Standard Plan Pricing Confusion

Timothy Bleiler bleiler at
Tue Sep 7 16:48:47 EDT 2021

The pricing for the standard plan looks confusing and inconsistent when first encountered. It’s also further complicated by the "add on" options.

There are 2 add ons:
email support
Pro Package (Device Debugging, code optimization tool, the network layer (tsNet library), iOS accessory access, pdf library). The info box on this still references the Community and Indy licenses which supposedly don’t exist.

Hopefully I have this figured out right. If I’m wrong it could reflect poorly on me or the plans ;-) 
Here’s the rounded-off pricing if you just buy deployment options. After the first platform you can substitute 1 of the 2 add on options for platform in each of these tiers. 

1 platform = $300
2 platforms = $500 ($200 more)
3 platforms = $900 ($400 more)
4 platforms = $1000 ($100 more)
5 platforms = $1500 ($500 more)
6 platforms = $1800 ($300 more)
All 7 platforms = $2000 ($200 more)

Here’s the rounded off per platform/options pricing for each tier. 
This looks like it makes slightly more sense than when it’s listed the other way.
1 platform = $300
2 platforms = $250
3 platforms = $300
4 platforms = $250
5 platforms = $300
6 platforms = $300
All 7 platforms + the 2 add ons = $222

This issue was brought up previously by Sean Cole. Jacqueline Landman Gay suggested that it might be tied to the popularity of specific platforms.   Here’s how she explained it. "The way I figure it, each platform is $300. But since many of us build for the two major ones (Mac and Windows) you get a $100 discount for that bundle. After that it's $300 each except for 
4 and 7 platforms, where there's also a discount.” Yes, apparently, but why?  The popular desktops/ mobile bundle? Why then are the add ons priced the same?  Is there really equivalent value there? Number 7 is obviously discounted for a buy everything tier. That’s OK, I guess.

The problem with Jacqueline’s explanation is that it doesn’t matter which platforms or add ons you select, the same pricing pattern persists.  I can justify different prices for different platform deployments and different options, but this inconsistent pattern could be hard to explain to prospective users and business accountants to whom we have to justify purchases. Jacqueline may be right about the reasons but these are “hidden” bundle options based on an assumption of what the user is likely to want. It also can make some combinations that are probably much harder to justify/explain than others. 

While I can come up with some other explanations for this and a case could be made that it has a lot of flexibility, I wonder if a more transparent pricing/bundling/discount structure might be better.

Any chance we can get some clarification on the rationale behind the pricing to help us with our purchasing requests? 

Tim Bleiler, Ph.D.
Instructional Designer, HSIT
University at Buffalo

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