Opera has announced the global launch of its Opera Apps Club, a subscription service that allows subscribers unlimited downloads from a curated list of premium apps. Think of it like a VIP Play Store where every app is hand-picked for quality: you pay entry to get in the door, but then everything is included once you’re in. No ads, no in-app purchases, just complete and unlocked premium Android apps.
The idea actually comes from an app subscriptions service called Bemobi that Opera acquired in mid-2015. That company had already been offering the service in Latin America and Brazil to six million subscribers, but it will now be expanded globally under the moniker Opera Apps Club. With two OEMs on board and 34 carrier partners, if you haven’t already been exposed to Opera Apps Club, you soon will be.
The nice part about carrier integration is that the subscription fee can be added to your monthly bill, meaning there’s no money exchanging hands within the app and no “bill shock” when someone gets carried away with in-app purchases. All included apps – over 400 right now – are free to download for subscribers, and you will get unlimited free in-app items as well. There’s even a free week-long trial for those that aren’t quite sure if the idea is for them.
The idea is not only a great cost-saving idea for fans of games with in-app purchases, but it also benefits subscribers in emerging markets. This is because Opera Apps Club makes premium apps available to everyone, including those that live in countries without the Google Play Store or without access to credit and debit cards for making app purchases. It’s a novel idea, and one we’re sure to hear more about in the near future.
What do you think about a subscription premium app service? Would you use it?