[Discussion to Solution] How can community App builders be rewarded?

Hey all,

I would like to start a topic where we (mostly by community-app-developers) can discuss a possible solution to the fact that Community App developers hardly get any real reward for there (sometimes very) hard work.

Because, as i see it, Athom has always been willing to adapt and/or listen to there community, especially when a solution is:

  • Handed to them, requiring hardly any further design of the solution.
  • The solution is benificial to them and to Athom being financially strong.
  • The (implemention of the) solution does not require any real investments by Athom (to be win back later).
  • It improves there products and/or (community) Apps.

So, i suggest that we as Community, try to come up with a solution matching any required criteria.

And personally, i also have a “criteria”: reward should especially come from people who are not active on this forum.
Because right now, when i get a donation, it is usually from someone very active on this Forum already.
While there are many people out there using the apps that don’t even know about or come to the Forum. They only leave bad reviews.
Look up a lot (not al ofc) of bad reviews and the posters cannot be found on the Forum by any way.
And look up many good reviews and it turns out that most are (active) on this Topic.

So, to start off, a very rough idea:
A Community app should cost each user who installs it f.i. €0,50.
€ 0,10 goes to Athom for the overhead of the required features for this.
The other €0,40 goes to the developer.
Community apps should have a by developer setable tag wheter the app should be bought or not.
If you have it off during a starting-period to get it growing, and you turn the paid-feature on, all already installed users will not have to pay. Only new installes.

When you buy a Homey, you get a “giftcard” for f.i. €5,00 for community apps.
These (gift)cards can be bought in the Athom Store.

And now, i don’t have a good solution to the taxability of these payments: i guess, to activate the Paid-tag, the developer needs to sign some legal documents with Athom.

But let’s discuss and (try to) come to a solution!

German Discussion topic: Community Entwickler bezahlen? - :de: Deutsch (German) / Off-Topic (DE) - Homey Community Forum


I’d go for ‘A Beer a Year’ donation.

It’s a reasonable system, just donate €2,99 each year to every developer of a community app you use.

Requires no fancy systems, just awareness by the app users. But creatin that awareness is the challenge.
For the developer it’s recurring and motivation the keep supporting the app, such as rewritting for a new SDK.

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So, do you mean like, for example: a (non-mandatory) button that pops up around new-years (the holidays) with an easy to goto donation page/site/whatever?

Issue is: Many Forum users also have paypal or other means of payment.

But many that use Homey as standard users, do not: So a ideal-donate-button supplied by Athom that payes out to the App Developer.
Something like that?

I do not have a good idea how to do this, do not think a popup or something around new-years is the way to go. About timing, I’d take the ‘installation birthday’.

paypal (and alike) are the best means, haven’t seen many foreigners with a Dutch bank account to use iDeal.

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I think everyone should have to pay a fee to leave a bad review. They get a discount for each star they give :grin:


Let the community vote for awards. In several categories. Perhaps a small incentive for winning in a category.

Also a donation link on the app page for community developers.

There already is.

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Unless you are a verified developer :sob:


Indeed there is, never noticed… Not for all (private) developers though. Most of my most used apps seem to not have it enabled.

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Well, they need to enter there paypal (or other) account in the app manifest.

I actually think that’s good and bad. Athom wants to sell its product so they should really hire some people just to make apps. I just read that the colleague from the Shelly app (8000 users) only gets a t-shirt and a few small things from Athom and from Shelly the new devices to integrate. From my point of view, that’s a bit shabby because he’s not a programmer either and acquired everything himself and was then asked if he wanted to be an official developer. From my point of view, Athom should make the basic apps available free of charge and determine (or have) a timetable which new app is available each month. One every month would be enough. The community than could make votes which apps they want. On the other hand, many apps are special and may only be used by a handful of users. Unfortunately, I have no idea how complex it is to create an app. I wanted to try it myself, but after Athom’s instructions, it was somehow too tedious for me. For example, I would like to have a sSonnen (PV) app. Api etc. all known…or one for the Pluggit ventilation system. Since I don’t know how much effort is required for this, it would be worth EUR 200 to me. But to stay with the Shelly app example. I think a lifetime fee of EUR 10 is fair. But then it must also be guaranteed that the developer will not jump off at some point. If someone commissions an app and pays for it and then puts it in the App Store for free, they should be mentioned as a sponsor. For more specialized apps, the price should actually be higher… but I think a smaller amount would be fair. Maybe one should link the price to the number of users? I think 0,50 EURO is far too low price… but I don´t knowe how much work it is and what knowledge is required to create an app.

And don´t forget that this “income” must be taxed…at least here in Germany. so if it is 40 Cent for the developer for e.g. the Shelly app with 8000 user…it´s EURO 3200,-- . After tax if he has an ordinary job here in Germany it is the half. If it takes 2 hours to create an app and one hour a month for updates it is fair…if it takes 100 hours it´s not worth it. Maybe if people get fair payment for development a lot of more apps will appear.

Do you mean that App building should be restricted?
That community developers should not be allowed to develop apps anymore?

I like being able to develop my own private and public apps. It gives me the freedom for which i have bought Homey.

And the Shelly developer apparently made a choise to do that, nobody is forcing him right? (i don’t know the situation)

Athom’s business model has always been: They risk there (financial) future to setup a company that creates a device and environment, in which people themself are free to create Apps.
No reward was ever really intented, afaik. Only the pride for developing an awesome App and sharing that with others.

But perhaps i misunderstood what you meant?

I am not a developer, but a Homey fan and frequent Community user/contributor.
And I do not have a solution, but I definitely would support a model where the all community developers are supported by a small fee per installed app (i.e.).

Seems only fair to me for the hard work they put in to make Homey a success and my home as smart as possible. I have always supported developers by buying them a beer now and then and I think many more (if not every) Homey users should as well…!


You got it completly wrong :-)… Basic apps like maybe Hue, Shelly should be developed by Athom. That guarantees that these apps are always up to date. In no way I want to restrict somebody to develop apps. I am not a programmer so I just see it from a commercial way. People new to this maybe have a better feeling if they see the Athom brand at the apps and than buy the Homey. I don´t know how many people work at Athom and how high the production and development costs are for a Homey. From my point of view it is hard to live only from selling the hardware and relying on the community to develop apps. If nobody develops apps they won´t sell any homey. But that is my point and their choice. So I thing the developers should earn fair money. But as stated I don´t know how much time it costs create an app and to keep it up to date. But 0,40 cent for the developer , from my point of view, is not enough.

Does it? I actualy doubt that. Have you ever compared Athom’s Hue app to Johan’s Hue app for example?


I wouldn’t mind paying a couple of euro’s for an app. (Max 5 euro’s) For bigger apps like Shelly i would pay max 10 euro’s.
As long it’s not on monthly basis.

We also pay for apps on the appstore and Google playstore…

I understand why developers want something for there work. They put a lot of time in it. I think buying them a beer isnt done by a lot of people.


No…not really… you mean the Hue without the bridge one?? WIll test it and check…as I have an issue with one Hue lamp so maybe it solves it :-)… but if an app is working I must confess it is okay for me… never mess around in a good running system. You must not misunderstand me. I thought it was an open discussion and I stated my point of view…maybe more from a commercial way with no heartblood.

And may I ask what you expect when for example Athom creates a new SDK version, or Shelly makes changes to devices?

Completly agree.