We were recently pitched on a game for teaching arithmetic to children in kindergarten to second grade. It’s an online teaching game from and instead of a one-time price, it costs $13 a month. That’s the new software business model: If you sell a program you only get that revenue one time; if you can sell it for a monthly fee, the revenue can continue for years.

 This strikes as an absurd way to buy software, especially for kids. Thirteen dollars a month comes to more than $150 a year. You can buy the excellent “Math Blaster” program, an oldie but goodie, for about $5 at Amazon.comMia's Math Adventure, or the also excellent “Reader Rabbit Personalized Math” for around $8. “Mia’s Math Adventure,” a relatively new program, sells for less than $20. There’s a trial version of Dreambox Math and we tried it out. It was cute, with tokens you earn and spend at an arcade, but the price is too high.


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