OK folks as the clock ticks down quickly towards serfdom for many I want to post this. It will be the last time I do so in this fashion because quite frankly if you are silly enough to go for subscription models you will deserve what you get. For those who may still be on the fence though I want to put some real numbers out there based upon Autodesks pricing for Inventor Pro HSM as of today. http://cam.autodesk.com/pricing/
Before we look at the numbers I want to make sure you readers understand that there will be prices and fees for other things to as time goes on. How many remember the unlimited data for smart phones when first offered? Get you in there and it looks cool and it is pretty cheap. May I ask you smart phone users where these cheapo plans are today? May I ask you if you don’t like it what alternative you have besides dump the data? Might as well go back to that flip phone you all despise so much if you don’t feed the data extra charges monster. The very first thing that comes to my mind is data storage and usage online to make all this cloud stuff work well. Of course it goes without saying things like data caps will be impacted for those of you who buy into iPad and Surface Pro do-dads because of course anything cellular will be an extra cost above and beyond the Autodesk subscription.
Something that can’t be predicted exactly is the ancillary costs associated with the problems of being forced to work the way Autodesk wants you to and not how you want to with updates and version preferences. You will take what they give you when they give it to you and marvel as their marketing and publicity people want you to over the loss of control over this part of your business life. Remember though the joy of painless auto updates as promised by those putting lipstick on this pig.
Now to the dollars and cents. I could not find the average length of time a company or seat holder stays with the same CAD or CAM software. I am going to use what I have observed around here as a metric though and once a shop gets going on a program that works they tend to stay. 15 years + is more common than you think. You guys just starting out and thinking 15 years is an eternity and does not apply to you are dead wrong. The 15 years go by fast and then so do the next 15. Unless there is a big shakeup I think we see the main players in CAD and probably for CAM also for an indefinite period of time. You start today and chances are good if you stay with the same company you will be using the same program for many years. Certainly the company will no matter who is there.
Initial year of Inventor Pro HSM full tilt retail is $11,500.00 with one years maintenance. As many of you experienced hands know prices are more negotiable than the sales shmuck would lead you to believe so for many the cost here is less. I highly doubt there will be much in the way of discounts or negotiation for subscriptions which for Inventor Pro will be $3,700.00 per year. That’s right one-third of the cost to buy it outright. Every year. Don’t pay don’t play.
So in ten years we have $11,500.00 + 10 x $1,500 per year maintenance for a total of $26.500.00
Subs cost is 10 x $3,700.00 or $37,000.00 + additional unknown and uncontrollable ancillary expenses and loss of control of your program to boot. In addition you have to continue with subs as long as you ever think you will need to use your data.
In 15 years permanent seats will have cost $34,000.00 with no ancillary costs of course and complete control over everything.
Subs cost will be $55,500.00 no control and ??? extra fees.
I want everyone to know I am a believer in the fact that permanent seat Inventor Pro HSM is the single best deal out there today for what it can do and the cost. I am not crazy about Inventor but as I have said before lots of great work is done with it and HSM is unbeatable as long as it’s feature set matches your needs. For the vast majority of shops it does. When it becomes subscription only though the value in my eyes has been seriously compromised.
I get tired of the mindless smiley faces Marketing and Publicity put on bad deals. Perhaps a disconnect from reality is required to get one of these degrees as M&P distortion of playing field reality is common to almost every company I have dealt with. It saddens me too that this whole subscription thing has been touted as guaranteeing Autodesk’s income stream to investors via the methodology of data hostage taking rather than customer loyalty created by superior products and voluntary cash transfers.
Just what exactly does that CPA MBA mindset say about regard for customers? Here, if you are wondering let me help you out. It means their money and success are important. It also means yours is not. Dump the subs only garbage Autodesk. I think you are making a big mistake that will come back to haunt you.