Applicom's Blog

Product updates, news & miscellanea from your fellow Apollo developers.

Andrea Di Clemente's picture
By Andrea Di Clemente
Saturday, April 9, 2011 - 18:22
11 comments

Yes, we are finally releasing plans!

Hello friends,

Our journey with Apollo is about to have a major breakthrough; we are excited about this, and would love to share this with you, our users. So, here is the scoop:

We are about to release plans. This means that Apollo is about to become a paid service!

There are several reasons for this -- and they aren't exactly what you would expect. The main reason is that Apollo is now a mature product. When we launched Apollo in July 2010, people asked us: "Is it safe to use? If I put my task list in there, is it going to be there tomorrow?". Regardless of how much testing we had done, how much we audited the code or how many load tests we ran, we needed to see people use Apollo in order to prove -- to ourselves and to others -- that it actually worked. And it did. We had to do our homework with fine tuning, especially since we experienced a growth rate we didn't quite expect, but we always managed to overcome our problems. The other reason why we are releasing Apollo, is that we are now confident that it has now reached a point where it does what most our users want it to do -- plus, we know exactly what it really needs doing (here is a short list everybody around here knows by heart: tasklist and project templates, reply-by-email, iCal support, stronger overview, APIs , just to mention the most important ones).

Communicating with our users has also been quite an experience. We decided not to set up a forum-like site, but instead getting people to reach us by email; we answered every single one of your emails, carefully, only using pre-cooked templates when it made sense to do so. We created a ludicrous number of tickets based on our users' feedback, and answered to every point of long, detailed point lists. We established a relationship with our users -- something that couldn't have possibly happened with a forum-like system. I will admit, plainly, that communicating was (and is) heavily time consuming. However, it's totally worth it, and we will continue to do so as long as it's humanly possible (although in the future we might have forums).

What will our prices be like? Everyone who reached out to us ad sent us an email pretty much knows about our pricing (or, a very close approximation of what they will be). If you are worried about prices and haven't written to us: don't be worried; Apollo will not be expensive, will not be charged per user, and will come with a cheap solo plan for one-man shops. Plus, we are determined to give a lifetime discount to those workspaces created early on in the game. We'll decide in the next few days how much of a discount our early users will get -- it will most likely depend on when the workspace was created. Since we haven't finalised our decision yet, I will keep quiet for now.

Finally... thank you to our early adopters, who trusted us at such an early stage in this project.

11 comments so far

Ari (Finland)'s picture

Ari (Finland)

Mon, 04/11/2011 - 04:57

1

Hi Apollo-people,
thank you for really great tool! We are now between two products....Apollo feels better, but price info would be nice to make our final solution between two systems. We are a multimedia/elearning company with about 10 people. Few months test use of Apollo has been a success. If you do what you say in this blog post ("Apollo will not be expensive"), we will choose Apollo for sure. Hope you announce the plans soon. And, have you got any plans for an iPad app?

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Mon, 04/11/2011 - 08:25

2

Hi,

We are releasing plans _very_ soon. If you are in a hurry, send us a quick email to know what they will be!

Bye,

Merc.

Michael McLaughlin's picture

Michael McLaughlin

Mon, 04/11/2011 - 23:54

3

I just saw the pricing plans. It's going to be a close call wether to pay ot use freedcamp which is free.

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Tue, 04/12/2011 - 00:04

4

Hi,

You obviously need to use a program that suits your needs, and has the right price, features and usability for you!

If you don't need CRM, cases&deals, and the calendar, and you don't need storage space, maybe Freedcamp is a good choice! (Keep in mind that Freedcamp gets quite expensive as soon as you purchase more storage space)

Bye,

Merc.

Ben's picture

Ben

Tue, 04/12/2011 - 21:17

5

I saw your plans and am a little disappointed. My communication with Andrea showed that the term "CRM" is not really matching yet. There are a lot of features missing to call Apollo a CRM. Yes, you can have deals and contacts, but mainly that's it already.

What I can not really understand is that you offer 12 Deals for Basic, but for every other plan it's unlimited, even Solo.

I'm using Solo, and yes, it's not too expensive, but I would have prefered a more flexible way of pricing. This feels like copying Basecamp which is famous for being arrogant and not flexible at all.

I hope you are successful with your plans and realize all the suggestions, improvements and bugs I reported to you - for free.

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 10:03

6

Hi Ben,

We are _definitely_ listening.
The trouble is that no matter how hard we try, there will always be users who don't like some aspects of pricing.
We tried _really_ hard rewarding our existing users, and keeping prices as low as we could possibly keep them. This resulted in a good Apollo plan for just $9.80/month (for early adopters) -- whereas other software out there charges you that much per _user_!

We will have an internal discussion on the deal limit for the basic plan.

Thank you for your feedback!

Merc.

Hans Kok's picture

Hans Kok

Tue, 04/12/2011 - 22:23

7

Hi Tony,

I think the pricing is rather nice, especially when comparing to e.g. Basecamp (alone same price more or less, actually -1$ :-) ) but including a CRM (or Highrise). Also the storage space is very generous.
We will need "Plus" at least as we have more projects and deals, but 48$ a month for a good Project Management System and CRM is rather nice I would say. So for a serious company (or even a single person company even 23$ or less ...) is a steal. If you're not able to afford that per month it might not be worth starting a company anyway.
So I am happy, although we would like to see some additional functionality, but I know that will be there soon.

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 10:03

8

Hi Hans,

Thanks!

Merc.

Kevin Gilbert's picture

Kevin Gilbert

Fri, 04/15/2011 - 13:08

9

I was a bit nervous to find out what the pricing was going to be. I really think this is a great balance of CRM and PM and I was hesitant to get too excited for fear of the pricing being too high. However, when I consider all that is here, and I consider the early adopter discount, I can honestly say that I think this is truly a great deal. I'm excited about the future of the product and I look forward to building our business with it. We've looked at just about everything out there and I don't think anything offers the design aesthetic, the features, the responsiveness, the pricing that Apollo is offering. Sure there are a few features that I'd really like to see soon, but I think this is a great start and we're taking the plunge. Good work guys.

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Fri, 04/15/2011 - 14:05

10

Hi,

It's great to read this. Thank you so much for your kind words and your support, Kevin!

Merc.

Ari's picture

Ari

Sun, 04/17/2011 - 04:02

11

I asked (in the beginning of this thread) about the iPad app. I've used now Apollo few days with my new iPad2 and it's actually very usable with just Safari. App might bring some tablet friendly improvements, but I like mobileapollo very much even this way. I agree that new plans are good...for a quality software you must pay or choose something worse if your business can afford low quality PM or CRM.

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