[Interest] Digia to acquire Qt from Nokia
thiago.macieira at intel.com
Thu Aug 16 14:00:28 CEST 2012
On quinta-feira, 16 de agosto de 2012 07.12.23, Atlant Schmidt wrote:
> Please don't distort my argument. My argument, boiled down,
> is that switching to any open-source licensing approach
> destroys the owner's direct value in a software property.
> I don't argue whether that's GPL, LGPL, or the actually-
> free licenses.
We are arguing that this argument is wrong.
You've taken one of many definitions of value: future cash flow from licensing
revenue. And even with *that* definition, using a freer license may increase
the licensing revenue, since the market expands.
That did happen for Qt, so it's not theoretical.
Just think of another analogy: elasticity. If I have a product that costs P
and I sell it Q times, my revenue is Q * P. If my product demand is inelastic,
if I lower the price by ΔP, then my revenue will be reduced by Q * ΔP. That's
a bad decision.
However, if my product is relatively elastic, a decrease in price of ΔP will
cause an increase of unit sales of ΔQ such that the total revenue
(Q+ΔQ) * (P-ΔP) > Q * P
With most goods and services, demand is relatively elastic. Remember when HP
decided to dump the TouchPad stock by lowering the price to $99?
In Qt's case, you have to think of it like this: out of a population of N
total users, a fraction x (0 < x < y; for example, x = 0.1 means 10% of the
users buy licenses) of them will choose to buy the commercial license. That's
Q = N * x. My revenue is Q * P = N * x * P.
If I choose a freer license for the Open Source version, then the fraction of
people who will choose the commercial license will reduce by a factor of y
(with 0 < y < 1; for example y = 0.6 means 40% of commercial licensees
switched to Open Source and 60% stuck with commercial).
However, at the same time, the population of total users increases by a factor
of z (z > 1). That means Q' = N * z * x * y. Since the price P didn't change,
let's focus only on Q.
This is a good deal if
Q' > Q
N * z * x * y > N * x
z * y > 1
Remember what Chuck said: the market was on its way to a 10x expansion (z =
10). That means any retaining anything above 10% (y = 0.1) of the original
licensees means that the value of the asset actually increased, by *your*
Thiago Macieira - thiago.macieira (AT) intel.com
Software Architect - Intel Open Source Technology Center
Intel Sweden AB - Registration Number: 556189-6027
Knarrarnäsgatan 15, 164 40 Kista, Stockholm, Sweden
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