amuck-landowner

Billing system discussion

jhadley

New Member
Verified Provider
I had a discussion going on LET before the hack and I wanted to restart the discussion as it's extremely relevant right now.

WHMCS and HostBill (and also ClientExec and Ubersmith) have recently done a lot to scare their customers. I've got a billing system that's fairly solid and I've decided to make it my primary focus to make it as good as possible. I've found some funding, hired additional developers and am working with UI designers to create something that really stands out, based on a community-driven ethos of unencrypted code, low prices, frequent updates and generally listening to what people want.

To give you a quick summary, I've pushed forward the following features:

 - Multiple currencies

 - Multiple tax bands

 - cPanel and SolusVM integration

 - Google Checkout, 2Checkout, Amazon SimplePay and Stripe integration

 - A better order form

 - A REST API, and iPhone and Android apps

 - Translation files

 - Reports page

 - UI redesign

As well as a new website.

In the last discussion the general consensus was that
 

Ivan

New Member
Verified Provider
Billr is a great name. Looking forward to see some screenshots, though  :)
 
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wdq

Quade
Maybe make scripts that can import data from WHMCS/HostBill, and offer some sort of refugee discount. 
 

RootNerds

New Member
Verified Provider
Well, reporting is a must for a billing system. Detailed forecasts and such are a must have in each billing system.

Then Tax and a little bit customization for every country (for example Europe, have different Invoice numbers for unpaid and paid invoices).

In general, I probably wouldn't switch to a billing system with less functionality than WHMCS. Across our 3 WHMCS installations, I used every function at least once...
 

Pmadd

New Member
Love the name, it suits the product. If I ever had a use for a billing system I'd surely try it.
 

matt[scrdspd]

SecuredSpeed
Verified Provider
Billr seems like a pretty decent name. It seems to be the name of an existing iPhone app tho, not sure if that bothers you or not.

Maybe make scripts that can import data from WHMCS/HostBill, and offer some sort of refugee discount. 
This. If you want to get adoption of this software you will probably have to have a good migration system for existing WHMCS users.
 

jhadley

New Member
Verified Provider
I'll try and get import scripts added as well. A refugee discount would be nice but the software is already very cheap. Would a small one be enough to influence your decision?

It seems to be the name of an existing iPhone app tho, not sure if that bothers you or not.

It's not such a problem for the web app, but it could be now that a mobile app is in the pipeline.
 
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rds100

New Member
Verified Provider
@jhadley so what do you think, how much would the whole project cost? I mean if it somehow becomes crowd funded and opensourced.
 

jhadley

New Member
Verified Provider
Doesn't seem unreasonable or impossible. Maybe this would be a good project to crowd fund, for the benefit of everyone. Providers can get rid of the horrible WHMCS, customers can be more relaxed about their details beeing stored in a more secure system, etc.
I'm open to this idea but I don't think it'll happen frankly.
 

jarland

The ocean is digital
I'm watching with a lot of interest now that you're talking about panel integrations. I like the name, always have. The ios app developer can deal with it ;)
 

RootNerds

New Member
Verified Provider
I mean if it somehow becomes crowd funded and opensourced.
That would definitively be great! There are enough closed-source systems out there on the market. As @jhadley said he wants to be different than the other systems anyway, this would be a great way to go!  
 

HalfEatenPie

The Irrational One
Retired Staff
I'd like to request that instead of doing a one-off payment system to actually have payments required for upgrades and such.  

Why?

Because if I want to purchase a billing system I'd like to know that it'd be around long enough to constantly push out new updates and defend against new threats.  I feel like with one-off purchasing schemes are a great idea for the customer, but doesn't guarantee your continued investment in it's security and updates.  When it's a crucial piece of software that manages your clients, your income, etc. then you want to know that it'll be around for a while. 

My two cents.  I mean I'm interested in what you're bringing to the table, but I'd like to constantly send you money to ensure future development continues.  I mean everyone has to eat ;) 
 

netnub

New Member
Pff, if I was you I'd charge $10/mo constant and do lifetime licenses for $200 unbranded, etc. you'll make a killing of a profit.
 

jhadley

New Member
Verified Provider
Pff, if I was you I'd charge $10/mo constant and do lifetime licenses for $200 unbranded, etc. you'll make a killing of a profit.
Honestly, if I can make enough money to sustain the project, plus a little for me, and give people a great product and a good reason to switch, that'll be far more rewarding :)
 

Shados

Professional Snake Miner
Because if I want to purchase a billing system I'd like to know that it'd be around long enough to constantly push out new updates and defend against new threats.
 

+1 to this. Offering a 'lifetime' license is fine and all, but consider having a low-cost regular payment option as well - both because it means you're a bit more likely to continue working on it in the future, and also because it gives people a way to try it out with minimal initial cost to them.
 

jhadley

New Member
Verified Provider
+1 to this. Offering a 'lifetime' license is fine and all, but consider having a low-cost regular payment option as well - both because it means you're a bit more likely to continue working on it in the future, and also because it gives people a way to try it out with minimal initial cost to them.
Trouble with that is I would need to encrypt the source and protect the software.
 
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