Author Topic: Free Altium is Coming  (Read 297626 times)

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Offline EEVblog

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #850 on: April 15, 2015, 07:20:26 am »
I just love how my distributor just send me a bill for renewing my subscription without even a mention of new licensing or product options.
I wonder if they will offer upgrade/downgrade paths for current licence owners...

Downgrade?
The majority of Altium users would probably take it, and then the company would implode!
 

Offline Ice-Tea

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #851 on: April 15, 2015, 09:08:13 am »
Which is probably why the new product options are a really bad idea.

Never a good idea to leave your loyal customers with the idea they got the shitty end of the deal.

Online T3sl4co1l

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #852 on: April 15, 2015, 10:13:22 am »
Seems to me, the idea is to take your legacy product, and price it *up* to drive sales away, while offering newer or better-supported offerings.

A preferable alternative might be to price it *down* into irrelevance, reduce or fully cut support (you're on your own, besides user forums), and perhaps release some of the source ("it's your problem now").  Not that that's an option for most of these big, old, lumbering companies, who greedily hoard their crappy code and try to wring every thin cent they can out of it (but it's "IP"!!).

So, sigh I guess...

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Offline EEVblog

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #853 on: April 15, 2015, 10:46:34 am »
Never a good idea to leave your loyal customers with the idea they got the shitty end of the deal.

But in true Altium spirit they did exactly that when they suddenly dropped prices by 70%!, back when it was around $12K a seat.
I can remember Nick Martin giving a speech at the company announcing it, saying "we can never go back to high priced software". That didn't last long  ::)
 

Offline tszaboo

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #854 on: April 15, 2015, 11:02:58 am »
Never a good idea to leave your loyal customers with the idea they got the shitty end of the deal.

But in true Altium spirit they did exactly that when they suddenly dropped prices by 70%!, back when it was around $12K a seat.
I can remember Nick Martin giving a speech at the company announcing it, saying "we can never go back to high priced software". That didn't last long  ::)
I still dont get why they did that. Did they really expect to triple the sales??? Or some COO was really bad a math? They expected all the FPGA development to switch to their product?
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Offline DerekG

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #855 on: April 15, 2015, 11:53:40 am »
Did they really expect to triple the sales???
A quadrupling of sales was the argument that was put to their shareholders.

A similar argument was put to their shareholders to support their relocation to China.
Quote
Or some COO was really bad a math?
As it turned out, yes.
Quote
They expected all the FPGA development to switch to their product?
Yes. Altium lost their way for almost 10 years with FPGAs.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2015, 11:57:46 am by DerekG »
I also sat between Elvis & Bigfoot on the UFO.
 

Offline Rigby

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #856 on: April 15, 2015, 12:46:03 pm »
I still dont get why they did that. Did they really expect to triple the sales??? Or some COO was really bad a math? They expected all the FPGA development to switch to their product?

OK so this I do get.  One of the few things in the world...

Off topic for a second: Valve Software's Steam sales have proven repeatedly that the net and gross income for a given game improve dramatically when the game is on sale.  Not only are there more sales, there are more profits during sales.  This only works when the game is on sale, and it doesn't work long-term when the price is lowered long-term.

I am certain that when AD's price was lowered that they sold a lot more licenses, and had a short-term gain in profits but because they didn't call it a "sale" and they kept the price low, the surge in sales would have slowed relatively quickly, and the normal year-on-year urge to increase profits organically raised the price up again.

This is why Steam has many 7-10 day periods throughout the year where games are 75% off, or sometimes even 90% off.  The publishers and .. well, everyone involved, earns a hell of a lot more money during the sales.
 

Offline Rigby

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #857 on: April 15, 2015, 12:47:50 pm »
By the way, the Circuit Maker beta participants were released from NDA today.  If you have questions, I'll do my best to answer.

I didn't get a lot of time with the tool, maybe 5 hours in total, but I did create contribute some footprints to the vault and I did design some boards.  I didn't have any fabbed, though.  Also, I am not an AD expert whatsoever, so I am probably not going to be able much in terms of contrast between AD and CM or even CS.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #858 on: April 15, 2015, 01:20:40 pm »
But in true Altium spirit they did exactly that when they suddenly dropped prices by 70%!, back when it was around $12K a seat.
I can remember Nick Martin giving a speech at the company announcing it, saying "we can never go back to high priced software". That didn't last long  ::)
I still dont get why they did that. Did they really expect to triple the sales??? Or some COO was really bad a math? They expected all the FPGA development to switch to their product?

IIRC the President and COO at the time was against the move, hence why she was given the boot not long after.
Yes, I think the public reason was that they wanted to align the prices with FPGA type subscription, but IIRC there was lots of ra-ra talk about how Protel used to be a low cost tools and the company had strayed from it's roots etc.

And for those who forget it actually happened. And it was 75%, not 70%, my bad:
http://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/practical-chip-design/4309511/Altium-cuts-prices-on-their-design-tool-creating-an-interesting-IP-pricing-play
http://www.embedded.com/electronics-news/4197934/Altium-cuts-the-price-of-design-tools

IMO it was good move for the industry, maybe not so good for the company though, although IIRC it didn't hurt them a huge amount. So essentially I think the move worked in bringing in extra customers, as you would expect it would. That was a very attractive price.
The problem was they were smack in the middle of the FPGA dream which everyone but Altium saw was going to fail miserably as it ultimately did.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2015, 01:22:37 pm by EEVblog »
 

Offline Rufus

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #859 on: April 15, 2015, 03:00:26 pm »
I think the move worked in bringing in extra customers, as you would expect it would. That was a very attractive price.

Extra customers paying $1500 support subscriptions.
 

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #860 on: April 15, 2015, 05:13:54 pm »
But in true Altium spirit they did exactly that when they suddenly dropped prices by 70%!, back when it was around $12K a seat.
I can remember Nick Martin giving a speech at the company announcing it, saying "we can never go back to high priced software". That didn't last long  ::)
I still dont get why they did that. Did they really expect to triple the sales??? Or some COO was really bad a math? They expected all the FPGA development to switch to their product?

IIRC the President and COO at the time was against the move, hence why she was given the boot not long after.
Yes, I think the public reason was that they wanted to align the prices with FPGA type subscription, but IIRC there was lots of ra-ra talk about how Protel used to be a low cost tools and the company had strayed from it's roots etc.

And for those who forget it actually happened. And it was 75%, not 70%, my bad:
http://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/practical-chip-design/4309511/Altium-cuts-prices-on-their-design-tool-creating-an-interesting-IP-pricing-play
http://www.embedded.com/electronics-news/4197934/Altium-cuts-the-price-of-design-tools

IMO it was good move for the industry, maybe not so good for the company though, although IIRC it didn't hurt them a huge amount. So essentially I think the move worked in bringing in extra customers, as you would expect it would. That was a very attractive price.
The problem was they were smack in the middle of the FPGA dream which everyone but Altium saw was going to fail miserably as it ultimately did.

I remember that around this time, we were strongly considering moving from Altium to another package, mainly because we didn't think that the extra features offered (the FPGA and the microcontroller stuff) were worth a damn considering the money Altium wanted for licenses. I think we considered dropping maintenance, too, as the current version was working well enough. When they cut the price it was a no-brainer to continue with Altium and upgrade.

My guess is that other users were similarly not upgrading, so Altium had no income from current users. Dropping the price made it reasonable for those (we) users to continue with Altium, and even buy more licenses (which we did), and no doubt it made Altium a possible upgrade path for small business guys who wanted something better than EAGLE. That seemed like a good strategy.

Then they screwed the pooch by returning to the previous price.
 

Offline HackedFridgeMagnet

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #861 on: April 16, 2015, 06:09:55 am »
I think that Steam sale idea is a good one for Altium.
The people without much money can wait for a sale that may come occasionally, while the people who need it now pay full price. It's also a bit like the way they sell airline tickets.
ps. Not that I really care about Altium.
 

Offline Rigby

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #862 on: April 19, 2015, 12:31:33 am »
I think that Steam sale idea is a good one for Altium.
The people without much money can wait for a sale that may come occasionally, while the people who need it now pay full price. It's also a bit like the way they sell airline tickets.

Or, just let the hobbyists and non-commercial folks pick up the full version inexpensively.  This is another known working model.
 

Offline tszaboo

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #863 on: April 24, 2015, 10:48:16 pm »
"Haven't received your CircuitMaker beta invite?
Good news, the wait is over!
The CircuitMaker open beta starts in 3 weeks - read about all the details on our blog and join us at Maker Faire for the celebration!

Learn More About the CircuitMaker Open Beta
This is going to be a huge milestone for CircuitMaker and the entire maker community. Don't miss this opportunity to be one of the first to register for the open beta. We'll see you there!
The CircuitMaker Team"
http://blog.circuitmaker.com/#Blogs/The-Road-to-Maker-Faire
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Offline miguelvp

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #864 on: April 25, 2015, 06:47:27 pm »
got the same email the other day.
 

Offline Zad

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Re: Free Altium is Coming
« Reply #865 on: April 26, 2015, 01:51:08 am »
I got one of those emails today too.

It will be interesting to see if they have further crippled the concept, in the light of the new Farnell sponsorship.


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