Author Topic: Annual license fee?  (Read 824 times)

Offline Paul Skelcher

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 30
    • View Profile
    • photography
Annual license fee?
« on: November 23, 2018, 09:41:12 AM »
Recently I emailed a one-liner about PM's "upgraded license" Black Friday Sale offer and within an hour received a reply from Andrew confirming my license type, available activations, lack of need for upgrade, a new license key and more; a prompt detailed response, the service all too often lacking in so called "customer service".
In the past I, probably others too, have been guilty of using the forum for queries I should have searched, also queries resulting from my laziness concerning the basics of PM. Others routinely ask complex questions that merit, and get, complex replies.  All these are often answered personally by Kirk, quickly and clearly, in his way that makes you feel he is your personal guide. Again, real customer service, through the forums and direct contact, that has real costs in time, money, expertise.
The upcoming catalog will inevitably generate extra work for Camera Bits staff and our expectations will be the same  level of service we are lucky enough to get with PM, but this is just one benefit.

My point here, that PM is, and I suspect the catalog will be, such a useful, virtually irreplaceable, constantly updated and improved tool with unheard of support that maybe Camera Bits should start charging an annual license fee.
Mostly no-one will sneeze at, say, $50 a year in addition to initial license fees. The non-sneezers being those who appreciate the increasing costs of doing business and depend on the utility of PM in maintaining a fast, easy, flexible workflow.
Once any moaning and groaning  sneezers step back and recognize the importance of PM in their day to day business, conversion should be a no-brainer. Nothing worthwhile in life is free, nor should be.

The last thing I want to see is Camera Bits in financial trouble, selling out and us losing the stability of a well established  reliable product together with the high level of support we all enjoy.
Very few companies now (understandably) rely on a (modest) one-time license fee then offer free never-ending support and updates as a sustainable business model.
It's too easy for a creator to perceive and attribute a lesser value to his product than the customer who constantly  benefits from it, but the cost of a such a product/service as PM should be determined, like an RM stock image, by its real value to the customer.

I understand that Camera Bits neither needs nor wants my advice in its business dealings; still, consider this my show of support for the present and future health of Camera Bits.


Offline robert s.

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 97
    • View Profile
Re: Annual license fee?
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2018, 08:35:54 AM »
No! I think when going this way, many will not upgrade to PM 6 and aquiring new customers wil be more difficult than without the annual fee.

I am waiting since years for PM6 , but I can also live with PM5 again for years. PM is no software for my daylie business, I use it just a few days per month.

Everyone who wants to support CameraBits more than one Upgrade fee, should feel free to give them some money one or more times a year.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2018, 08:38:49 AM by robert s. »

Offline Odd Skjaeveland

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 103
    • View Profile
Re: Annual license fee?
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2018, 10:45:04 PM »
... I stopped using ANY adobe products due to that-
... I'll have none of that, under ANY scenario.

You know, back in the day, some users apparently thought Camera Bits were practicing a subscription model for Photo Mechanic, probably because a payment was good for one year which was also, more or less, the time between new versions.

Interestingly, licensing and a future catalog feature were both touched upon in an interview Jason Odell and Rick Walker did with Dennis and Kirk from Camera Bits in one of "The image doctors" podcasts.  Here is a link to it:  The interview lasts about 40 minutes, starting at time 1:45 into the podcast. It is mostly about PM and its existing features, but a future catalog feature comes up at 26:18 and the licensing model at 38:00.

Anyone who cares to study the history (release notes) of the long lasting version 5.0 should acknowledge that CB could have bumped the version code to 5.1, 5.2... and charged for upgrades along the way. The current build of version 5.0 is not that old/stale/dead version some commenters have concluded by just looking at the 5.0 release date in their calendar.

I would probably accept paying CB an annual fee to stay current rather than paying per version upgrade. PM depends on CB being profitable, and I expect CB will charge for upgrades 6.1, 6.2,..., about once per year.

Subscriptions are not inherently bad, it depends on the subscription model and the fine text in the subscription agreement. The interesting part in my end is what I'm left with if I decide to break out. That is where you'll find the evil in some subscription models in use.

Odd S.

Offline robert s.

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 97
    • View Profile
Re: Annual license fee?
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2018, 05:02:19 AM »
My problem with subscriptions is, that Iam using PM not for business. Last year Ihaven't worked for nearly 10 months becaus of a bad medical diagnose. So I would have payed for these months without using the software. An when the subscription ends. I have a softwahre which doesn't work anymore. So subscriptions may be good for business customers. For private use it is a bad way to go.