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Assalama Liekum, i want to know a thing about softwares. That how free software producers get paid or benefit. Like if i am using free Pidgin,AVG or any other free software by downloading it from Internet. Then is there any system that they get paid or got any benefit from my usage of that software ? Like is there any statistical way? Thanks!
There are three major ways to earn income from freeware:
1) Subscription for Customer Support.
Usually a year of subscription in which company will provide customer support through telephone and/or emails and/or other methods.
For example, when you are running an application in a critical situation, you do not want to get some error and then let the system shutdown for days. Instead you’ll contact the author (company) of software and ask his/her assistance to clear the error and continue your work.
2) The “freeware” are usually subset (lite-version) of “commercial” grade software.
This is also a common method. For example, used by AVG and Avast anti-viruses (and many other companies). They give out freeware software for general public but that freeware software is a subset of commercial grade software (that comes with more options and tools). Furthermore, there is no customer support (or priority customer support) for freeware software. Commercial grade software gets priority while getting critical software upgrades.
The software is freeware and usually there is no or little customer support (not always true). Author of software ask users to give donation if they like the software. Nobody is force to give donation. There is no trial period. The software works full-fledged with all options and tools.
These ideas are much better when dealing with global audience. The ideology behind is that some percentage of people will always get some to crack the software and will use it no-matter-what. Therefore, it is better to give software as free and legal, and ask for donations (I am talking of donation-ware).
Or ask from businesses (Subscription to Customer Service Support method) to pay a little for customer support.
Allow general people to try and use “lite” version of commercial software. Some people and corporates will buy commercial software that usually comes with subscription to customer support.
As we are discussing “freeware”, that’s why I haven’t discussed but it is important to mentioned that there are “trail-ware” and “shareware” methods too. But now-a-days, they are little less famous and “donation-ware” is getting more famous.