In a world full of "free" games and applications, every once in a while you have to pause and think about just what it is you are "buying" when you download a free game or app. An issue I ran into with one of my applications yesterday made me do just that.
I've been using OmniFocus as my go-to task management tool for quite a few years now and have never had a lick of trouble with the application...until now. I won't go into all the details here, but I essentially lost a good portion of my data (all of my work Contexts were somehow lost). The good news is that OmniFocus has backups, so I could just revert back to a previous backup and recover what I had lost. Except reverting to the backup failed. I was now getting into the "complicated" fix territory. If OmniFocus were like most applications out there I would be stuck with having to email tech support back and forth. But not in this case. I was able to pick up the phone and immediately speak to someone in Tech Support within the OmniGroup (the company that developed OmniFocus). Within just a few minutes the wonderful tech support person at the OmniGroup had identified the problem (it was a bug with how their syncing worked) and figured out how to work around the bug. I was back up and running with my original data in just a few minutes.
Now this will really blow your mind. OmniFocus is an iOS app. How many iOS apps do you know of that have tech support that you can call? Not very many. But that's my point here. In a world full of apps that are "free", its nice to have a few apps that are really important to you personally that you actually pay REAL money for. That way, when things go to hell there is a REAL human you can call that can help pull you out of the fire. I'm not advocating that every application out there needs to go to a pricing model similar to what the OmniGroup uses (let's face it, they charge a premium for their applications). But they provide a premium service that I am more than happy to pay for.
OmniFocus isn't the only OmniGroup iOS app that I use on a regular basis. Here is the full list of OmniGroup apps I own:
- OmniFocus - A universal task management iOS app
- OmniOutliner 2 - A universal outlining app for iOS
- OmniPlan 2 - A universal scheduling/Project Management iOS app
- OmniGraffle 2 - A universal diagraming iOS app
So the next time you hesitate or just flat reject the idea of paying REAL money for an app, reconsider. You just might get your money's worth...