It's Not a SaaS

Rob Galanakis on April 3, 2023

woman signing contract while the devil watches

Most software that developers use falls into one of two camps:

  • You pay a monthly or yearly fee to use it (Software-as-a-Service/SaaS). Prices can change, features can change, and products can disappear.
  • Software is open source. You may self-host it, or pay someone for a hosted version.

Some problems that are solved better one way or another:

  • You probably don't want to host your own payroll processing software, and it's better off as a SaaS.
  • It'd be unworkable to not have access to the internals of your programming languages, so most languages are open source.

There are, though, problems that are not clear cut. There's a third approach, which used to be very popular but has become less popular over time, where you would buy a software product and just get to use it. You'd buy Office 2003, or Photoshop 6, and you'd have it forever. Now, you wouldn't get updates, but you did own the software.

This practice fell out of favor when companies realized they could squeeze more money from customers if they had to pay up every month. Also, software came to be delivered continuously, so a moment-in-time purchase didn't make sense as it wasn't tied to a yearly product release. Some of these continuously shipped features were useful; others are just excuses for Release Notes (Adobe Photoshop 6 was perfectly good for me, thank-you-very-much).

We're not interested in squeezing customers, and we're not interested in feature bloat. We want to solve a problem, solve it well, and have customers who are happy to pay us, rather than being compelled to pay every month or lose what already is working.

To that end, WebhookDB is proud to continue the noble heritage of licensed software:

  • The license gives you permission to use the product.
  • If you stop paying your license you stop getting updates.
  • You can still run older versions forever.
  • If WebhookDB itself goes away, you can still run what you have.

If you're ready to embrace more cooperative pricing, give WebhookDB a try or get in touch.

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