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SimMarket Installer Developer Policy Update

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Several developers have taken to Facebook to express their unhappiness with some recent changes regarding the SimMarket installer policy. The unhappiness seems particularly aimed at a recent change to the SimMarket policy regarding future updates and simulator support, and was understood by some that future updates for SimMarket products will no longer remain free of charge. We have asked SimMarket for a statement on the policy changes, and received a very comprehensive answer that explains quite well what has changed for developers, of which we have summarised the important and relevant parts.

To begin with, the SimMarket installer is a service that SimMarket offers to developers so they don’t have to make their own installer. You have probably seen and/or used the SimMarket installer, since it’s quite common for developers that publish their products through SimMarket. However, this installer service is entirely optional and developers are also free to create their own installers for products. Installers are a complementary SimMarket service for new products, as are updated installers with hot fixes shortly after release. Furthermore, updating a product by supplying a patch or .zip file is free.

When a developer creates an update of their scenery due to, for example, a flight simulator version change, they can choose to sell this as a new product (for example: Prepar3D v5 compatible product). As long as this product is a paid product with a minimum upgrade fee of €5 for existing customers, the SimMarket installer remains free for the developer. The minimum fee of €5 applies to these products due to the commission (30%) that goes to SimMarket itself. This is the minimum amount required for the services they provide, such as server upkeep, personnel costs, marketing, etc.

These rules have all previously been established, and are not what the developer unhappiness is about. A new addition to the installer policy sees the commission that goes to SimMarket increase with 1%, every time a developer asks SimMarket to create a new, free installer to include additional flight simulator versions. This would mean that a product that currently works on P3Dv4 and would receive a free update to P3Dv5 would have a 31% SimMarket commission, and if on top of that Microsoft Flight Simulator would get added (as an example), the commission would rise to 32%.

This new addition is what has developers, and in turn some members of the community, worried about the future of product updates that may or may not include additional flight simulator versions. It remains yet to be seen how developers will respond to the updated installer policy, and if this potential increase in costs will be charged to the customer. But the statement provided by SimMarket certainly does bring a lot more nuance on upgrade pricing, which has been a debated topic in the community as developers are considering different update strategies to support current and future simulator updates.

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PILOT’S Releases Flight Sim Global Ultimate NG 2020

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PILOT'S has released their latest in their long-line of Flight Sim Global Ultimate series. NG 2020 brings the latest data to deliver mesh scenery to the whole global. Mesh acts as the wireframe under the landclass and textures in the sim to create more realistic terrain, mountain formations and more. https://youtu.be/Gn0VuSpUdJc When you're flying around, the PILOT'S Flight Sim Global
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All IRIS Flight Simulation Software Free Until June

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Developer IRIS Flight Simulation Software has announced that they will be making all of their products free until June 1st 2020. In a statement on their Facebook page, the team said that many flight simmers have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and wanted to support the community where possible. That support comes in the offering all of their products free
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Flight Sim Development Group Releases King Shaka International Airport

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A mere day after the surprise announcement, Flight Sim Development Group (FSDG) has released King Shaka International Airport (FALE). The airport, opened in 2010, serves the city of Durban in South Africa. It has flights to many other South African cities, as well as a few in the Middle-East. The scenery comes with a highly detailed rendition of the airport,
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SamScene3D Releases Seoul City WOW for FSX & P3D

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SamScene3D has released their Seoul City WOW for FSX and Prepar3D V4 and V5. The scenery features the Seoul City landmarks, custom autogen and seasonal textures. The scenery is deemed to have been optimized for the best framerates. It is compatible with most third-party add-on airports of the Seoul area, and with the Orbx add-ons covering the area. Seoul is
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UK2000 Scenery Wants to Develop Isle of Man

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UK2000 Scenery has announced that they want to developer Isle of Man scenery.

In a brief Facebook post, the team indicated that they are looking at which airport to bring next after the release of their updated Glasgow Airport. The team are toying with the idea of either updating Manchester or Gatwick, along with the possibility of the Isle of Man.

The Isle of Man is sorely missed from UK airports in Prepar3D, with Orbx having promised to deliver on them after the purchase of Earth Simulations in 2018.

We’ll keep an eye on any progress updates in the mean time.

Image source: JetPhotos (Matty Cooper)

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Sierrasim Simulation Releases New York Stewart International for Prepar3D V4

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Sierrasim Simulation has released New York Stewart International Airport for both Prepar3D V4 and FSX. New York Stewart International Airport is a public/military airport in Orange County, New York. The airport was originally built in the 1930s for cadets attending West Point to learn aviation. In the recent years, Stewart International Airport has into a significant passenger airport for the
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RFSceneryBuilding Announces Frankfurt-Hahn Airport

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Scenery developers RFSceneryBuilding has announced that they are going to actively develop Frankfurt-Hahn Airport (EDFH). Whilst not confirmed, based on their previous releases, we assume for FSX and P3D. Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is a focus airport for low-cost carriers such as Ryanair and Wizz Air all with frequent services to destinations such as Rome, Tenerife, Tuzla and more. No further details
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SimBitWorld A Pilot’s Life Updated to Version 1.5.1

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A small update for users on SimBitWorld's A Pilot's Life has been released. Version 1.5.1 features an all-new dark mode, an airline leaderboard and also various other fixes. The incremental update also fixes possible X-Plane issues when on the resume report, along with disabling the progress bar whilst not in flight. Finally, the decimals in the money report have also
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TFDi Design Updates their Boeing 717

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TFDi has finally released the long awaited update of their Boeing 717 for FSX and P3D. This updates contains fixes for the crash to desktop that occurred when switching between internal and external views, and another fix for people who have more than one active graphic cards in their use computer, where some graphics would flicker. The TFDi 717 will
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