With a polite nod to Shakespeare for the title this past week has really brought up the issue of trial versions for apps that cost money.

The reason it has become a discussion point recently is primarily due to the release of the Carbon Twitter App for Windows Phone

Now just for some background Carbon is the Windows Phone version of a very popular webOS Twitter application which was called the premier Twitter app for webOS.  So it was already well known and highly anticipated for the Windows Phone platform.  Its arrival was also marked by some challenges in getting certified in the Windows Phone Marketplace which were ultimately addressed to Windows Phone brass who helped move the process along.

The new Twitter client arrived just four days ago and since then has already had 60 reviews posted and in return carries an overall rating of 4.5 stars.  According to the Carbon devs they are already at the top of its category in the Marketplace.  It has also been extensively covered across tech blogs over the last week as it arrived in the marketplace. 

Obviously, the app is very popular, the reviews are positive and it is considered a power users Twitter app for Windows Phone.  It cost just $1.99 however, in its initial release to the marketplace there is no trial option for the app.  That means you have to fork out two dollars to try it out to see if you like it.  If for some reason you do not like it then you are out those two dollars,

As this discussion has developed about the lack of a trial version one side has said two dollars is nothing and the other side has said it is a lot to pay for a trial. I am in the second group.  In the scheme of things I get that two dollars is not like paying $40 for a piece of software however, when the marketplace allows for trials why not offer one?  Many devs who offer trials place ads in it to earn some revenue and an upgrade of that app to the paid version removes the ads.  This is the typical approach from what I have seen.

Now to the credit of the developers of Carbon they have already announced that the next version of the app is in the works.  That version will have a trial version so that is good news and I look forward to trying out the app at that time.

So what do you think?  Trial or no Trial? What is your preference?