Claris Inc. deprecated the FileMaker runtime feature in version 14 and recently announced its removal for the upcoming version 19 in May 2020. If you still depend on building runtimes, it's time to consider moving yourself and your customers in a new direction.
You can of course continue for a few years with FileMaker Pro 18 Advanced to create and deploy runtimes. But it is time to tell your clients that this won't work forever. A security policy change, a newer version of MacOS or Windows OS, or a switch in CPU architecture to ARM could stop the applications from working. Other changes like a new codec for images, some new web protocols or other features will not be supported in runtimes and probably a change in future OS could affect you badly causing crashes on launch or when working with some features.
To continue distributing your solution with FileMaker, please check the options:
- You can continue with the runtimes until they fall apart.
- You can ask user to migrate to an iPad or iPhone and use FileMaker Go with your solution.
- You could sell the database alone and let your users get a copy of FileMaker themselves.
That may be a good thing to let your customers know: When the runtime stops and they need to use the applications, they could buy a FM Pro themselves and contact you to help to move the database.
- You may be able to join the SBA program and bundle FileMaker Pro with your software. This may enable you to sell a standard solution for more than one seat and provide a server version. As you get a discount for FileMaker licenses, this could be a bit cheaper then using regular licenses.
And there was a discussion at the conferences that in future FileMaker may offer a program to buy license packages and split them up for customers in need of less then 5 seats for a server.
- You could offer clients the new FileMaker Cloud to host the solution if they don't want to host themselves and they have at least 4 or 5 users. This may be a great way forward for clients, who don't want to maintain a server and still want to use the solution with multiple users and enjoy proper security and backups.
So you may offer people to license your solution and use it with FileMaker Go or their own copy of FileMaker Pro. You may offer for 2 or more users your solution as SBA version or with 4 or 5 as Cloud solution. Joining FBA program or register with a FileMaker distributor is a good way to increase your margin and receive discounts for buying licenses in bigger quantities.
For example you can offer 1 seat for e.g. $99, 2 or more for something like $20/month, optional with server for 5 or more and of course the cloud solution for something like $50 per month. But you have to find a way forward which makes Claris happy, yourself happy (with a good margin) and your customers happy. If your solution is not worth the price asked, this may require you to let a few customers go.