Kitely delays billing by one month

Kitely users will get at least one more free month of hosting, as the company’s billing system has been delayed.

“Due to the time we’d spent improving OpenSim in the last couple of months we are a few weeks behind schedule,” Kitely CEO Ilan Tochner told Hypergrid Business.

The company has been working on building the infrastructure needed to make billing possible, he said.

For example, Kitely regions now load faster, scripts load faster, foreign names are supported, and creator names are preserved with OAR exports.

But users haven’t been waiting for Kitely to get everything done — as of Monday, 1,050 regions were running on demand on the Kitely platform, making it the third-largest grid using the OpenSim server software.

“We’ve had an interesting month with many educators from Asia-Pacific adopting and promoting Kitely, artists creating machinima inside Kitely , and people who have regions on other grids creating Kitely worlds as well,” said Tochner.

For example, Costa Rica-based poet Karima Hoisan has created a machinima series filmed in both Kitely and Second Life.

A still from "Heresy of The Intimate," machinima by Karima Hoisan.

Once billing is in place, regions will cost US 10 cents a month, plus an additional 20 cents an hour for each user that visits, charged in minute increments.

Region owners will have the choice of paying the usage rates themselves, or asking the guests to pay for their own access.

For example, owners of popular freebie shops, museums, or clubs, might want to pass the usage costs onto their visitors. Meanwhile, companies and schools using the regions for meetings and collaboration would probably pick up the costs themselves.

Currently, all other OpenSim grids charge flat region rental fees, typically based on the capacity or usage limits of the region, with no charges imposed on visitors.

The flat monthly fee model makes most economic sense for high-use regions.

However, Kitely’s metered approach makes more sense for situations where regions see little use, or where someone needs to have a lot of regions.

For example, content creators who design hair, clothing, other objects or even entire regions for sale elsewhere would benefit from having unlimited land and prims.

For more on this topic, read: When do cloud-based sims make sense?

Not only do Kitely regions cost just 10 cents a month if they’re not being used, but Kitely also offers instant OAR downloads and uploads, so that users can have their regions to their harddrives, and upload them again when they need them. Once billing is in place, exports will cost 10 Kitely credits — or about 3 cents.



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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China. Follow me on Twitter @MariaKorolov.

4 Responses

  1.' Ilan Tochner says:

    Hi Maria,

    We plan to continue offering a small amount of free Kitely Credits for some time even after we start selling them. This will enable casual users to visit worlds where the world manager has selected that visitors cover their own usage costs.

    That said, our ability to continue doing so over time will depend on the amount of KC that we actually sell and how quickly our user base grows. If people help spread the word about Kitely and we see fast active user growth with good conversion into paying customers it will help us maintain a freemium model going forward.

  2.' Karima Hoisan says:

    I wish Kitely all the success it deserves. It has recently been, and I know will continue to be, a big part of my creative virtual experience. I am spreading the word…believe me:)

  3.' Ilan Tochner says:

    Thank you Karima 🙂

    We are proud to have such a prolific artist as yourself creating so much original content inside Kitely. It's hard to believe just how much you've built from scratch in the short time since you started using Kitely.

  4. @iliveisl says:

    w00t! it's always amazing how much volume a passionate person can create! =)