[Development] Changes to Qt offering

Lisandro Damián Nicanor Pérez Meyer perezmeyer at gmail.com
Tue Jan 28 14:19:25 CET 2020

On 20/01/28 01:51, coroberti . wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 28, 2020 at 1:01 PM ekke <ekke at ekkes-corner.org> wrote:
> >
> > Am 28.01.20 um 11:14 schrieb coroberti .:
> > > On Tue, Jan 28, 2020 at 11:55 AM Konstantin Shegunov
> > > <kshegunov at gmail.com> wrote:
> > >> ....
> > >>
> > >>> The third change is that The Qt Company will in the future also offer a lower priced product for small businesses. That small business product is btw not limited to mobile like the one Digia had some years ago, but covers all of Qt for Device Creation.
> > >>
> > >> I see a couple of issues here. Firstly, 100k/year *turnover* isn't a small business, that's a nano-company (i.e. 1-2 devs max) and if they're providing a device alongside the software that 100k is going to be eaten in no time. Notice we are not talking profit here, but raw revenue. Whoever from sales came up with that number, really did a botched up job with it. On that note, even if we accept that it's applicable, the straightforward math shows you want to bill 0.5% - 2.5% of the total turnover, so while this sounds good initially it really isn't that shiny when you crunch the numbers. That offering is stillborn from my point of view.
> > > Agree with Konstantin that the definition of a small business isn't realistic.
> > > The realistic one is up to 5 developers and up 500k/year USD sales.
> > >
> > > ...
> > >
> > > So, hello, Qt-company, and consider to make something really friendly
> > > for small businesses ...
> >
> > +1 Konstantin and coroberti

+1 from me too. I was going to write something alone the very same lines when
they did it before me.

> > I'm only a single mobile app developer and for me it is ok with 100k and
> > $499/year
> >
> > but I know many developers from small businesses (2-5 devs) and it's
> > really not realistic to think they have less 100k sales total per year ;-)
> >
> > coroberti's idea (up 500k sales per year) covers the target (StartUp,
> > Small Business) much better and is something making it easier to
> > motivate mobile app devs to use Qt instead of Flutter, Xamarin, React or so.
> >
> > please rethink your definition of StartUp / SmallBusiness to make this
> > license a success for Qt

Let alone markets in which those amounts are really insane. I'm also using only
the LGPL parts of Qt because current licensing scheme is just too expensive.

> Thanks, Ekke,
> And several more params not to miss for a small license:
> - think how to be customer friendly and not red tape;
> - charge once a year or monthly - by user selection;
> - provide a guarantee of not increasing charges for least for 5 years;
> - provide guarantee of not changing the model for a while.
> Perhaps, this is not your major market, but you can really get some income here.
> At the end of the day, you are not providing support and all your income
> is a pure profit unless you screw matters and push people out.

Another idea in this camp: I think many of us in the "embedded" world [1] would benefit
from a license "exemption" more or less in this way:

- Users will use the open source part for developing.
- Users will not get support unless they pay for it.
- Users pay a very minimal amount of money (possibly per device) for using
  normally LGPL3/GPL[2 3] code as if it where LGPL2, ie:
  - dynamic linking required.
  - app should make explicit that it's using a special license for this.
  - Qt patches should be made open source.

Let's say you can add ~0.50 US$/device/qt submodule. So if I use widgets (LGPL
already), virtualkeyboard and the serialbus submodules then I would be paying
1 US$/device.

This also has another side benefit for users: they can use a distro and build
upon it.

[1] I would like to emphasize the difference between an "embedded device"
commercial license and the fact that as long as someone is follwoing the LGPL
can dispatch devices with proprietary code properly linked against Qt core, for
example. I am writing this because some years ago I was contacted by the latin
american sales manager and he simply mixed those things a lot. I don't know if
it was because of a misundertanding on his side or because he wanted to sell
stuff. Let's say it was the first thing ;-)

Kinds regards, Lisandro.

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