feedback about the pricing and subscription terms. We've discussed it with our publishing partners and have some exciting stuff in the works that we think will make existing and future customers alike very satisfied. I'll drop a brief note here when we have specifics to share, but there's more information on the rakkup website and you're always welcome to contact me directly.
Thanks to the community and happy climbing!
-Rob

Rob Price · · Seattle, WA · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 0

I wanted to share some news that comes directly from this thread: effective immediately, all of our three-year subscriptions have been changed to "forever" products that you own and keep. We were able to get approval from all our content partners to respond to the customer feedback and we hope it brings you more of what you want.
This includes retroactively extending all previous purchases, too. New purchases will include one year of free guidebook updates, but previous purchases bought as "three year" subscriptions have been grandfathered to get the full three years of updates as well. After one year, updates will be available at a reasonable cost which will naturally depend on how much and how often each guide is updated.
My sincere thanks to the people here who took the time to share their opinions and help make this happen. We believe the combination of Mountain Project and professionally-edited guides on your phone is a great situation and we're proud to be part of that effort. Happy climbing! Please feel free to email me or post at rakkup.com if you have questions.
-Rob

jonathan.lipkin · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 70

That's great news. I may pick up a copy for my next trip down to the Red.

Ron Birk · · Boston, MA · Joined Sep 2009 · Points: 3,392

Thank Rob. I think this makes more sense! Now I would consider some of the guides.

Have you thought of a way to get a demo or sneak peak of a guide? You have a very small sample for one place but say I would like to get another location, I don't really know what to expect. Even just screen shots of a few climbs would help a lot to know what you are buying.

Ron Birk · · Boston, MA · Joined Sep 2009 · Points: 3,392

Version 9 is a nice update addressing most of my comments. Thanks!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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