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High cumulative costs of apps



We really like the Confluence platform.  It gives our teams, service providers and clients an engaging way to share and access product and company information.

However, the cost model of apps is preventing us from using it to its full extent.  We are actively limiting the amount of users that has access to Confluence because each app we install is priced based on the full Confluence user base, even if only one or two users need to use it.  

For example, only one or two users in our teams need to use a Latex plugin to update technical formulae.  No other user, either internal or external even knows that we have something like Latex to write formulae yet we pay for their access just because they are base Confluence users.  

Adding to this is the amount of functionality that is outsourced to 3rd party apps.  Latex being a classic example.  Most modern markdown editors have this included as native functionality, no add-ons, no increased costs.  Yet, with Confluence, even simple functionality that we believe should be native and included, e.g. document review workflows, are outsourced to 3rd party providers.  This makes the cost of deploying a full Confluence solution a bit of a blank cheque and a cost risk for our business.

This is a real problem for us to the extent that we are considering moving to a different platform all together.  Something that will definitely not be optimal since a lot of effort has gone into creating content.  As we grow and onboard more of our service providers and clients, we would however likely have to do this.

Is there a way that we can rather only pay per user of an App instead?  Is this an issue for other users? 


Paul Nel

CEO, 7SecondSolar


Alex Koxaras _Relational_
Community Leader
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Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
May 12, 2023

Hi @Paul Nel 

Unfortunately the answer is no. Currently Atlassian has a policy which dictates that even if you want to use an app for 2 our of XX users, you have to be billed for XX users. The reason (among others) behind this for me is because Atlassian's installation and licensing process doesn't have the functionality to give "app access" to a limited amount of users.

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Stiltsoft support
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Rising Stars are recognized for providing high-quality answers to other users. Rising Stars receive a certificate of achievement and are on the path to becoming Community Leaders.
May 12, 2023

Besides the significant reason mentioned by @Alex Koxaras _Relational_ regarding the specific "app access", there is another difficulty. Let me explain it using one of our apps as an example: we provide macros that help you to filter and aggregate tabular data.

So, let's pretend that some users have access to these macros and some users don't (they don't see them in the macrobrowser and can't insert them on the page). Seems okay. But what to do with the tables that are already wrapped in our macros and reorganized? If the page is available to the users without "app access", what should be shown to them? The result aggregated table? But then it means that these users will be using the app (not directly but nevertheless). Original tables? But they are wrapped in our macros, it is not technically possible to "switch off" these macros for specific users on the fly.

So, there are really more questions than answers. And at the moment the current policy seems reasonable.

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Point taken, but then there should perhaps be a difference between edit and view rates.  Some apps charge as much as $2.50 per user per month but even it is only 50c and I have 200 users, every app will cost $100/month.

I understand there may be technical constraints, for me the question is just whether this is a sustainable model for users.

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Alex Koxaras _Relational_
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
May 13, 2023

@Paul Nel that would be a lovely change in my opinion!

Like Ms_ Hiller likes this

This limitation is keeping me from using any apps at all right now. If there were distinct user roles, then it would be much easier to limit app permission to only the needed users. As it is, the app costs add up very quickly.

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