Monetization via Paid Unlocking

AKA: Paid performance, Pay for speed, Pay for features, Crippleware, Feature-limited

Contributions made by a user to un-throttle or unlock higher performance or special features. Payment could be collected via an registration key, external API or use of a crypto wallet and could become recurring.


Variants & Options:



Characteristics Value Note
Effort to set-up Days Integration and setup of several small subsystems
Effort to maintain Low Probably only updating subsystem
Cost to set-up None Β 
Cost to maintain Low Platform used for unlocking might cost a little (or a share of the income)
One-time Income High ICO might bring a bigger initial income
Recurring Income Medium Depends on the value created and number of running instances
Income Predictability Medium If users accept paying it should become stable; Crypto might be very volatile
Full income Threshold 500+ Price can be set by maintainers
Recipient C Β 
Additional Work Low Extra work to initially develop unlocking system
Visibility Low Low performance / functionality might be OK for user
Necessity to pay Low Might be OK for user but can be made uncomfortable
Entry Threshold Medium Paying for API access might be easy but paying in crypto might be more complex
Countervalue Perf. User pays for performance or unlocked features
Scalability Medium Scales with the number of users (who need the performance)
Effort for marketing Low Will make waves but no β€œsale” is necessary
Competitors None Β 
Software types Special Best for stand-alone systems on one server (e.g., databases, blogs, LMS, etc.)

NOTE: Due to the nature of open-source a user can fork and remove the unlock check. But he had to do it every time and the maintainers could forbid it in a special License.