News from Topaz Labs

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An exciting announcement from Topaz Labs!

Customers will now have to pay for software updates 12 months after buying a licence.

I am still waiting for Denoise AI to reach a state where it works consistently well. Hopefully they'll mend it sufficiently before I'm expected to pay again.

https://community.topazlabs.com/t/ongoing-product-value-and-paid-upgrades/13299?utm_source=Topaz+Updates&utm_campaign=6ee379e38b-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_08_30_10_18_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5e4dd8652a-6ee379e38b-92682629&mc_cid=6ee379e38b&mc_eid=baf72705e6
 

ADemuth

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I'm not a customer of theirs, so this doesn't affect me. I've considered buying in a couple of times, though was skeptical because of their less than stellar upgrade history, along with the fact that their prices that are way out of my league.

This was bound to happen - free upgrades forever means they'll either be buggy upgrades since they can't dedicate the resources to them (already happening) or they'll go under (no upgrades ever again). However, since they were selling software for a certain amount with the intent to give away free upgrades forever, it seems like they could sell the software initially for a bit less knowing full well when they make a significant upgrade, they'll be making more money. I also feel like they are throwing the customers they have under the bus by offering them only 6 months free upgrades. I don't think they should continue their free-forever program, but I think they can throw them meatier bone than that.
 
Joined
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The issue for me is that Denoise AI is far from perfect (I'd question whether it's actually finished) - it's hit or miss software, ie, when it works it's brilliant, but there are occasions when it sort of half works and the circumstances are unpredictable.

Current owners of the software find themselves with a rather different deal than the one they purchased - this is a radical change to the licence.

Topaz make a great play of the fact that the 'subscription model' (ie, the Adobe model) is disliked by many - however, I'd argue that not only is the Adobe Photography package better value, it is also a much more finished set of software. Certainly, I do not expect to have to pay for coding errors to be resolved.
 

oldracer

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The old model was that we bought (I know, "licensed") the software, then the vendor offered us upgrades with new and attractive features, which we bought. This is how he stayed in business. IOW he worked for his revenue; new release, new revenue.

The problem with this model is that most software has so many features already that users are overwhelmed and the vendors are running out of ideas for useful new ones. It is increasingly difficult to sell upgrades. (I am running Office 2007, for example, and its capabilities far exceed my needs.) So, in order to survive, the vendors need to switch to a subscription model. (Windows is headed that way, too, folks.)

For users the problem with the subscription model is that the vendor's efforts are totally decoupled from his revenue. So his only reward for bug-fixing and new features is retention of his base and hopefully getting new customers. Human nature being what it is, the software development budget will almost certainly shrink. The extreme case is what is called "harvesting" a brand. Here the vendor completely stops development and just rides the revenue horse into the ground -- advertising like crazy but ultimatley collecting subscription fees from a base declining to zero.

Bottom line here is basically this: As users we are screwed.
 

OldRadioGuy

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If I understand correctly, the new Topaz Labs policy allows the customer to buy/license, and that purchase is good for updates for a year. After that time, the user can continue to use the software with no access to new versions or upgrades, or can pay a license fee for another year of upgrades/new version.

This was a pricing mode Picture Code was using for Photo Ninja long before Adobe and others went that direction.
 

beameup

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I bought most of the Topaz plug-ins back in 2014 and am very satisfied if I never get an "upgrade". Actually, I only installed the Black & White and Adjust 5 into PSE 7. :thumbup:
 
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I was willing to pay the high price (for how much I used it) of the products because I thought I was paying for years of support up front.

If I'm only buying a year of support I'm not going to pay $$$ for the product. Given I think they are aiming at a $$$ making Pro market it means I likely won't be buying from them again as they're not going to drop their price down to what I consider acceptable for my hobbyist use level.
 
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