I will be happy to pay for an upgrade when Topaz manages to release a reasonably bug-free and properly self-installing one on the first try. I resent being asked to pay to be effectively a beta tester. So far I don’t see that happening, so I will stay with the versions I have.
If this new policy does nothing else for me - any feelings of good will I had toward Topaz are regrettably gone. It’s such a bold face disconnect from the unlimited free upgrade policy that sold the products to me in the first place that even if Topaz were to reverse course at some point in the future the trust is gone.
The entire product development line has been overlapping and confusing and often buggy. I’ve stayed with it because of free upgrades. The value just isn’t there anymore.
There are many ways to think about what this new policy is really about but the most logical is that they honestly need the money to continue developing. But the sad fact is that, up to this point, their development has not proven its worth. Looking at the release notes for the newest Denoise “major upgrade”, it is full of bugs and short on content. Yes, aside from the bugs, the products do what they are supposed to do, and they do a better job than the competition. But as many people have pointed out, the older versions of their products often work better than the new versions, which is even less of a reason to pay for an upgrade. The policy might have been something that could have been swallowed at half the cost. But when an upgrade costs $10 less than the full product, you’re just plain out of touch.
Let’s make a list of pros and cons of the new policy for existing customers:
- We have to pay for an upgrade which we had expected to be free
- The upgrade doesn’t have any substantial difference in capabilities (re-arranging a UI does not count!)
- Based on history the upgrade will probably have a significant number of bugs
- It may not even work as well as what we already have
- We can’t try the new version without wiping out our current version
The silence from management shows a total disconnect between them and their customer base. Why should I pay for an upgrade or why should I purchase any new product they might come out with after being treated like this? I’ll just continue to use the versions of what I have until they don’t work. By then, someone else will have something that does the job that the Topaz software used to do, Topaz’ intellectual property will have been gobbled up by another company, or it will simply fade away due to poor management.
It’s actually quite sad to to see.
I agree, I find myself not really using them anymore. To me they are very hit or miss how they work, I’m not very impressed anymore.The only Topaz product I use now is Topaz Studio but who knows when that too will be included in the pay to update scheme.
Nepotism is rarely a good way to pick a CEO, nor to keep one.