Flow by Moleskine

Capture, create and share ideas in a digital Moleskine

#2 Product of the DayMarch 22, 2019
Draw, sketch, and take notes in a digital Moleskine notebook. With sophisticated tools that are simple to use, Flow gets ideas out of your head and brings your ideas to life.
From the makers of Timepage and Actions.
Reviews
Piérre Reimertz
jlozano
Lance Gilliland
 +1 review
  • jlozano
    jlozanoHello. 👋 I'm a passionate developer.
    Pros: 

    It's a good idea, good product! very useful! good luck! 👍😀

    Cons: 

    Nothing to say

    This product was very useful for me.

    jlozano has used this product for one day.
Discussion
Not denying that it's a nice app, as are all of Moleskin's apps. However, it's entering a pretty crowded marketplace and the subscription model does seem a bit costly compared to the competition. What is the thinking behind choosing subscription over pay once and will Moleskin ever consider a single subscription for all their apps?
@frassmith Hi Fraser, we think we've struck a unique experience in Flow which has come out of a multi-year design exercise with creative pros. We fully expect customers will use Flow alongside the many other great creative apps available. All of our products are subscription because it's the best way to support our customers – we release updates for everything on average every 2 weeks. It also is the only reasonable way to cover our ongoing infrastructure. Regarding a single subscription for all apps, yes this is absolutely something we want to do. Right now the only reason we don't is because the way App Store purchases work prevents us from being able to cross-grade customers who have multiple existing subscriptions with us.
Thanks for the post @htnawsaj ! We've been working on Flow for more than 2 years and are so excited to finally launch. Our drawing engine is entirely built from scratch and the design process to get Flow where it is today has been huge. Questions very welcome!
I love this! I went straight to download. I very much would like this to be my new go to app for sketching and note keeping. The tool dock is genius. The only thing making me hesitant is that there seems to be no support for automatic straight lines or shapes. Is this included in the road map? Great work!
@janet_alexandersson Hi Janet – thanks for the kind words. The tool dock is something we put a lot of thought into. The line/shape feature is something we are actively looking into. We have a feature request board where it's listed – your comments/vote for it are very welcome! https://bonobo.canny.io/flow Thanks again.
Looks great. Not excited by pricing. This means adding a further subscription to the load which I find hard to justify. Would much rather buy once.
@hellotom Agree. Not sure why I would pay for this if I can get a more powerful Notability for a one-time payment that's 3x+ lower than the yearly sub to this.
@hellotom Hi Tom, thanks for the comment. All of our products are subscription and we've found customers really value our long term commitment and regular updates. We wouldn't want to release something we couldn't confidently support for a very long time. We have considered a "forever" price but it would have to be a significant multiple of the annual in order to make it work. Just out of interest, do you subscribe to many apps? Subscription "fatigue" is something we wish we could help with, unfortunately because of the way the App Store handles cross-grading we can't offer a good bundle option at the moment.
@hamey Ben, thanks for your response. As much as I appreciate Moleskine notebooks as well as your interest in apps I find it a challenge to see the value. As @mete_polat mentioned, Notability is a very viable and interesting alternative. At around $1 to $5 for a one-off payment an app should be good to use for 2 to 3 years before an upgrade becomes an enticing opportunity. Your long term commitment to your apps is essentially taken for granted, which is commonplace looking at a range of competitors. I can see a distinction between iPhone, iPad and desktop, each enabling a different set of opportunities. Perhaps there are more opportunities in looking at how you approach your idea of an eco-system.
@mete_polat @hellotom Doing once-off paid upgrades has never been an option for us because the App Store fundamentally doesn't support it. Some apps work around this but it means creating an entirely new SKU, migrating customers and juggling support of the old versions which is too expensive and ultimately gives the customer a worse experience. We'd rather release more often and have all of our customers get the latest features for all of their different devices. One thing we want to be able to do is offer bundle subscriptions for our apps but the constraints of the App Store prevent us from doing it, there is no way to cross-grade our existing customers who have multiple subscriptions to a new bundle subscription whilst refunding them what they are owed for the difference.
@hamey this has been a useful prompt to check out your competitors and discover the brilliant of amongst others Procreate, Sketches Pro and Paper. https://www.producthunt.com/post... https://www.producthunt.com/post... https://www.producthunt.com/post... Your rationale seems somewhat flawed—you are using app store policies as a way to excuse your strategy rather than vice versa. There could be some mileage in such pricing policies if there were sufficient value in your product but that still seems a bit of a stretch. Rather than taking this opportunity to open up your thinking to potential users you seem to prefer using it to justify your approach. — Still not convinced. Much looking forward to the in-depth competitor analysis.
You don't see many companies that produce physical products expand into software. Did you hire an entirely new team to take this on or did you have the right people in-house to build this, @hamey?
@rrhoover There is a story behind that! Our company Bonobo created Timepage in partnership with Moleskine a few years ago, and it's been a great success. As a result we created a new joint venture company with Moleskine called Moleskine Digital Studio which is responsible for this suite of apps (Timepage, Actions, Flow). We're a small team (<10) and everything is done entirely in house (design, development, marketing, support..the lot!). It's really interesting working at the intersection of analogue and digital. We see it as a continuum and want to help people be productive and creative in any way that suits them best.
Hiring
@rrhoover @hamey what an amazing app from a small team. Loving it so far on my iPad!
@rrhoover @samsabri Much appreciated Sam. Often people assume we are some massive team when we are certainly still modestly sized!