Direct download as a bargaining chip

In the closing paragraph of “my Mac App Store follow-up post”:http://www.manton.org/2011/06/mac_app_store_followup.html, I suggested that eventually most developers will exclusively distribute through the App Store. John Brayton, the developer of “CloudPull”:http://www.goldenhillsoftware.com/ for Google Docs backup, “called this out on Twitter”:http://twitter.com/johnbrayton/status/83214489025134592:

“Good post, but disagree that selling outside the MAS won’t be worthwhile. IMHO we should be using our own stores as bargaining chip.”

“In a thread to the MacSB mailing list”:http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/macsb/message/18381, John has a related version of this reasoning:

“Selling independently provides protection against Mac App Store policy decisions that could affect my app. If Apple decides tomorrow to kick me out of the Mac App Store, I would take a hit but I would still be able to sell my app.”

I couldn’t agree more, to both points. There may be some advantages to going App Store-only — less initial setup for checkout and licensing, no confusion about which version to buy, or where to upgrade — but indie Mac developers should be doing everything they can to control their own destiny. Having your own store is just good business sense.