Autodesk license costs options – summary 2

This is a revised version of the Autodesk license costs options – summary post, where I examined various payment options for CAD software and compared them with the cost of staying on your Autodesk maintenance contract long-term. This version is based on limited new information from Autodesk. While this post can be read alone, to better understand the context you may wish to check out that summary and the preceding posts in the series:

1. Autodesk license costs options 1 & 2 – stay on maintenance, subscription now
2. Autodesk license costs options 3, 4 & 5 – bait and switch
3. Autodesk license costs options 6 to 10 – abandon maintenance or Autodesk
4. Autodesk license costs options – summary

In this post, I will examine the validity of the various assumptions I have made; lay out all the data with best/worst options lists; provide combined graphs; and sum up. All of these sections have been revised based on new information.

Assumptions

Because Autodesk still isn’t telling customers all they need to know in order to make a rational choice, I’ve had to make some assumptions in order to work out the relative viabilities of the various options. Here, I’ll lay those assumptions out and explain why I made them. Some of them are very soundly based, others less so.

  1. Autodesk will continue to make maintenance available long-term. This has been repeated by Autodesk people at all levels and is currently pledged in writing on Autodesk’s web site. On the other hand, Autodesk has said one thing and done the other on multiple occasions, so who knows? Autodesk is also making noises about how terrible it is for the poor thing to have to go on operating in the same way that has made it billions for decades. I certainly can’t promise that Autodesk’s promise is worth the pixels it’s written on. It’s safe to assume that Autodesk will do all sorts of nasty things to maintenance customers over the next few years, but I’m relying on our fortitude in standing up to that.
  2. The maintenance price increases of 5%, 10% and 20% are cumulative, resulting in actual price increases of 5%, 15.5% and 38.6%. This has been confirmed by Autodesk here.
  3. Following that set of increases, the following year (2020) will see an increase of between 0% and 20% and the year after that (2021) will see a 0% increase. This is based on the figures shown in Autodesk’s example here. I’ve provided option 1c that assumes the best-case scenario (0% + 0%) and option 1d that assumes the worst-case scenario (20% + 0%).
  4. Following that set of increases, from 2022 the cost of maintenance will increase by another cumulative 10% per year. I have adjusted this downwards from 20% on the basis that Autodesk’s example shows a total maximum increase of 20% from 2020 to 2022. In reality, anything could happen, and Autodesk isn’t telling us.
  5. The dollar figures shown in Autodesk’s examples are accurate. There are some minor discrepancies between Autodesk’s quoted percentages and dollar amounts. Where dollar amounts are available, I have used those.
  6. Subscription (rental) prices will be frozen until after 2019. I’ve assumed this because Autodesk will want to keep subscription looking good in comparison to maintenance while it tries to persuade people to come on board.
  7. Subscription prices will increase 10% per year from 2020. Another guess. I’m pretty sure the price will keep going up, and it may be worse than this if Autodesk gets a sizeable portion of existing users tied in by then. Autodesk will rack up prices as high as it thinks it will get away with. My 10% assumption, if it’s low, will make subscription look better than it really is in my comparisons.
  8. The offered 60%/55%/50% discount on subscription will be maintained for three years from the point of changeover, not three years from now. That appears to be implied in Autodesk’s statements, and a three-year lock-in appears to be a standard Autodesk marketing technique.
  9. Following the three-year lock-in, the subscription cost will then change to 16% more than maintenance. This has been adjusted down from the 60% that was based on an apparent transcription error in an Autodesk earnings call transcript. A corrected version is available here: Autodesk (ADSK) Q4 2017 Results – Earnings Call Transcript. Incidentally, the statement that was initially attributed to Amal Hanspal is now reported to be from Andrew Anagnost.
  10. This special subscription cost of 16% over maintenance will be based on the original pre-increase maintenance price. This has been stated by Autodesk and roughly corresponds to Autodesk’s example figures. This differs from my original assumption that the increase would be based on higher and ever-increasing costs.
  11. The 16% premium subscription price will remain in place permanently, subject to normal percentage increases. This is heavily implied by Autodesk’s promise that customers who convert to subscription in 2017/8/9 will “keep this discounted pricing, which will be lower than maintenance plan renewal pricing and far below the cost of a new subscription”. This is described as a “guarantee”, but it’s rubbery. Don’t expect to see it written into a binding contract with figures.
  12. The 16% premium subscription price will increase at 10% per year. This is a guess and Autodesk can increase it by 100% a year if it feels like it. However, I’ve used 10% a year for everything else, so I’m keeping this assumption consistent with the others.
  13. For option 8, Autodesk will offer maintenance customers who switch over in 2022 a 50% discount on subscription, locked in for 3 years. Autodesk has made very similar offers over the last year or so. I’m assuming such offers will continue to arise from time to time, but there are no guarantees.
  14. For option 8a, Autodesk will offer maintenance customers who switch over in 2022 a permanent 50% discount on subscription. If Autodesk gets as desperate in 2022 as it is now to convert people to subscription, such an offer could be made. Or not. In case it is, I’ve included the numbers.
  15. Bricsys will continue to provide perpetual license and maintenance options. I’m highly confident in this one. Autodesk’s rental-only move is manna from heaven to Bricsys, and the availability of perpetual licenses is a big drawcard for disaffected Autodesk customers. Bricsys won’t throw away that competitive advantage.
  16. For options 9 and 10, BricsCAD purchase and maintenance costs will rise by 10% a year (compound). Another guess. Based on the Bricsys price history to date, 10% may be on the high side. However, because Bricsys prices are so much lower than Autodesk ones, an error in this assumption will have a much smaller effect than errors in the Autodesk price assumptions.

Some or all of the above assumptions could be wrong. Autodesk has been invited to replace this necessary speculation with information and is welcome to do so. As with all content on my blog, I actively encourage being corrected on any factual inaccuracies.

Data

If you want to examine the full set of data and/or make adjustments to the values, assumptions or calculations, here is the updated Excel spreadsheet I used, AutoCADSubscriptionCostComparison2017-03-17.xlsx. I suggest you discard any earlier versions of the spreadsheet, including AutoCADSubscriptionCostComparison2017-03-16-1.xlsx that was incorrectly linked in this post for the first few hours of its life. Note that in this version of the spreadsheet, I have used bold to indicate the figures that are known to be correct.

The following tables show the cost winners and losers after the first three, five and ten years based on one North American AutoCAD license with a 2016 maintenance cost of $545 and (late) 2016 subscription cost of $1470. All values are in US dollars.

Three years
Average Annual Cost Option
0 Option 0 – drop maintenance, keep using AutoCAD
0 Option 6 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2020
0 Option 7 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022
0 Option 8 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (3-year 50% discount)
0 Option 8a – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (permanent 50% discount)
0 Option 10 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance in 2020
474 Option 9 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance
570 Option 3 – subscription in 2017
631 Option 4 – subscription in 2018
643 Option 5 – subscription in 2019
648 Option 1c – stay on maintenance (0% increase 2020/2021)
648 Option 1d – stay on maintenance (20% increase 2020, 0% 2021)
1470 Option 2 – subscription now
Five years
Average Annual Cost Option
0 Option 0 – drop maintenance, keep using AutoCAD
0 Option 7 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022
0 Option 8 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (3-year 50% discount)
0 Option 8a – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (permanent 50% discount)
303 Option 10 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance in 2020
416 Option 9 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance
607 Option 3 – subscription in 2017
650 Option 4 – subscription in 2018
679 Option 6 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2020
680 Option 5 – subscription in 2019
689 Option 1c – stay on maintenance (0% increase 2020/2021)
749 Option 1d – stay on maintenance (20% increase 2020, 0% 2021)
1561 Option 2 – subscription now
Ten years
Average Annual Cost Option
0 Option 0 – drop maintenance, keep using AutoCAD
383 Option 10 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance in 2020
439 Option 9 – BricsCAD Pro with maintenance
597 Option 8a – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (permanent 50% discount)
769 Option 3 – subscription in 2017
790 Option 4 – subscription in 2018
805 Option 5 – subscription in 2019
848 Option 1c – stay on maintenance (0% increase 2020/2021)
871 Option 8 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022 (3-year 50% discount)
979 Option 1d – stay on maintenance (20% increase 2020, 0% 2021)
1195 Option 7 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2022
1534 Option 6 – abandon maintenance, subscription in 2020
1975 Option 2 – subscription now

Graphs

These graphs show all 13 options together.

Annual Costs

Cumulative costs:

Average annual costs over time


Feel free to mess with the spreadsheet to produce the graphs that interest you. If you hide rows, those options won’t show up in the graphs.

Summary

Based on this revised set of figures and assumptions, the following conclusions can be drawn:

  1. The cheapest thing to do, with zero direct cost, is drop maintenance and keep using your perpetual license as long as it still does what you need.
  2. The next cheapest thing to do is switch to using BricsCAD. You’re well ahead of anything that involves sticking with Autodesk by a very significant margin. As a bonus, even if you stop paying anything to anyone you will end up with perpetual license of both AutoCAD and BricsCAD, and that’s two more than Autodesk wants you to have.
  3. Delaying a switch to BricsCAD won’t save you a lot of money.
  4. The financial implications of abandoning maintenance for a few years and then signing up for subscription are uncertain. It will depend on what Autodesk decides to do in the future in terms of offers to encourage people to sign up. If an offer similar to the current one arrives in five years, you’ll be well ahead. If not, you’re well behind.
  5. Abandoning maintenance for a few years and then signing up for subscription will cost least if you stay off subscription as long as possible.
  6. If you switch from maintenance to subscription with the special offer, it works out slightly cheaper the earlier you do it, contrary to my previous calculations.
  7. Switching from maintenance to subscription with the offer works out slightly cheaper than staying on maintenance, again contrary to my previous calculations. However, Autodesk’s perception of this as “huge incentives for loyalty that we’re giving to maintenance customers” is delusional. The pricing of these options is grouped closely enough to be considered about the same into the longer term, within a reasonable margin for error and with allowance made for Autodesk mind-changes. Any saving that might eventuate will undoubtedly be significantly less than the money you have invested in the perpetual license you would be giving up.
  8. Switching from maintenance to subscription without the offer costs a fortune and would be an utterly ridiculous proposition.

It’s worth noting that the special offer will lapse if at any stage you drop subscription for a while, or if you want to switch to a different subscription product. If you switch to subscription and take advantage of the supposed flexibility of the rental model by dropping a license for a while due to a recession, you’re back at full price. When that happens, see point 8 above.

You won’t have your perpetual license to tide you over, either; you gave that away. Signing up for this offer will permanently financially lock you into Autodesk subscription, whatever future price increases Autodesk decides its shareholders would like to see you pay. You’re also signing up for a lifetime of whatever conditions Autodesk decides to impose at each subscription renewal, however unreasonable you consider those conditions to be.

That’s why, despite Autodesk’s revised figures making the current deal less obviously terrible than before, the essential point from my first summary still holds true:

DO NOT switch from maintenance to subscription.

The savings from switching are relatively minor, can easily disappear with a wave of Autodesk’s magic wand, and don’t remotely justify giving up your valuable perpetual license. Remember, that license represents your safety net. It allows you to keep using your software for years without paying Autodesk, while you work out your escape route. Autodesk desperately wants that license because it gives you a tiny bit of control. Autodesk wants all of that control.

Don’t fall for it. Keep your perpetual license.

25 Comments

  1. davidcalmeida@yahoo.com.br

    The simplest and final truth is that ADSK is just doing it wrong. They want to drive consumers to subscription (rental) right? So, instead of making rental attractive, they are making maintenance more confusing and more expensive. No one with a perpetual license can see value in subscription because they are upping our room temperature.

    They should have made the other room more cozy instead.

  2. Dieter Schlaepfer

    Ok, to begin with I’d like to tell an amusing story. This is part I. Part II will get into my perceptions of the advantages of subscription. I realize you’ll disagree, but I do want to demonstrate that there is more than one way of looking at this question.

    Story – Part I
    Once upon a time, there was a guy named Steve (a coincidence–no relation) who frequented a pub called The Pub. It was a pleasant place where you had a nice variety of ales, stouts, and even a couple of pilsners. The wait staff was friendly and attentive, and the prices were moderate.

    One Friday evening, Steve came in and the owner came over and said, “Steve, we’re going to be making a change. This change will make your drinks cheaper in the long run. We’re switching to a membership pub. After you buy your membership, your drinks will be free for one product, whichever one you choose.”

    Steve: “How long is the membership good for?”

    Owner: “Oh, it’s perpetual. Anytime you come in for the product you choose, your drinks are free. I think you get the IPA.”

    Steve: “So how much does the membership cost?”

    Owner; “It’s only $4,000 for the IPA.”

    Steve gasps. “But what if I move?“

    Owner: Doesn’t matter. If you’re a member, you can come in anytime. The IPA will be free. It will save you money in the long run.

    Steve: Can I bring friends? Can I sell my membership? What if you close the shop?

    Owner: Sure, but your friends need to become members. No, the membership is non-transferable. And no, I’m not gonna close the shop. Not until I’m ready to retire. Remember it’s way cheaper in the long run. I even did the math for you on this napkin.

    Steve: What happened to your wait staff?

    Owner: Oh, I laid them off. I figure if I sell memberships, nobody’s going to go to any other pub. It’s self serve now. Did I mention the money you’re going to save? You can check my math.

    It’s late, I’m sleepy. Next time, part II.

    Dieter

    1. So this owner unilaterally decides to change the way customers buy products (against their wishes), but with a bunch of slick talking he presents it as good for those customers. But it’s a dodgy deal! The owner shouldn’t be trusted because he’s just going to end up taking your money, financially locking you in to his business, and sacking his staff who have provided you with good service in the past.

      OK, I got that. Sounds hauntingly familiar.

      While I appreciate you presenting my side of the argument, I really look forward to seeing a pro-Autodesk position expressed in your next instalment. Cheers!

  3. Lloyd

    Dieter, you left out the part where it’s $4000 this year. And then it’s $4500 next year. And then it’s $6000 the year after that….

    Methinks Autodesk has whole-heartedly embraced George Carlin’s definition of customer service.

    So, Bricscad, how ya doin’? 😉

    1. Griffin

      @Dieter
      In addition to the price increases you also left out the part where sometimes the ADSK brew is infested with bugs and the members have to drink last year’s stock until he fixes it. Also as a safety measure the 2018 IPA comes in a special bottle that can only members can open.

  4. Dieter Schlaepfer

    Yes, Griffin. As you nicely point out, that’s one of the problems with the high-entry, perpetual membership model for The Pub.

    In contrast, if you had paid for a *single pint* at a time, and you found bugs floating in your ale, you have the easy decision to simply walk across the street to the other pub, called the What Ales You. But the owner of The Pub has locked you in with his $4,000 perpetual plan.

    The owner of the What Ales You sells ale by the pint instead, and has a big incentive to be more responsive to immediate customer needs.

    So, even if the owner of The Pub argues that it’s cheaper in the long run, most customers will want to move to the What Ales You even if it’s more expensive in the long run.

    Dieter

    1. Sorry, Dieter, but your tortured analogy falls over for reasons other than your bad guy looking a lot like Autodesk.

      1. The perpetual license model that you’re trying to rubbish has been the basis of Autodesk’s successful business for 30 years. It’s not just some new kooky idea dreamed up by some oddball loser. It’s a proven success story, repeated by many other companies.

      2. Perpetual licenses aren’t a lock-in plan. They’re an escape plan. People can stop paying and still keep playing. Autodesk hates that idea, and is desperate to take our escape route away from us.

      3. The current switch-to-subscription offer is a massive lock-in. Marketed as a “discount”, the merely high subscription costs will leap up to astronomical levels if a customer that falls for that ruse ever stops paying continuously, no matter how much the prices rise and circumstances change.

      4. The idea that Autodesk will become more responsive to our needs once we’re all renting is laughable. As Autodesk has progressively removed our options and pushed us closer and closer to an all-rental model, we’ve seen the exact opposite happen.

      This is not just my AutoCAD-based impression, many other customers with other products have stated the same. Stagnation. Failure to address many long-standing problems including finishing off half-baked features. Removal of features. Introduction of undesirables that actually make the product worse. Performance failings. It’s a sorry tale and Autodesk should be thoroughly ashamed of it.

      In contrast, Bricsys is an example of a perpetual-based company. Now there’s a shining example of a company responsive to customer needs. BricsCAD is improving at a rate that so far exceeds AutoCAD that there’s no comparison. According to your analogy, that company should be leaving bugs in its ale, ignoring customer needs and laying off its staff. The opposite is true.

      Why is all-rental Autodesk the one with a record of a 10% staff lop-off every few years? I sense another one coming soon, unfortunately, to placate the shareholders. Why is all-rental Autodesk the one that’s unresponsive to customer needs? Why is all-rental Autodesk the one that leaves bugs in its ale? Why is all-rental Autodesk the one with stale beer?

      Perhaps you should try another analogy.

  5. Torsten Moses

    Dear Dieter,

    and the fact that Autodesk wants (and obviously *MUST*) try to get a *CONTANT* and *HIGH* and *CONTINUOULSY HIGH* revenue from AutoCAD (and other products) has most likely nothing to do with the new subscription-only model ?
    Right ? It must ne completely independent from that, as I never saw any statement by Autodesk (or you) about this relation …

    And the fact that a stock-based company has to constantly provide revenue to their shareholders has obviously also nothing to do with the new subscription-only model ?
    And that Autodesk promised to deliver this to shareholders very soon by some “magics” … also has nothing to do with it all ?

    All wild phantasies in users’ weird heads ? And only Autodesk sees the things in correct relations ?

    Glad that we have Autodesk and its related publishers to explain the world to us 🙂
    many greetings & Happy Easter 🙂

  6. Dieter Schlaepfer

    So, you would say that the customers of The Pub are better off now with the $4,000 perpetual membership, right? I’m talking about The Pub now, not Autodesk.

    Just asking.

    Dieter

    1. I wouldn’t take The Pub’s deal, no. But it’s an analogy strained well beyond relevance, see above.

      How about a car analogy instead, they’re always fun. Have you ever owned a car? If so, why? Would you be outraged at the idea of paying up front for it? Why not just pop down to Avis and rent what you want to drive instead? Much lower initial cost. Very flexible, change to a different model at short notice. No need to worry about servicing. So many advantages! Why doesn’t everybody just rent their cars?

      Same reason they don’t rent their CAD software. Because they own calculators and are not entirely stupid.

  7. CadBystander

    Now play out Dieter’s story. You buy the $4K life membership.

    Scene: A year later.

    Owner: Oh, you know that membership we sold you last year ? We also introduced a by-the-pint program after you bought that membership. It’s now too expensive for us maintain two business models, so we’re going to start charging you by-the-pint.

    Steve: Wait a minute. You told me this was a perpetual membership.

    Owner: Yeah. About that – read the fine print in the EULA. You didn’t own the membership.

    Steve: So what options do I have have now ?

    Owner: You can give up your membership and start paying for your drinks by-the-pint. A pint now cost $100. And here’s a letter from our Sr. Director of Subscriber Success describing all the benefits like insect-free beer, clean glasses and a place to sit in The Pub.

    Steve: Wait – those are things I was getting right now. Wasn’t I ? Were you serving me insect laden beer in dirty glasses all year ?

    Owner: Of course, but going forward, the insect-free beer and clean glasses will be available only to our by-the-pint customers.

    Steve: What do I get in return for giving up my membership ?

    Owner: See the letter describing the benefits. And oh, by the way, if you don’t give up your perpetual membership, we’re going to increase the costs for you to hold on to that membership. Also, our pints go up in price over time. Here are our pricing increases for the next three years.

    Steve: WTF ? What’s to stop you from increasing prices to anything you want after I switch to paying by-the-pint ?

    Owner: I could have done that right now. I’m being very honest and transparent by sharing the pricing increases for the next three years.

    Steve: You numbskull. Your plan might work for *NEW* patrons. What about the $4K I paid a year ago and put my faith in your pub and contributed to your growth and success ?

    Owner: Pay up or get out.

  8. Torsten Moses

    Dear Dieter,

    not sure what you mean …

    My point is, that all Autodesk related staff always explain
    a) why it is better for the users
    b) explaining that it reduces / simplifies Autodesk internal workflows (which should be *their* problem, not customers – costumers should not pay the invoice of Autodesk’s internal good or bad management of licensing stuff).

    I think, users should really carefully decide how they continue – based on all those facts provided by Steve …
    and not by the arguments provided from Autodesk side, as those are intended to provide & defend Autodesk’s needs and interests (as mentioned : “don’t ask the wofl about sheeps …”)

    And I wondered, that tons of arguments are provided by Autodesk – but I never heard about stock & shareholders …

    many greetings !

  9. Dieter Schlaepfer

    Steve,
    Yes, for some reason you prefer perpetual licenses for software, but not for hopsware even though you would save money in the long run for both.

    Funny you should mention cars. You keep helping me prove my point. 😉 Yes, I own two cars. In a month or three, I plan to rent a car for a long trip through a desert. Now why do you suppose I’d want to do that? One of my sons owns one car and leases another car for his thriving business. Why do you think he would do that?

    CadBystander,
    You make some excellent points. A rental, lease, or purchase involves more than just cost as Steve suggests. In my view, there are many considerations including the following:

    1. Cost – if a rental, lease, or membership were low enough in price, almost everyone would do so (at a dollar a month, heck, I’d lease my shoes)
    2. Business model, terms and conditions, and their consequences
    3. Quality of fulfillment – this is to your point
    4. Tax consequences
    5. Opportunity cost – by tying up a lot of cash, what potential opportunities do you lose?
    6. Financial accounting – rental, lease, or membership costs can easily be assigned to each project and billed to each customer
    7. Flexibility – you can easily increase or decrease the number and types of licenses for several (not just one) products
    8. A truly perpetual software license requires you to maintain obsolete hardware and old operating systems, and discourages the adoption of new technologies
    9. Perpetual licenses put most of the financial burden on new customers rather than spreading it more fairly between all users
    10. Perpetual software licenses create “a long tail” of product versions, making data sharing between users more difficult
    11. Perpetual software licenses encourage users to use less secure software and operating systems in a time when cybercrime and espionage are mushrooming
    12. Providers of perpetual licenses have less incentive to support long-time customers than providers of rental, leased, and membership business models do

    In my personal opinion, the exception to these considerations and benefits are hobbyists, makers, and retirees. Autodesk provides a wonderful subscription model for Fusion 360 for people who fall into this category, and I’d encourage you to request the same accommodation for AutoCAD. How’s that?

    Torsten,
    All I’m doing is trying to provide a balanced view of all the things people should consider when they make their choices. There are no wolves or sheep here. I’m a technical writer at Autodesk with some strong opinions that sometimes differ in the extreme from Steve’s. Is that ok?

    Please understand that Steve and I go back a long ways and I respect him. He’s provided a lot of valuable feedback to us over the years, and on occasion, I’ve been able to arrange for him to have direct input and conversations with some of our software development people. We’re comfortable arguing with each other, and he understands the scope of my responsibilities.

    If he ever makes it out to California, I’ll happily take him to some excellent microbreweries near Hopland (https://www.visitmendocino.com/nine-hop-stops/) where we can argue some more and agree on other things. Yes, I’m buying—by the pint. 😉

    Kind regards,
    Dieter

    1. If Autodesk wanted to rent out AutoCAD for the price of a pint, and if I could keep drinking beer from a magic inexhaustible glass, you might have a point.

      Please see Why owning stuff is still important (repost) for my views on ownership and rental.

      Yes, I would happily rent a car on a trip. No, I wouldn’t rent a car for my daily drive, and neither would you. A car company that stopped selling its cars and only allowed you to rent them would not survive long.

  10. Torsten Moses

    Dear Dieter,

    I think I got your position carefully and correctly 🙂
    And I also appreciate that you take the “risk” of such discussions, providing Autodesk’s view on the topic, really.

    >> with some strong opinions that sometimes differ in the extreme from Steve’s. Is that ok?

    There is nothing extreme in Steve’s points 🙂 All he wrote is complete correct and matches reality.

    My point here is (and you did never answer to that !) : it is *AUTODESK’s” point of view – and by far not bvalanced at all 🙂
    If Autodesk wants to make the life & business easier for their customers, then they should give *them* the opportunities of choices …

    But all I read from Autodesk (and from your side), is trying to make people to understand Autodesk’s point of view – that is not balanced at all.
    And for sure, there will be a hundred more arguments from Autodesk’s side why subscription-only is better (for users ???).
    I have learned that to have options is the best way – for all parties !

    And in turn, I never heard anything about “delivering to shareholders” and “it’s the stock’s law …” – nothing from Autodesk, nothing from you – but that is the absolute main point in Autodesk’s behaviour.

    So in the end, I have massive doubts in all coming from Autodesk … because they tell phantastic arguments & storys about whatever, and never provide the real reason behind (except, when you read financial papers & interviews with “analysts” …)

    Can you explain that discrepancy ?
    The simple truth is : let customers decide, based on a range of options … then you will get real results … and for sure, majority of customers do not want subscription-only model, clearly – so why does Autodesk does not follow the wishes of their customers ?

    >> All I’m doing is trying to provide a balanced view of all the things people should consider when they make their choices.

    Why so much efforts for this ? There is no need for a “balanced view” at all, sorry to say that.
    Simply give users a choice, you will see what they prefer – what Autodesk wants, for their own interests (and shareholders’ interests !!) does not matter at all, that is their internal – if they can get it fulfilled, fine; but not on the back of their users …

    Sorry if I have some ideals here, still – not intending to give it up 🙂
    many greetings !

  11. …just wanted to shed something.
    Steve, thanks for all your efforts and for providing a platform for all these discussions. Dieter you have my perfect appreciation for diving this pool of discontent and frustration.

  12. Dieter Schlaepfer

    Torsten,
    Please understand that I’m representing my own views here. I’m not trying to represent Autodesk’s views, nor do I know specifically what they are. Shame on me, I guess.

    But the points I’m making apply to Adobe and any other software vendor, or any business organization on the planet for that matter. My view is that rental, lease, and subscription models provide value beyond strictly cost. That’s all.

    Markus,
    Thank you. From personal experience, I appreciate how easy it is to become frustrated and how hard it is for me to calm down once I’m agitated. Facts and perspective help me focus. 😉

    Kind regards,
    Dieter

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