We’ve been hard at work on a Mac desktop version of Informant for some time – and we’ve still got a lot of work to do. The Mac version has been our focus for a few different reasons – with a primary reason that we are Mac developers and so developing a Mac version is done in-house and not via outside contracting.
So what is Early Access? This is something we’re thinking about doing to get Mac Desktop to you sooner than we normally would – but nothing is set in stone yet. The idea stems from the idea that a Desktop Informant released without all the expected features is a bit underwhelming. However, an Informant that contains the core features is still extremely useful and handles the majority of daily uses for a lot of people. If we offer an Early Access it would essentially work like this:
- When we get to a really usable state on all of our core features, we will release it as “Early Access”
- A discounted price to offset the unfinished feature-set and beta-quality code (final release price is expected to be $50)
- Free upgrades all the way through 1.x final release with the promised feature-set
- Private Forum for Early Access users.
- We will list out the features that the Early Access version has, the features that will be in the final release, and those features that are in the mobile releases that are not in the Desktop release, and those features in the Desktop release that are not in the mobile releases – so you know exactly what you’re getting.
If we did an Early Access release, we are essentially giving people an option to buy Informant Desktop at a discounted price before it’s completely finished. Why not just release a public beta? Frankly, betas get abused and with Early Access we are providing a usable app, just not at the feature-level we want for our “complete” 1.0 release. We think this can be a great win-win for everyone since it allows people who are anxiously waiting for Informant Desktop to get it early and get a discount. On our side, we get quality feedback from our most interested customers.
If you are interested in Informant Desktop, but not interested in the “Early Access” – we’d like to hear from you as well so we can understand the interest level in our desktop product as a whole. We will not send emails to this list until we have actual news to give you.
A note on Windows…its not a promise or announcement; we are just gauging interest. If we do a Windows release, it will be a plugin that you install on Outlook and its not something we’ve even begun to plan.