I was about to add another of your products to my collection.
That will now not happen. I will be advising people to pass, and those I have been encouraging to re-think.
Maybe you need to re-think. Paying a small charge for a major release upgrade is probably acceptable, even though that is not what was promised. However, wanting money for a release that fixes one (or more) of your bugs??? No.
Firmware is software that drives the HW, but technically it’s still code. And it’s not permanent or otherwise it couldn’t be updated. Where the code is loaded from doesn’t seem all that relevant to the point, imo.
A good point was made by @brian.riley about upgrades being tied to a time-period or alternatively, for example, to SW versions.
eg Affinity Photo
I’ve never paid for any updates (minor versions) since I purchased originally. When there is a new major version update I would expect to pay (eg like I have done with ACDSee). The time-period approach seems quasi-subscription. You can decline, but this is like having a perpetual license with no maint (eventually it’s no longer workable). And this doesn’t contribute to steady revenue for the ISV either if the spigot is turned off until updates are published that are more than just bug fixes (ie maint releases). Some ISV’s have upgrade policies that deter this for that reason.
So I’m not clear if the proposed time-based approach will be the ideal solution for Topaz or their customers.
I consider this announcment also as bad news and it is hard to back up such a decision, if you do not use the software professionally on a regular basis. The inital approach of free lifetime updates was not only interesting in a way of ensurement that the software will be working on future hardware/OS versions at the time of buying it, but it also was the openminded and creative spirit behind it, that made the Topaz very likeable as a company. I did like this apporach a lot and over time I have purchased more products than I have intended to in the first line - just to see what these guys are up to, explore novel possibilities, have fun with it, use them if they suit my needs, but also to support this way against the mainstream of “subscription models” where all the risks of further software development and functionality are on the customer. I also experienced problems with installation, artifacts and crashes myself - but this was all under the premise: “they are really trying hard to give me the best experience and keep me satisfied, so don’t blame them”. I also communicated Topaz as an example, that successfully does not give in to mainstream marketing, which did bring a couple of new customers. However, this new change in pricing politics, with just neglecting the original promise made - is very dissapointing, regardless of the understandable business perspective behind it.
And simply by confessing that its not the fault of the early customers, it should be clear that this should only apply to future customers. The proposed costs for the new deal to purchase updates are rather pricey and do not honor at all the promise of “free lifetime upgrades” given in the past.
So, sorry, your company is just loosing a lot af brand attractivity and trust… Maybe re-think this and find a better compromise?
I just learned of this today, and only because of a comment on a Facebook ad for Topaz. So communication of this is a bit lacking as it is a big change.
While nobody is going to be happy to pay more, I have to say this is one of the more “easy to swallow” upgrade strategies I have seen for the software that I use – some are brutal. Think of it as a paid upgrade, at a time of your choosing, that includes a year of updates after that.
I wonder: If my upgrade period expires in August, and in November I realize there was an upgrade in August that I missed, would I still be able to go back and claim that upgrade?
I want Topaz to continue to succeed, and because of that, I understand the need to charge for upgrades to fund further development of existing products. I’m ok with that. I’ve purchased and used lot’s of Topaz software for the past 8-10 years, with the promise of lifetime upgrades, but I understand the need to change.
**Post has been edited to remove misunderstanding.
As far as I understood you continue working with the last version you had purchased and updated, so if you can not afford the updates in 2025 you continue with the version of 2024. I don’t think they will roll back your software to 2020 removing your updates/upgrades bought until 2024?
Andy, I hope you are correct. Please offer something to back this up. In Eric’s example, he only references the last version you’ve OWNED. It is not very conclusive. There is no example such as the one I described.
As an example, let’s say you buy Gigapixel AI for the first time today (2/13/2020), so you receive free upgrades to Gigapixel AI until 2/13/2021.
We then release Gigapixel v4.5 in March, v5 in May, v5.1 in August, and v5.2 in December 2020. You receive all these upgrades for free as part of your initial 1-year upgrade license.
Now imagine we release Gigapixel v5.3 in May 2021 and you decide it’s not worth it. Even though your upgrade license has expired, you can continue using Gigapixel v5.2 (your last owned version) for as long as you like."