1Password is (way) more expensive with subscriptions

EDIT: Why I’ve written this story

At least for some users. Let’s have a look at the total cost of ownership (TCO).


I just went through my e-mails for purchase receipts.

  • $40 – Single user license, Jan 2010
  • $9 – 1Password for iPhone, May 2013
  • $50 – 1Password 4 for Mac, September 2014

That’s a total of $99, and it’s been 90 months since the first purchase. Or 77 months since the subscription service was made available. So that’s $1.10/mo, or $1.28/mo if you don’t count my holding out after the subscription announcement.

So $3/mo would be a little over double.

  • TCO:
    • Standalone: 99$
    • Subscription: 77*(36/12) = 231$
  • Change: *2.33 (+133%)

Nicolas Furno:

Pour prendre mon cas, j’utilise 1Password depuis 2008 et sur toute cette période, il y a eu quelques mises à jour payantes à comptabiliser, entre 60 et 70 € environ pour les deux plateformes.

Si j’avais payé un abonnement pendant toutes ces années, utiliser 1Password m’aurait coûté environ 360 €. Contre environ 120 € en licences perpétuelles, et encore, uniquement en achetant toutes les mises à jour.

  • TCO:
    • Standalone: 120€
    • Subscription: 360€
  • Change: *3 (+200%)

Michael Tsai:

I most recently rebought the Mac version of 1Password for $20 from the Mac App Store in 2011 (see comment), and I bought the iOS version for $8 in 2012. Since then there have been zero paid updates. My license, amazingly, is still valid. Now, the individual subscription is $36/year.

  • TCO:
    • Standalone: 20 + 8 = 28$ (Mac version was discounted when Michael bought it)
    • Subscription: 6*36 = 216$
  • Change: *7.71 (+671%)

Gopal Sharma:

I’ve been a 1Password user for over 5 years now. During that time, I’ve spent around $75 on 1Password for Mac, and iOS. I use Dropbox to sync my passwords, but I don’t pay for Dropbox specifically for 1Password.

If you think about the total cost of ownership over 5 years, with 1Password’s subscription model, which is $2.99 per month (billed annually), that’s $180. That is more than 2 times my previous total cost of ownership!

  • TCO:
    • Standalone: 75$
    • Subscription: 180$
  • Change: *2.4 (+124%)

I’ve bought 1Password on macOS in 2010 and on iOS in 2011 and I’ve bought all major updates since then. Unfortunately, I’ve lost the receipts of my 1Password purchases, but I think my numbers are somewhere in between Gopal’s and Nicolas’s numbers. Let’s say I’ll face a *2.4 increase if I go with the subscription.

If you are a 1Password user and want me to complete this list with your own numbers, or if you saw someone sharing his.her numbers online, feel free to add a comment or to contact me. I’ll update this post as new data will flow.

(I’m especially interested in people who bought the Windows version in addition to the macOS and iOS versions, but I welcome all data!)

31 October 2017 11h26: Correcting a typo in the title (thanks to Jim Rea for noticing)


2 thoughts on “1Password is (way) more expensive with subscriptions

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