Since VeloViewer began a couple of years ago the hosting costs have just about been funded by your very kind donations. As time has passed however, the costs have risen and for the security of my family’s budgeting the time has come to introduce some more structured charging for using the site. From next weekend (8th/9th Nov) a single £9.99 (approx €12.77, US$15.96, AUS$18.34, I’ll soak up any fees) payment will provide you full and continued use of all the VeloViewer goodness for 12 months. A free version will also be available to let people try out the site which will be almost fully functional but only allow you to perform a one-off upload of a limited set of your activities and segments. Hopefully enough to whet the appetite. Anyone who’s donated any amount in the last 12 months will be able to get 12 months PRO access from their donation date.
In the short term no data will be automatically removed behind the scenes. Chances are by Christmas I’ll start a process that will remove data for people who haven’t visited the site in over a year and then work my way down to around 3 months of inactivity. Clearing out this historical data that nobody ever views will speed up the main database queries for everyone else.
For people with data in VeloViewer who haven’t donated in the past (or haven’t notified me if they have) you will be asked to go PRO and given a couple of chances to do so before any data gets truncated so it is very unlikely that any data will need to be reloaded unless you’ve very definitely made the choice not to move to PRO at this time.
I’ve spoken to the guys at Strava and they are 100% behind VeloViewer and what I’m doing with the Freemium model.
Please see the Free vs PRO page to see what is included in the free version..
Benefits to VeloViewer and to you!
I’m sure many of you have experienced the “Strava API rate limit hit!” message when updating at busy times (mostly Sunday evenings and Mondays when you probably should be working) and although the new charging system won’t rule out the odd peak in usage it will certainly go some way to reduce the strain on the Strava API usage for the site. Once PRO is up and running I’ll take a look at the API usage and most likely will be able to speed up the update process for all the users who have paid.
The most costly users in this regard are those that visit once, sync 100’s of activities and 1000’s of segments and then never return to the site. The API rate limits will have taken a beating and for very little site usage. Having this charge in place will hopefully limit the API usage for these one-visit users to just their last 10 activities so their visit won’t impact the VeloViewer experience for everyone else.
The costs of VeloViewer have been entirely funded by donations and out of my own pocket for the past couple of years, I am extremely grateful to everyone who has helped out. If you have donated any amount in the last month (since 8th October 2014) then you should automatically be given a 12 month PRO membership from the date of your donation. If you have donated any amount in the last 12 months (from the 1st Nov 2013), but before that date, then I won’t have captured the required data to set you up automatically so if you email me your PayPal transaction id for your donation and Strava number then I’ll give you your 12 months PRO membership from your donation date. Thanks again to all of you who have donated, without you guys I would have been in a lot of trouble with the wife!
To get your PayPal transaction id then search your emails (if you’ve kept the receipt) or log into PayPal and filter your transactions. Your Strava number is the number you see in all of your VeloViewer URLs.
PRO membership begins
From some point next weekend (8th/9th November) I’ll switch on the free/PRO code. When you visit your update page after that date you will be prompted to sign up. If you choose not to in the week following that first sighting of the payment option then your data will be truncated to what is available in the free version and you will no longer be able to sync any further activities. In order to continue using VeloViewer seamlessly then make sure you make the payment at some point during that week. Your VeloViewer Score will obviously be affected if you don’t move to PRO as it will then only be based on the what segments are remaining.
If you do nothing
After next weekend I will start clearing out the data of none PRO users who haven’t accessed the site for a number of months to free up space and improve the performance of the database.
As explained above, any existing data will be truncated down to the levels of the free version and you will no longer be able to sync any new activities.
New users to the site will be able to perform a one-off sync of the limited set of data and then use the site indefinitely using that data.
Deleting data and attempting to re-upload will remember the previously synced activities and only allow those to be uploaded again.
What’s in the pipeline?
I’ve a number of things on my to-do list but a few important ones that are currently in progress or soon will be are:
- Collaboration with Hells 500 Everesting.
- Allow the creation of your own column and filter combinations on all of the list pages.
- 100 Climb leaderboards to have gender filtering.
- One of the most requested, larger pieces of work is some kind of club summary page.
- VeloViewer club kit. This has been on the cards for some time and I have the design all ready to go. I’m currently in middle of some very exiting conversations with a potential manufacturer so watch this space for more info.
Of course there will lots of other tweaks, great and small, as I find the time.
What happened to “Premium”?
I’ve changed the name to PRO in order to remove any confusion with STRAVA’s own Premium. I should have thought of that earlier but having had a few email conversations with people missing the two up the name change was necessary.