Interesting discussion. Since my name has been mentioned it is just right i come in.
As a plugin developer i can tell you that developing plugins is really time consuming. Then there is the support, new feature requests, and bug fixes afterwards.
There are several personal reasons my current plugins are free and you’re likely going to see me releasing a number of free plugins as long as i the find time (new one dropping tonight ).
But note that i’m not doing this as a job. I’m a (phd) student so i do this on my spare time. Also i personally don’t like the current plugin subscription model but i can understand why bubble will choose this model. For one, it keeps developers on their toes and make them responsible to their customers. If you’re not providing support and not fixing bugs users can just uninstall and go with a better alternative. So there are arguments to make on both sides, i.e. subscription vs one-time.
As you may all know, many platforms are charging anywhere from $50 - $100 per hour for bubble consultation. A plugin development can take over 100 hrs. So do the maths and see what is a fair price to pay for a plugin.
But i believe as the bubble community grows prices of plugins and templates will drop accordingly and both developers and bubble users will benefit.
There is a reason why people spend hours contributing to opensource projects. A lot of these plugins are based on these opensource libraries. Some of us can afford to spend hours upon hours creating free plugins to help grow the bubble ecosystem, but i don’t think it is fair to expect that everyone does same because to some people this is their job.