The Ignition Module Marketplace offers a buying experience that is unprecedented in the industrial automation software market. With a few clicks, consumers can now find and download modules that work seamlessly with Ignition by Inductive Automation™ — and use them on a trial basis before buying. Beyond this, the Module Marketplace gives users the exciting ability to develop and sell their own Ignition modules.
The Ignition Module Marketplace launch on March 4 included the full set of current core modules for Ignition and a few new modules from IA Labs, a newly formed development group within Inductive Automation that will explore new ways to use the Ignition platform. Several of these IA Labs modules, such as the PDF Viewer Module, are free.
Perhaps the most exciting aspect of the new Ignition Module Marketplace is that it’s open to third-party module developers. Enterprising individuals with expertise in a specific vertical market, knowledge of Java and an interest in developing software can now share their solutions with the global Ignition community.
"The Ignition Module Marketplace enables domain experts to build on an established platform, leveraging their knowledge to deliver a market-ready product in a small fraction of the time it would take otherwise," said Colby Clegg, co-director of software engineering for Inductive Automation. "On the other end, users benefit by gaining access to that knowledge."
Those who want to become a Module Marketplace developer need to go to marketplace.inductiveautomation.com and register as a developer. They will need to fill out a company application, and then download, sign and send in a Developer Agreement PDF document. Once Inductive Automation approves the account, the developer can log in and upload modules.
To upload modules to the store, developers need to go to the Module Marketplace and sign in to Module Management, request a new module ID and describe the module they plan to create. Once they receive an ID for their module from Inductive Automation, they can upload it. All modules will be tested, verified and approved by Inductive Automation before being added to the store. The revenues from module sales are split 70/30: The developer receives 70%, and Inductive Automation receives 30%.
"One of the surprising challenges of writing software is that only about 10% of the work has to do with the software’s core function," said Carl Gould, co-director of software engineering for Inductive Automation. "The other 90% goes toward engineering your product to be upgradable, installable, user-friendly, configurable and so on. The real magic of the Module Marketplace is that, as a developer, you can focus on your area of expertise, and then you can insert that software into the Ignition software platform. It’s a win–win because developers get the platform, the market and the store, while our customers benefit from a much wider base of domain-specific expertise."
Inductive Automation will provide additional information for module developers soon. To learn more, watch the Module Marketplace Launch Webinar or call (916) 456-1045.