Setapp Announces Early Access to ‘Unstore’ Alternative to Apple’s Mac App Store

Setapp is a new subscription service that makes a growing suite of more than 45 popular macOS applications available to users for a flat monthly fee. Anyone who wants early access to the platform, which is scheduled for release early next year, must register at the Setapp website and priority admission will be granted on a rolling basis over the coming weeks. The new service is the latest spinoff of hugely successful, award-winning Mac software company MacPaw which has an installed base of more than 5 million customers worldwide.

Setapp is a less risky and more flexible way to buy, sell and use Mac software, providing a better experience for both users and developers. Users pay $9.99 per month and get unlimited access to a handpicked collection of high-quality apps. Instead of paying for upgrades, expensive in-app purchases to unlock important product features, or freemium apps that ‘trick’ users into buying more later, users of Setapp get access to fully functional software with the latest updates delivered continuously in the background. Already, a wide range of Mac software applications are available including Ulysses, CodeRunner, Blogo, Marked 2, RapidWeaver 7, Eltima Player and Base. Under development for more than a year, Setapp is expected to include up to 300 apps as the service gains momentum.

“The way you get Mac software is about the change in a big way,” said Oleksandr Kosovan, founder and CEO of MacPaw and its Setapp division. “Both Mac aficionados and casual users are going to be blown away by the new and innovative software available in Setapp. No annoying ads. No paid upgrades. No hidden charges. Just get Setapp, and you’re all set.”

To get started with Setapp, users download a small app which creates a folder right in the Finder on their Mac. Inside the folder there is a library of applications that users can click on to install and use as long as their subscription is active. While a connection to the internet is needed to download and update the software in Setapp, once installed the apps will continue to work offline as normal.

Kosovan commented, “Setapp offers a sleek, fast way to get all of the coolest apps you actually want. Gone are the days of paying for apps only to find out later it’s not what you wanted, or searching through junk to find a gem.”

Mac users and developers of Mac software have been frustrated by the shortcomings of the Mac App Store, voting with their feet in a subtle exodus. Sifting through more than 30,000 apps to find the right software using Apple’s notoriously poor search and user ratings is difficult and time-consuming. And since there is no ability to try software before you use it, users must pay for each app just to find out if it is what they want, and no refunds are allowed. Setapp provides a smaller, more select slate of apps with a focus on usability, quality and a great user experience. “We evaluate and test all software before it is allowed into the service to ensure Setapp has only the very best,” added Kosovan.

The Future of macOS App Delivery

Setapp provides an attractive option for developers of Mac software who have in the past been hamstrung by the limitations of the Mac App Store. Unlike the Mac App Store, Setapp makes it possible to offer any type of Mac software. For example, categories of apps, including developer tools and pro apps, cannot be distributed in the Mac App Store because they cannot be sandboxed without crippling their feature set. Often presented with the choice between degrading the functionality of their apps or leaving the store to sell their software online, many developers have pulled their apps in favor of direct downloads. As a result, a growing number of apps are no longer distributed on the platform with abandoned apps becoming a hidden problem.

The Setapp model is unfettered by these issues, so developers can focus on making great software and not complicated pricing schemes. There is no need to sell software as a one-off purchase, and unlike the Mac App Store which treats subscriptions as a proxy for paid upgrades, developers will not get punished by consumers for the terrible experience of in-app purchases, annoying ads, and a lack of trial software.

Rui Aureliano, maker of Sip, a color picker app for Mac and iPhone, said, “The opportunity to join Setapp was attractive to Sip for a number of reasons: the business model, which definitely is the next step for the app market, the high quality of the other apps on the platform, and the fact that Macpaw is building it.”

“Setapp fills in the gap between consumers and small development studios that depend on repeatable income,” said Iliya Yordanov, founder of SilverWiz which makes the well-regarded personal finance app MoneyWiz, “It makes it easy for developers to submit their apps, and easy for consumers to find, download and use them. Developers can focus on retention rather than rebilling, which puts emphasis on improving their products instead of seeking more ways to make money from customers.”

Revenue, equal to 70 percent of the total generated by their apps, is shared with developers based on which applications certain customers use during the billing cycle. As a reward, two-thirds of the remaining 30 percent goes to developers in the form of a ‘partner fee’ which is based on a lifetime value of each user they have brought to the platform.  This unique approach fosters a growing ecosystem of apps and incentivizes developers to continue providing outstanding software. Additionally, developers can have peace of mind that Setapp is designed with built-in anti-piracy measures to protect them from lost revenue due to cracked apps. The submission process is simple, and Setapp takes care of payments and security.

Tech Specs

macOS 10.10, min disk space 150mb

About Setapp

Setapp is a flat-fee subscription service for macOS software. It provides the ultimate ‘unstore’ alternative to the Mac App Store—a single monthly subscription of only $9.99, all the apps included, all in one place. With a hand-selected library of high-quality, fully functional software, Setapp is relied upon by Mac users and developers of Mac software alike as the best way to buy, use and sell Mac apps. Setapp is a wholly owned subsidiary of MacPaw, an award-winning developer of Mac software including CleanMyMac and Gemini. The company is based in Kyiv, Ukraine, with offices in Ireland. For more information or to get started with Setapp go to Setapp.com.

MacPaw and Setapp are trademarks of MacPaw in the United States and/or other countries. Apple, the Apple logo, Mac, macOS, and Macintosh are trademarks of Apple. Netflix is a registered trademark of Netflix Inc.  All other company and product names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

Press Contact

Julia Petryk | julia@macpaw.com

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