Understanding Service Terms vs Legacy License
- You pay a monthly fee for access to the application and the help center. You do not pay for application updates.
- You own your data, but access to the data is contingent upon payment of the application's access fee. You can and should keep backup copies of your data.
- Access fees are charged based on the number of user accounts and the required level of service. Note that "the number of user accounts" is not the same as, and has nothing to do with, a) the number of computers/devices that you can access on, and b) the number of simultaneous logins you can have. For example, you can have just one user account and log into the system with that account on 10 devices at the same time. Your fees will still only be based on a single user account, not 10.
Understanding The Increasing Trend Towards Service Terms
The trend towards service terms for software applications has been on the rise for the past 5 years. Some of the most popular applications in the world are now using this model, for example, Microsoft Office (365) and Adobe Creative Cloud Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc).
There are many reasons why most modern applications choose service terms today, the primary reason being that it is a more natural fit for the extremely fast pace at which technologies are evolving. Selling software "bits" like physical objects, without continuous maintenance, ensures that they will become non-functional with technology iterations over only 3 - 5 years. Since constant updates are necessary to keep software working in the quickly changing environment, the service model makes more sense now, than it may have in the past.
In addition, as applications move towards accessibility on mobile devices which have more limited capacity, more of the applications logic and data must be kept in the Cloud. Hosting of application services and data in the cloud has a continuing cost which must be met in order to continue to maintain the availability of the application.
The number of users accessing the application determines the amount of CPU power and bandwidth that Cloud based servers will require to keep the application available. The higher the number of users, the more CPU and bandwidth will be required, and therefore, the higher the cost of operating the service. This illustrates the relationship between the number of users and the cost of keeping the application available. This is directly associated with the cost of the application's monthly access fee.
Understanding How Your Monthly Cost Will Be Affected
We are happy to be able to provide a seamless transition for most existing customers for converting "legacy license support & updates" monthly fees to a new Standard service plan at the same cost. A Standard service plan includes 5 user accounts. If you have 5 or fewer user accounts, you will probably not see any change in the cost of your monthly service fee. However, if you need more than 5 user accounts, you will probably need to pay a higher access fee to support the additional user accounts that you need. If this is the case, we will contact you to explain the details and your new monthly cost.