Open source products sometimes are meet with a certain scepticism. Maybe even quite understandably so - normally you get what you pay for. And since most open source products are available free of charge, one may apply the aforementioned reasoning and think open source is not worth anything.
But nothing could be further from the truth. A large part of the open source products are "bought and paid" - either through specific projects or more indirectly via sponsorships.
Of course there is also a part of the products, which are developed people who feels very dedicated to a certain project and therefore puts a lot of free hours into it. Are their qualifications on par with their dedication then the result are often highly innovative and professional products.
Which ever model is in use depends partly on the project, but often the development ends up being done by a mix of the two types of resources. Many of the large and successful open source products started out as a wish among a small group of dedicated developers. A wish to "make something better" than what is available. Over time, as the project grows in size and has proven its worth (and thusly gained support from companies providing professional support for it), then the share of "paid" resources increases.
But independent of the background and starting point, all open source product have one thing in common: the source is open and is available to anyone. And this is the driving force behind our commitment to open source.
As programmers, the open source allows us to see behind the facade of the various products. For the film buffs, you can compare it to how Neo, the hero from the movie The Matrix, towards the end of the movie is able to see the codes behind The Matrix and thus control it.
That the problem is not just a Hollywood fantasy, can be seen from the number of law suits claiming that Microsoft hides certain information about Windows from others and thus gains an unfair advantage in relation to their competitors when it comes to writing applications for Windows.
With open source products the whole issue is avoided. Given the right skill, having access to the source code lets one understand the inner workings of the products, to evaluate them, develop them further and even fix bugs.
And here at CodeDroids we have the necessary skills to take advantage of the benefits of open source, and we spend resources on evaluating the continues stream of relevant open source products that keeps appearing.
And it is necessary to evaluate the products. This is no different from non-open products - there are good and bad products, open source or not. But with open source products it is possibly to get behind the "marketing cloud" and make ones own judgement.
This is an ever ongoing process as new and interesting products surfaces all the time. But not all of them reaches a level of functionality and quality that we want them to be at before we will include them in our tool box. When we include an open source product in our tool box we know it is product that we can recommend and we can provide professional support for.
While you seldom pay a license-fee for an open source product, you should of course expect time to install it, set it up and configure it, and possibly adapt it to your specific needs. This is no different from commercial products.
But as the very least you save the initial license fee. You may instead want to spend the money on optimizing the solution to better suit your needs.
So in short, you either get a cheaper solution or a better one. And we would not be surprised if you actually ends up with a both better and cheaper solution by choosing open source products.