Those of you who have been TradingApp Store subscribers for a while no doubt understand that, while it is very convenient, the Store can be a pain in the butt sometimes! Its technology comes with added restrictions, and does not allow developers nearly the flexibility we have ordinary EasyLanguage, ELD files, etc. This post is about changes coming soon which will greatly enhance the user experience for OF-G products.
A huge proportion of my OF-G support time — well over 50% — is spent addressing issues which only exist on the TradingApp Store. And the time I spend is nothing compared to the time you spend when one of these issues affects you.
Common TradingApp Store Issues
Users Can’t Keep (or Roll Back to) Older Versions
The TradingApp Store only supports one version of a product. So it is impossible to “roll back” after getting an update if there is a bug or something you don’t like in it. And even if you do not update manually, updates can be applied when you update your TradeStation version. This lack of control is very frustrating for users, and is a huge time waster.
TradingApp Store Update Problems
It is not uncommon for users to have to remove and reinstall their product to make it work after an update failure. And sometimes, updates appear as available but will not download.
Products Stuck Authenticating
Authentication is the process by which your TradeStation platform communicates with their servers to confirm your Store subscriptions. It should happen within seconds, but sometimes — especially in non-US market hours — it can take a lot longer.
Store products do not have 100% of EasyLanguage and charting functionality. For example, you cannot save plot style defaults with Store products. So if you want the Insider Bars VWAP line to be dots or display it in the datatip, you cannot set personal indicator defaults like you can ordinarily. And every time you add Insider Bars to the chart, you have to change the same settings. There are a number of issues like this which only exist with Store products.
TradeStation Version Support
TradeStation only allows developers to upload a single version of a product. So if some subscribers have not been able to upgrade to the latest TradeStation versions for one reason or another, products have to be released in the earliest version needed by anyone. Right now there are some significant EasyLanguage improvements which we can’t take advantage of, because the version needed by some subscribers does not support them.
The Store’s monthly-only billing leaves a lot to be desired. Some traders have multiple log-ons, and it is not possible to offer them discounted additional licenses . And non-brokerage TradeStation customers cannot subscribe to a paid product at all!
Unfortunately, monthly billing also translates into a lot of short-term subscribers who are not serious traders. This has become more prevalent since TradeStation began offering free subscription plans recently. You would not believe the number of brand new traders I encounter who expect me to teach them how to trade — soup to nuts — by the end of their first month of subscription! And then at the end of the month, of course they are gone. Meanwhile, I wasted a lot of time that I could have used on educational materials or software improvements benefiting all of you.
Trading is hard enough, without frustrations over technology or accounting matters.
Finding A Better way
For a while now, I have been contemplating a better way. And I am happy to announce that I have a solution. Here is how it will work:
ELD Product Delivery
Right now, products are delivered only via the secure TradingApp Store network. Soon OF-G will also offer delivery via encrypted ELD files.
Exclusive Access Security Key
To use your ELD, you will need a security key. This will be delivered to you by a special private part of the TA Store called Exclusive Access. Based on your your platform ID information, your account will be enabled for the desired product. And if you ever wish to cancel, it’s easy to switch it off without TradeStation being involved.
Absent some unforeseen circumstance, no TradingApp Store updates will ever be required for your security key.
Product updates will be delivered by ELD file, and the same product key will be used for all update versions. So you will have total control over which product version you use, and can switch back and forth as you wish.
New Subscription Options
For those who wish to take advantage of the ELD option, billing will be done outside of your TradeStation account via Paypal. Initially, there will be a quarterly billing plan. It will be priced the same as you are currently paying on the TradingApp Store. For those with more than one TradeStation log-on, discounts will be available for additional licenses. You will not be charged extra for Paypal fees; they will be deducted from OF-G proceeds. After the initial rollout, we will consider longer discounted plans if there is sufficient interest.
What About the Listed TradingApp Store Products?
G Square Pro, Insider Bars and OF-G Suite will continue to be listed on the TradingApp Store for free trials and for month-to-month subscribers. However the month-to-month price is going to go up. If you want to keep your bill the same as you are paying now, you will need to switch to the quarterly billed ELD version.
The objective is to encourage as many subscribers as possible to use the ELD versions, as they will offer a far better user experience. Plus the less time I spend with Store-specific technical support, the more time I have for developing new educational materials and further software updates.
Your Existing Workspaces
When you switch, you will have to update your workspaces and replace your current Store product versions with the ELD versions. This is because the indicator names will be different. But remember this is very easy, using the save defaults and restore defaults options. You just need to have a little overlap in your subscriptions, so you can have both available at the same time. This will be arranged at no additional cost to you.
There is an immense amount of work on the front end to make this all work. I am hoping the ELD versions should be ready to go live by November, but will keep you posted as things progress.
Also, please note that the price increases on the Store versions will not take effect until after you have had ample time to make the switch. I want to make the transition as stress-free as possible for you.
I believe the new options will be a huge step in ease of use and user satisfaction. The only Store issue not addressed is slow authenticating. However TS has told me that this is now an urgent engineering item. So hopefully, it will be fixed very soon.
If you have questions on this new program, please send me an email.