What would make you support a notes app store?

There has been much debate on a notes application based store/catalog/whatever over the past six months or so.  Maysoft have released one, and there has been much discussion over that recently too.  I’m not here to debate the arguments either way.  If you don’t know what I am talking about,  you can start here.  The short of it from my standing (pun intended) is that many “community” voices do not support the store in its current configuration.  Some vendors I know also do not support the store.  I’m not going to go into the “whys”.  Why?  Because the vast majority of people, myself included, want this to work.  So I have some questions and would like to see some feedback if possible.  Would you support the notes app store (i.e. join it, review applications, post links, even post icons on your site) if it consisted of the following:

  • Was a catagorised catalog (the store just wont work) of applications with independent reviews that are verified.  Vendors put up their own product information and people comment.
  • Was hosted on independent servers/hosting service
  • Sent all details to vendors of any person that wants further information (i.e. a potential lead).  This information is not retained in the application – it is mailed out and then deleted after a designated period of time.  If any vendors started spamming leads after receiving a new email address, the person has the capacity to leave negative feedback as a lead.
  • Charged for this service!  Yes, you heard right.  Vendors pay to have their product listed annually.  A nominal fee to cover all costs and possibly make money (god forbid considering the term “community” equates to “free labour” for most corporates).
  • Was overseen by selected people to ensure that it is correctly managed.  These people have access to the servers and code.  Some of these people (at least) are not vendors/product related and possibly get paid to ensure that nothing untoward happens with data.

I have no interest in this becoming a bitch session, but would like to hear the thoughts of the people I respect in this field.  Nothing above is an absolute, but I would like to know if this type of approach would gather support.


  1. Thomas Duff Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:24 pm

    This is a really good approach, Paul. I think having it appear vendor-neutral with some level of oversight is key. Given the bad taste that many had over the Inside Domino/Best of Showcase episode(S), that would help restore the trust factor of how it’s run and who really sees what.

  2. Steve McDonagh Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:38 pm

    As a potential customer of such a “store” I see it as having some merit as a place to go get either information (like checking amazon reviews) on or the actual product itself. It also has more merit if the £ or $ fees for the products are clearly defined. There would be nothing worse than going to say Amazon or Play.com and looking for a book which would could only buy if you left your email address, inside leg measurement and what you had for breakfast. The important things for me would be (a) an avenue for information and reviews and (b) that it was a real store!

    Amazon are in the process of putting together a Droid App Store ( https://developer.amazon.com/welcome.html ) and I have high hopes of what they are thinking of, which is pretty close to what is described above and I for one look forward to it.

    On the other hand I am a cynic … and sorry to say it but the chances of the whole lotus store thing descending into farce and acrymony are, I think, high

  3. Volker Weber Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:42 pm

    Are you sure it’s worth the effort? How many people would you guess are interested in this?

  4. pmooneynet Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:47 pm

    Not sure Volker. I don’t think a “store” is an option for that very reason and also that the user doesn’t typically purchase tools for Notes. The business does.

    I suspect there would be an interest in a browse-able catalog with reviews though. Nothing massive and never anything that would achieve massive hits, but it would be useful to customers and good vendors.

  5. Giulio Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:52 pm

    Although I think the requirements above are valid, I don’t think the issues are with the vendors.

    I think we need to ask why aren’t potential customers coming? also if we compare it to the current models, (ie. IPhone/Android), they are distinctly different in that customers can get instant satisfaction via a free trial and/or purchase.

    Is this an imposition on vendors that needs to be considered? A capacity for instant satisfaction be it for purchase or trial. Should such a “store” need to support this capability where appropriate ?

  6. pmooneynet Said,

    January 5, 2011 @ 11:54 pm

    @Giulio – They are totally different beasts. It is rare for any product in the Lotus Notes world to be easily installable for an end user. There are some, but few. Smartphones are aimed at consumers. So are their products. Notes, is not.

    So, my thought is that a catalog with reviews for businesses to see is the best option.

  7. Ryan Heathers Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:00 am

    From a recent survey of our customers, we found that most of our individual customers have purchased our Notes app out of their own pocket, no company involvement or reimbursement. Just an interesting datapoint for this topic.

    For lots of reasons, I’m interested to see where this Notes app store conversation goes.

  8. Devin Olson Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:18 am

    Yes, I would be extremely interested, and given the capacity would support such a store.

    My opinions do not necessarily represent those ov my employer, blah, blah, blah…

  9. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:28 am

    @7 – I think your product is one of the few exceptions.

  10. Volker Weber Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:29 am

    “Let’s make an app store” seems to be the new “let’s make it open source”. ;-)

  11. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:33 am

    @10 – it doesn’t have to be, but could easily end up that way.

  12. Giulio Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 12:45 am

    @6 Fair enough. I agree with you that they are separate technological beasts. I encourage you to think about this sort of thing. I had started to write a long-winded response, then saw volker’s comment, delete, delete, delete.

    I think you need to address what he is alluding to first before embarking on this in any significant way. I suspect you will end up investing alot of good energy into something that will not get any traction. Start with Why

  13. Keith Brooks Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 1:14 am

    So let’s say Openntf (which is where I would like it to be given what else openntf offers)or some other independent group had a store, would it be so different than the IBM catalog?
    If one can not purchase directly, of course this goes back to what is the app and what does it cost, but still, if you want leads….market/advertise for it.
    Our company does not have any solutions per se that we offer right now, though this will change this year perhaps, and the question is what is the best way to get the product awareness out there?
    In other words, what is the end game you seek?
    Then that can dictate the application/store/catalog you build.
    Would I like to see it work, yes, but this is a deeper conversation than about a store in my mind.

  14. John Head Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 2:23 am

    Kind of like the chicken and the egg (which came first) … if you make a Notes App Store, will you get more devs/partners to make End User apps? Are their enough End User apps today to make a Notes app store worth it? Hmmm.

    I think the main issue is can this be hosted by anyone other than IBM or a “NfP” group like OpenNTF and be considered impartial. Probably, but that is hard mindshare to build.

    Also, you need to handle click to install functionality – and how do you deal with locked down Notes client policy stuff (that kind of stuff I am sure you recommend Paul).

    Good discussion and thoughts. I hope this post brings some IBMers into the fold for the discussion.

  15. Nathan T. Freeman Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 4:13 am

    @10 – And yeah, what a disaster that whole open source thing turned out to be. I mean, nobody uses that Linux or BSD crap, and Apache, Eclipse, MySQL, PHP, Python, Ruby, OpenOffice, Mozilla, Webkit, Dojo, Jquery, Sencha, Spring, SugarCRM, Ubuntu and RedHat are all total failures. What were all those retards thinking when they tried to build commercial ventures on that stuff?

    There was a time when corporate enterprises provisioned their own medical insurance, their own retirement plans, their own secretarial pools, their own shipping, their own catering, their own office supplies, and their own churches. Any company that does that now is regarded as either incompetent or criminal.

    Why is IT any different?

    If a technology doesn’t support an App Store, it doesn’t support end-user provisioning. And if it doesn’t support that, IT WILL DIE. Sure, it might take a while. Some firms still have cafeterias and human resource departments — but the ones that focus on their core competencies outsource that crap to Aramark and Administaff.

    Adapt or perish.

  16. John Stockbridge Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 7:23 am

    The biggest problem that an app store represents for us is that we sell Domino based solutions to companies who typically don’t run Domino.

    I can see the benefit and the need for what would essentially be a tools based store for existing Domino users.

    If only we could be part of a site that promoted industry based solutions and was then itsself promoted into those industries – that would be something we’d happily pay for.

  17. Bruce Elgort Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 7:30 am

    @John (16) + 1.

    Work the Web

  18. Ben Poole Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 8:12 am

    The ideas presented are sound. I just don’t think it would be worth the effort or outlay for the reasons already outlined here and elsewhere.

    I’d much rather see more effort put into licensing changes so that ISVs can sell hosted Domino solutions properly and without confusion. I’m not sure about the validity of an app store for something that doesn’t have a single click provisioning model (I’m looking at you, Notes client).

  19. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 9:32 am

    Great discussion guys. The client side provisioning and single-click-install are great in concept, but a bitch to implement. This, possibly could be done in later versions. There are so many factors that affect that on the customer side though.

    What about the other factors in play – independent hosting, direct lead sending, reviews, charging etc.

  20. Stuart McIntyre Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 10:24 am

    Absolutely agree re:independent hosting, auditability, sending of leads direct to partners etc. I think it’s a good spec.

    A couple of points:
    1) Whilst Domino/Notes is obviously a key platform for this venture, please don’t make it the only platform. We need a store/catalog just as much for Quickr/Connections/’Vulcan’ – in fact we possibly need it even more on these newer platforms as there isn’t an established appdev/ISV community around them. In addition, Connections is definitely gaining ground in those ‘whitespace’ accounts that are outside the yellow bubble – and thus will bring new customers in to see the solutions available for the other platforms.

    2) ‘Project Vulcan’ is at an interesting stage right now, in that (as far as I know, and I have no insider knowledge) IBM is still defining the vision and the stepping stones to delivering on the promise. Wouldn’t it be great if they would include an app store in that vision? Build in the ability to quickly and easily provision new abilities to ‘Vulcan’ environments, set the rights and permissions to allow both admins and users to deploy new features and apps in a secure and manageable way, set up the ‘app store’ to be the default way to provision both new apps and new versions of the platform itself?

    If we are confining this idea to Notes/Domino as it stands today, then an ‘OpenNTF-style’ NfP would be the right way to do it. The possibilities are limited but the services would be of value.

    However, if IBM truly embraces the idea long-term and builds both the app store (with community assistance) and (crucially) the abilities to use it within the products, then the possibilities are endless…

  21. John Stockbridge Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 11:09 am

    @20 (Stuart). Couldn’t agree more. We have just released a solution for Professional Practice Management (read small lawyers) which uses a combination of Domino/Notes, Quickr and Sametime with a custom designed Domino solution.

    Clients we have and prospects we have shown the solution to so far love it and don’t even ask what the platform is.

    Ideal for the independent cloud offering.

  22. Henning Heinz Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 2:27 pm

    That would mean one more platform (there also is the IBM solutions catalog at Greenhouse). Not a good idea in my opinion. Also notesappstore does not seem to have a lack of applications. There are quite a lot of it.

  23. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 2:51 pm

    @Henning -I’m not suggesting another platform. No point. Imagine popular the appstore would get if our bubble promoted it instead of detracted from it.

  24. Chris Miller Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 4:55 pm

    Ok I typed a whole ton and realized it turned into a rant. Let me reword appropriately

  25. Rob Novak Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 6:01 pm

    I’m going to take a contrarian view and just answer the original question in the post. There is nothing that would make me support a Notes app store. Nada. Notes needs an app store like Hummers need their own catalog of oil change facilities.

    If you have your own Hummer, you can go out and choose the best in town, or cheapest, or closest, whatever suits your fancy. Search engines make this easy.

    If you have a fleet of Hummers in your company, the company makes the decision.

    My analogy may not be perfect, but my sentiment is that too many pixels are being wasted on something that’s not likely to happen in a smallish niche of the industry.

    If you have a product, list it in the Global Solutions Catalog (to get PartnerWorld points if nothing else) and on Greenhouse, and then do your job and sell it yourself. If you’re so inclined, list it elsewhere, but don’t think any kind of app store is a magic bullet for sales.

  26. Rob Novak Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 6:02 pm

    Correction: “Global Solutions Directory”: http://www-304.ibm.com/partnerworld/gsd/homepage.do

  27. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 6:19 pm

    @Rob – get off the fence for christ’s sake and have an opinion.

  28. Richard Hogan Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 6:32 pm

    It appears to me that there are three different motivations that drive this type of app store:
    a) A desire by platform vendor (Apple/Nokia/etc) to make their product/platform more useful so more people will buy it
    b) A desire by app developers to make money from selling apps (any platform)
    c) A need/desire on the part of the consumers for an app once s/he becomes aware of it.

    Some necessary ingredients for this to work are
    – The app store must be created by someone (eg. platform vendor)
    – The app store must be marketed so that both developers and consumers become aware of it
    – The app store must be trusted by both developers, and consumers
    – The app store must be uncomplicated and easy to use, for both developers and consumers.
    – It must be possible for the consumer to consume the app easily (ie. installs itself, etc)
    – The apps must be low fixed cost so that large numbers of consumers buy them, perhaps on impulse.
    – The volume of apps sold must be large enough for developers to be paid for their investment (and this requires a very large population of potential consumers if the cost is low)

    I don’t know if that sums it up completely, or if everyone would agree with it, but my take from this, in the context of a Notes app store, would be that there are not enough of these necessary ingredients present to make a Notes app store fly, or at least not today!

    However I do think that a Notes app ‘directory’ helps ISVs, Notes users, and IBM all achieve more or less what they need.

    As Rob points out, there are already a couple of App Directories that list Lotus apps. Perhaps marketing these more and making these more user friendly / nicer (eg.putting a Lotus skin on the Global Solutions Directory for Lotus related products), could go a long way for what is needed?

  29. Rob Novak Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 7:09 pm

    @Paul my New Year’s resolution was to stay off fences more…I’ve been Desperado way too long.

  30. pmooneynet Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 7:29 pm

    @29.. So its R.F.Novak for real then!

  31. Chris Miller Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 9:01 pm

    Simply put #fail. For two reasons I have stated.

    Vendors will not, and do not, want to pay in nor have any affiliate or other sites showing content (tried this already with tons of them for AppCentrist) and there is not enough of a consumer market. I had categories, browsing, rating and more. You go to the site to buy/contact. Nothing was done in the catalog itself. Nothing was sold nor distributed. The answer from most vendors was “we are not built to handle that type of referral” instead of the answer “we can do that and integrate it”. Or as Rob said, find us on the internet.

    As for the consumer side, eProductivity is different since an end user relies on it, sometimes an enterprise. Most everything else is enterprise driven, deployed and managed. So that limits your market potential to how many companies? Very few. Once you saturate the market you are done. This isn’t a iPhone, iPod or iPad where millions are sold annually.

    Now we add in Vulcan, a web based beast. Many of these products are not web based ready. Another issue. Plus how do you cram some of them into the UI? It just isn’t flying.

    Stick with the catalogs we have now, clean them up and expect not everyone will participate, ever find the catalogs and use Google anyway.

  32. Bruce Elgort Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 9:51 pm

    @Chris + 1.

  33. Mark Hughes Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 9:52 pm

    It will never work!

    Well that is what was told to many who have been big successes in the past. I believe the founder of fedex was told that as well.

    You will never know if it will work until you actually try!

    I like the specs you put forth, i do try to sell my product myself, it is in the IBM catalog with a url that is longer than a long blogspot blog.

    I cant make a living at it, but haven’t done bad. If there was a way to get more exposure to companies who dont live in the Yellow bubble i think it would be great.

  34. Gregg Eldred Said,

    January 6, 2011 @ 10:03 pm

    One small sentence out of Nathan’s comment summed it up for me: “. . . If a technology doesn’t support an App Store, it doesn’t support end-user provisioning.” If I understand his statement, because of security/Policies, Notes users being viewed as “employees” not “customers,” then there is, IMHO, no end-user provisioning in Notes/Domino. And, to answer Paul’s question, I would not support a Notes App Store.

    My leap from Nathan to a “no,” were not tied to each other, it just seems to me that “App Store,” while a nice idea, would be a crapshoot in Notes/Domino. Oh, I love the discussion, but since there are other factors involved, ones where one company does not own the hardware and software (Apple), issues with security (ACL’s), and the need to have a secure, stable environment without impacting the entire organization, an App Store for Notes consumers will be very difficult. Finally, other than a select group of people within any Notes/Domino organization, how many outside of that, who use the software every day for their jobs, even know that the software does more than just mail? Are you thinking of targeting those users? How? What would that look like?

    I hope that I am wrong.

  35. Nathan T. Freeman Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 2:56 am

    @34 – I wonder whether I was being obtuse then. My point was that while existing ISVs seem eager to offer all the reasons why doing nothing is somehow better than doing something, and implementers argue vehemently that they would never allow their users to get more value out of the Notes platform than they’re willing to grant, competing solutions are kicking our collective asses.

    I am absolutely in awe when I read this thread. So many of the same names that constantly gripe about shrinking marketshare and lack of vision are insistent that empowering partners and customers through a real marketplace where they could buy and sell software, making the platform dramatically more valuable, is a bad idea. I’ve seen these very same people argue that it’s apps, not messaging, that makes the Notes platform sticky in enterprises. So how exactly is creating a channel for getting apps in the hands of customers anything other than a giant win?

    IBM will obviously never have the vision and tenacity of Apple, so we won’t see them produce a kick ass Notes App Store anytime soon. But no site professing to be a store will be a success unless it’s ACTUALLY A STORE. Putting up a website with a brand list and links to corporate homepages isn’t a store. It’s Yahoo circa 1995.

    A store is where you BUY things. If you can’t click “buy” and put in a credit card number, it’s not a store. It’s a lie. There are lots of lies on the internet.

  36. Gregg Eldred Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 4:23 am

    Nathan: I am glad you responded. Let’s pretend that there IS a Kick Ass Notes Apps Store. How do you foresee the 190M Notes users discovering it? After all, that is the only market I can see using it. Admins and Developers, for the most part, know where to go for their apps. Do you think that Admins would put something like the Widget Catalog on their server and call it “App Store?” Is that the way to make this fly?

    If those that are lobbying for such a store are expecting IBM and/or their reps to help sell it, they will be sorely disappointed. There has to be some sort of “advertising” outside of PlanetLotus and the “Yellow Bubble.”

    While I have gone on record on other sites with my support of the idea, I struggle with the mechanics, marketing, and distribution. Maybe that is because I look at organizations that allow no user the ability to create a Domino application on any corporate server.

    So, unless this app store is easy to find and understand, allows the user to install locally (like eProductivity), automate all of the ACL, signings, template stuff and what not, and BUY something, you will see more “Yahoo sites, circa 1995.”

    If someone brings me that, I will support it. The rest of the argument concerning independence of hosting servers, an oversight committee, and a catalog doesn’t even make my radar. After all, as a user of iTunes, I never think that application is “independent” or has any other oversight other than the changing wishes/values/goals of Apple. Yet, I continue to make purchases from iTunes and line the pockets of Apple. $1.29 (or so) at a time.

  37. Stuart McIntyre Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 10:16 am

    Well I didn’t think i’d hear myself saying this, but to Nathan ‘Amen, brother…’

    Firstly, please please can we get away from thinking about Lotus as traditional Notes/Domino in large corporations with locked down desktops and brutal security policies. Yes that may be the reality in a lot of situations today, but if it continues that way, there will be no Lotus in 5 years, the world will have continued their shift to competing technologies – the cloud, Google, Open Source, Apple, whatever – and we can continue servicing our little shrinking bubble of loyal customers.

    There are Lotus customers that have only 10 people, there are startups that use Lotus products, there are Lotus customers that have never touched Notes/Domino. If your 50,000 seat corporate can’t see the need for a Lotus appstore, you can bet that these organisations can.

    For us to truly compete, we must make it possible for Lotus customers, whether current or prospective, to use the solutions in ways that they are used to using competitors products today and in ways we cannot imagine right now. That means we need self-provisioning, credit card purchase, auto-update of apps, easy migration from on-premise to cloud, native mobile apps and much much more. All of these elements can be greatly influenced by a sophisticated vertical provisioning system, of which one component is an appstore.

    Just look around – 12 months ago most Apple users/ISVs would have said a Mac appstore was a crazy idea – installing apps was tricky, the licensing mechanisms were too varied and so on. Apple took the bull by the horns and as of yesterday we have a Mac appstore. It ain’t perfect, there are missing apps, flaws etc. But I will bet that in a year’s time, users will have forgotten the traditional methods of installing and managing Mac apps, and Apple will be in an even stronger position than they are today.

    To flourish, we (that’s IBM, ISVs, partners and consultancies) need to get our ecosystem to a point where it is as easy to buy, manage, use and extend Lotus products and services as it is to use the competitors offerings. We are currently way way behind the curve… Do we want to catch up?

  38. Mark Myers Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 11:20 am

    personally, i would very want to see a vetted stamp, hard to do i know, but a small app by a 1 man band simply would not make it on to a live server in a lot of places i have worked, it would need a “not shit code” seal from someone or a panel.

  39. Richard Hogan Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 11:24 am

    @Paul, just realised in my comments above I didn’t respond to your original question in the blog post. My answer is, yes, I would support the Notes app store under the conditions you mention, as long as the cost was minimal and perhaps the name changed as it would not be a store as such.

    @35 & @37, I would be fully in favour of an actual app store for Notes. It is simply that I don’t think the conditions for its success exist (yet!). 190m potential consumers would be a fantastic start, but one issue is that even if they could purchase a Notes app the majority of them couldn’t install it on their Notes client, or on a server. If some simple process / mechanism could be created in Notes so that users could do self provisioning in a way that wouldn’t threaten the security of the server, etc., then the store idea might be feasible. Or if it became possible for the apps to be certified and hosted by IBM in the cloud, and then invoked by the Notes client, that might work. However there are some big if’s in there!!

  40. ChrisC Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 1:30 pm

    Notes app store – not convinced that there is enough money in this to make it a commercialy viable venture.

    “Apps” for Notes are somewhat different to apps for consumer phones as previously said. Notes solutions require internal sales process, customisation, training, implementation feedback, support, reviews, Quality Control, Administration etc…Not credit card buy and download for an enterprise crm system for say a defence manufacturing organisation!

    See the need for a more structured review system where solutions / case studies can be examined by customers using a more web 2.0 / social media format. Some sort of mediation too would be good. Use and promotion of this sort of tool is good PR for IBM / Lotus and should help with market share. IBM seem to have struggled with this sort of thing (to be fair many other vendors have as well)

    Again commercially this may be difficult – market forces will dictate what (if anything) comes out of this. So far we have people gradually building their own versions – hats off to them for giving it a go.

    Being a small ISV and consultant I would love to build an “app” and then click money comes in. Its just not like that I am afraid!

  41. Ryan Baxter Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 2:35 pm

    I saw a few comments saying there is no end user provisioning of apps today in Notes….doesn’t Widgets allow for end user provisioning in Notes? Or is it the case that most end users never see the My Widgets sidebar because it is turned off by policy and the admin pushes down the Widgets? If thats the case than I can see why end users THINK there is no end user provisioning in Notes. I think Widgets IS the way to provision apps in Notes today, however I am sure it cannot cover all apps and falls short in some areas, but its a start.

    In the end I think an app store is a great idea. I think it should be a Lotus app store however not just for Notes/Domino.

  42. Bill Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 3:10 pm

    The responsibility for an App Store lies with the platform owner. Since this platform owner (IBM) wont even bother marketing the product, there seems little hope that they’ll actually put together an app store.

    Even their catalog efforts are – well – lame. Which end-users/customers actually find the catalog or know of its existence ? Is it promoted on the default home page of every notes client ? No.

    So. Support someone other than IBM do a platform store for Notes/Domino ? They’d have to have the reputation of Gandhi, amazing web site skills, and probably have to do it for free in order to make it fly. Oh – and somehow connect with every notes decision maker out there in order to publicise it. Information that even IBM doesn’t have.

    I suspect we’ll have to wait till IBM decide to support the product (and probably rename it ‘IBM Collaboration Rapid Application Development Messaging and Workflow Client v2.51 for Websphere’ or ‘Spork’) before there is sufficient pull-demand from consumers to make this happen.

    —* Bill

  43. Chris Miller Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 4:45 pm

    @35 – Nathan, I dont think you read my whole posting. The idea isn’t the issue. Vendors are not ready to seel in this format. And there is no provisioning of downloading a template, creating a database from it, accepting a cross certificate, signing anything so the agents run, etc.

    There is not enough soluble, provisionable applications that vendors have developed yet. That is a first step. So for now it is Yahoo centric with links to pages to buy.

  44. Stuart McIntyre Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 5:10 pm

    @Rob & @Chris So where do we start?

    Customers want an AppStore, Lotus products need an AppStore, but ISVs ‘aren’t ready to sell’ through one and the products aren’t ready for it.

    Are you saying that if IBM did the job they need to and created an IBM-badged store and also started the work to support it in the products, that you (i.e. SNAPPS and other ISVs) wouldn’t put your products on it?

  45. Ben Poole Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 6:52 pm

    @15 the comment about “Let’s make an app store” being the new “Let’s make it open source” is pretty clear to me: it’s addressing the faulty reasoning that app stores are some kind of silver bullet for Notes et al (in the way that magically open-sourcing something is supposed to give it a new lease of life).

    Of course, these are fallacies: you know as well as the rest of us that, “Build it and they will come” is a nonsense.

    For me, an app store has to have IBM committed to it, to stand the remotest chance of success. Having the vendor fully engaged is a significant part of the battle. The question still stands though: is it worth the effort?

  46. Nathan T. Freeman Said,

    January 7, 2011 @ 7:50 pm

    @45 – Whose effort?

  47. Carl Tyler Said,

    January 8, 2011 @ 12:33 pm

    Just to clarify a point I often see made in the Notes/Domino world. The line that people throw out “190M Notes users”, it is being used incorrectly.

    There are not 190 million Notes/Domino users, there have been 190 million Notes/Domino licenses been sold since it first shipped over 21 years ago. So some of those users are counted more than once, example they had a Notes 2 license, then they bought a Notes 3 license, then a Notes 4 license etc. So that one user has been counted 3 times. Just be aware that number is NOT active Notes/Domino users today, but total licenses sold in 21 years.

  48. Darren Duke Said,

    January 8, 2011 @ 2:30 pm

    @35 Apps make the Domino platform sticky for us. Messaging makes Domino profitable for IBM.

    A Domino Utility Server is $21,000 (give or take). Now, how much money does IBM make on 10,000 mail users?

  49. Gregg Eldred Said,

    January 8, 2011 @ 5:11 pm

    @Carl: I had to throw some number out there for the potential number of customers and chose that “number.” It isn’t right, but I wanted a number.

  50. Alan Lawson Said,

    April 2, 2012 @ 11:53 pm

    Great discussion, I am sorry that I am joining it so late. Well.. we went ahead and did it anyway.

    We recent created an eCommerce solution for a client and it was a simple matter to turn it into an App Store (http://www.LotusAppStore.com) The site has features such as ratings, reviews, serial number generation, credit card processing, and payments to vendors via PayPal.

    It also generates a subscriber customized weekly newsletter that includes new product listings, reviews, and product news.

    We realize that it’s going to take a while to get going but we are going to hang in there (like all Domino developers).

    If anyone has any suggestions on how to get the word out please let us know.

    BTW: We will be posting our eCommerce system on OpenNTF in the next few days. Thanks.

  51. This Week in Lotus 033 – Lotusphere 2011 Business Development Day. Oh, and we discover the location of the Lotusphere Party! – This Week in Lotus Said,

    August 24, 2016 @ 6:24 pm

    […] Store rears its head again – Paul Mooney posts on why the Notes App Store hasn’t taken […]

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