Subscription costs

Well, it's that time of the year for us.. and my bosses dont seem eager to want to pay for the subscription. I've been awaiting SW 2005
greatly and have been on the beta, and like it very much. But to get 2005, we'll have to stay on the subscription.
What i'm asking is.. What would be the major benefits of keeping the subscription so that it looks like it's worth it for the bosses to fork over the cash? Tech support is my number one.. When i'm in a pinch they've always helped me out (in fact i needed help just yesterday). But it's hard to put a dollar value on that. Obviously upgrading to 2005 is a big thing, but i'm unsure which features to show off to the bosses to make it seem like getting 2005 is worth the money. Does anyone have any special feature they'd like to point out? i'm not gonna make them read a huge "whats new" pdf, most of the stuff in there doesn't change productivity all that much..
Thanks for your input,
Andre
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Well, since everybody's needs are different, I can only recommend that you skim over the What's New Guide and make a guestimate of home much time the new stuff will save over the course of a year. Multiply that by your burden rate for a year and see if it's more than the cost of suscription.
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Other sources of additional cost are lost time learning/playing around with new features, administration time loading the software and software problems. Oh, and don't forget hardware upgrades if required.
Kman

burden
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Good points.
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Andre
Unfortunately, this is the way of all modern engineering software, not just SW.
If you have to collaborate and share data with the outside world, you almost "have" to remain current.
Regards
Mark

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I'd think you're in a better position to answer that than anyone else.
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One powerful argument is to remain compatible with your customers and suppliers if you exchange SolidWorks files with them.
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Andr? Richard wrote:

Andre, I have to question myself about what Subscription Service is worth, and from year to year it seems less "worth" to me in my business. But my business is not your business, of course. I'm a freelancer, and although it's rather likely I'll run into a situation where I'll have to accept files in a later version of SolidWorks than I have on hand (IF I accept the job), the inconvenience of that may not "cost" me as much as Subscription Service would. Frankly, I don't NEED technical support from SolidWorks Corporation very much. I get about everything I need in that vein free, from participation and the participants in this newsgroup. If I absolutely have to go to a new version of SolidWorks sometime, I believe (people please correct me if I'm wrong) that I can pay a one-time fee of several hundred less than the yearly maintenance fee of $1295, even though that doesn't get me technical support or service packs. I've learned to hang back on the use of new versions of SolidWorks, and sometimes I hang back a very long time . . . and for good reason. SolidWorks Corporation has become very well known for putting out releases that are buggy as Hell (and with no good excuses for it) -- so buggy they're hardly worth using unless one really REQUIRES whatever extra functionality is included. I don't find that often to be the case, and unless you're someone like Paul Salvador you probably wouldn't either.
This time around I'm fairly likely to skip SolidWorks 2004 almost entirely (as I did with SolidWorks 2001, and without and dire consequences) and go directly to SolidWorks 2005 . . . WHEN I'M DRIVEN TO IT or when the messages on this newsgroup indicate that it's VERY worth my while to do it. I suggest you approach the question of "upgrading" with at least as much thought as I've given it. Although your bosses' motivation is likely to be less logical and more about saving money (whether wisely or no) it actually MAY NOT be in the best interests of your company to pay for Subscription Service . . . at least not on all of your seats. You can always maintain one seat (even while not necessarily "upgrading" it) IF it's likely that your office will have to accept files in later formats AND keep their parametric history. If you don't really need parametric history you don't really need the upgrade at all -- just get your files in IGES, STEP, ACIS or Parasolid translations. Only you and they can judge whether you really need continuous upgrade options and technical support, but I suggest you think about it carefully and with an open mind.
Mark 'Sporky' Stapleton Watermark Design, LLC www.h2omarkdesign.com
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Hey Spork,
***snip***

***snip***
After being laid off last October, I am also on my own, and I up graded to SW 2004 from 2001Plus, and it cost me the subsription price ($1295.00) PLUS a $500.00 "penalty". So, I guess it all depends on how long you wait.
FWIW, Muggs
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How about compatability. If you use vendors or exchnage files with others using SolidWorks and they are on the next version and your not it's impossible for you to open and use their files. Natively anyway.
snipped-for-privacy@3dluvr.com (Andr? Richard) wrote in message

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Rob Rodriguez wrote:

It's quite possible for a company with several seats NOT to need more than one seat on the latest-and-(NOT)greatest release. IF parametric history is NEEDED, that's one thing, but if all you need to do is USE geometry from later versions then you only really need ONE seat that will import a file natively and then export to Parasolid (or IGES, or STEP or ACIS). I'm suggesting that a very large proportion of those companies that maintain all their seats on Subscription Service really don't NEED to do so and they may be financially better off by NOT doing so. And frankly, a fairly large proportion of companies declining to renew their Subscription Service MIGHT just get SolidWorks Corporation thinking more about how they can make Subscription Service more valuable to their customers. I'm not suggesting a boycott (as I did at one time). I'm just suggesting that people do some careful and impartial analysis.
'Sporky'
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Spork,
I kinda agree with you on most points. However, situations do vary allot. We just got a whole shitload of files, from a new customer, in SW2004 format. In this case (and most others with us) we need the features. We'll also need four or five people working on the data at the same time, so we have little choice. At times it seems like paying protection to the Mob.
Regards
Mark

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MM wrote:

Y'know, mi Amigo, that's to be expected. Many companies WOULD need to keep their seats -- all or maybe just several -- up to date. But I'd almost be willing to bet that there might be just as many (if not more) companies who WOULDN'T actually NEED that. Actually I suspect that I'm more likely to need it (as a freelancer) than most companies would, and I've just about decided that I DON'T (need it).
'Sporky'
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Mark (or anyone), d'ya know for sure whether yer can get the one-time upgrade on a seat from yer VAR? I think the cost I read (on the newsgroup here) was like $700 or something similar. If you let your maintenance lapse they tack on a reinstallation fee to reinstate Subscription Service, but would they do that for a one-time upgrade? I know my VAR remains mum on the subject -- obviously doesn't want to talk about it, and I don't blame him if $700 is really the deal.
'Sporky'
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Spork,
Sure would be nice if it's true. You wait till the dust settles, fork over a couple of C notes and your done.
Mastercam used to be like that. You pay a fixed fee, 10%, for an upgrade whenever you want. All the patches and fixes are free, and you don't need a maintenance contract to get them. They're changing their system to be more in line with the "shakedown" policies of everyone else. I'm still not to clear on the details. I suspect the got some bean counter/marketing types involved. The old way wasn't generating enough revenue I guess. It always amazes me how marketing slimeballs can put a spin on a ripoff to make it sound like your getting a better deal. It's just a laughably tranparent scheme to generate money with zero effort. But, I guess there's alot of people that fall for it.
Regards
Mark

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This was the best way to do it in my mind. Autocad LT still works this way.
My big complaint with SW maint is that I would happily pay for the "upgrade" portion of the maintenence which is a good value, but as an established user, I get torqued when I have to pay the "support" component (near worthless for me).
Maybe I have these two uses of the maint money artificially seperated, but I don't have much use for the VAR network (not trying to discount them, but for me there's simply no compelling need).
Ideal Case: Pay for upgrades on maint or "buy" upgrades as needed - Buy additional "live support" at a higher price if and when one needs it.
Regards,
SMA
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Spork,
Yea,... It's gotta be tough to swallow if your a one man band. Around here, they've chalked it up to the cost of doing business. Still bugs the hell outa me though.
Seem's you and Paul S. are pretty much in the same boat in that regard. You may want to ask his opinion. Make sure you're strapped in good and tight for the response though.
Regards
Mark

allot. We

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Hey Mark and Mark,
I hear you guys on both sides.. I sympathize with Spork because of past issues and have come close to skipping my subscription 2-3 times. But, I do have active clients with SW and it was a factor for me keeping the subscription active, especially last year (which was a twist because SW2004 had a bad case of loft and trim surface issues and luckily my contract stated specifically support only for the more stable service pack, and that was a good/lucky thing!!). Although, I did get some incentives from my var during those times which allowed me to pay for X months of time instead of the full annual amount (deferment). This worked out well because it also moved my annual date out where I tend to be more active in the year. There are quite a few independent consultants out there with the same issues but I think most are still not pushing the software that much.
I wish I had stopped two of the times SW really sucked but I had to make a decision and like some decisions (I don't own/operated a crystal ball) are not good ones. I still strongly feel we, the users, should have ALL been reimbursed for the earlier problems and some of the later screw ups! It's my opinion still that if the users recognize a significant fubar in the product that there has to be some payback! But hey, imho, dealing with corporate cowards seems to be the future... and bending over and taking it is part of the game, well, unless you or more really get f#@*^&!? Then, it's are real issue!?
SW2005 is finally addressing splines and that is an issue (with me) which seems to be moving well or it's a good start so far.. also, surface issues are looking good. I wish SW2005 was like this 6 years ago (when I bought SW98), it's stable (for me) and it has features which get me excited and hopeful.
SW2005 is a significant release so I don't know why anyone would hold back but everyone has their own specific reasons. For Andre, I'd suggest at least one license if you have a client who is active and if things escalate on the project in support for SW2005, at least you have ammo or a license and someone (train someone) with some experience with SW2005.
Now, as MM said, beta is different from PR0 and SP0 so, we keep our fingers crossed....
BTW, I've already done a few projects in SW2005 beta, it's that stable for me. (yep, it's a risk but I also ride my mtn bike down twisting roads at 50+mph for fun.)
..
MM wrote:

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'it has features which get me excited and hopeful.'
goodness..... : )
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Paul,
Woa.... there partner !!! I'm truly shocked at the lack of clever cynicism. No offense, but your calm demeanor bespeaks one of two things. Either you're on heavy meds, or 2005 really is good. I didn't participate in this beta, so I don't have a clue.
What about speed. Is it slower than 2004 ? We just built all new AMD 64's to deal with that pig, all with 2gb of memory.
Regards
Mark

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