During last week’s Mobile Asia Expo, 4iiii Innovation CEO Kip Fyfe suggested that the wearables industry could look toward the freemium model used by mobile app developers to increase the stickiness of products.
“I really think that a lot of devices we’ve got in the wearables sector are in the ‘novelty factor’ category – they are below what I would class as a minimum viable product,” he said during his keynote presentation.
Under this scenario, Fyfe argues, vendors would offer some of the features for free, while some others would cost extra money after an introductory trial period. For instance, fitness enthusiasts could be charged an additional fee to add data recording, sleep monitoring or notifications on top of basic heart rate monitoring features.
Current engagement models involving points and rewards won’t work in the long run.“You still have to pay for the device, because devices really do cost money to make, and you have to make some money on that. And then you use a modified freemium model [for features],” the executive said.
Current engagement models involving points and rewards won’t work in the long run. More stickiness is needed and these additional features cost real money to be developed and maintained properly.
“We need more stickiness to make these wearables work properly – and I’m in the wearables business, and I agree we have a problem,” Fyfe concluded.