ACDSee Gold Gamble

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MinAZ Veteran Member • Posts: 5,556
ACDSee Gold Gamble

I am thinking of taking a gamble on Gold membership.

The plus is you get all the software latest releases plus some other perks like cloud storage for $60 a year.

The minus is obviously that you are now locked into a subscription.

Now, I can get the full license of ACDSee for $150. I actually contacted support and they told me that due to a bug I am not currently able to upgrade but they will refund me the difference. Assuming they honor their word, then my price drops to $80.

So just based on economics, if ACDSee were to release a new version of their photo editor within 15 months, then I break even on the subscription as opposed to upgrading the perpetual license. If they take longer than 15 months to release a new version, or if for whatever reason they release a new version and there is insufficient reason to upgrade, then I lose everything as I will not be able to get my subscription monies back and my software will be disabled. I am unsure that if at that point I wish to upgrade to the current version I have whether I can even do that since after a few years on Gold, you technically don't have any of the previous versions either since you stopped upgrading the perpetual license when you went to the subscription plan.

This is quite the conundrum, and I think it hinges on two main questions:

- can I be reasonably confident that ACDSee photo studio product development cycle will always be 15 months or shorter for the new versions

- can I be reasonably confident that the updated versions will always be compelling enough to want to upgrade

As an example in 2020 I go Gold My last perpetual version of ACDSee is therefore 2020. I get a subscription license to 2021. I maintain that membership for ACDSee for 5 years, assuming that they come out with a version every year and they are sufficiently beneficial that I want to upgrade. So I use the gold membership through 2022, 2023, 2024, and 2025. Now 2026 comes along and I feel that it is a nothing-burger update. So I decide to hang on to 2025. But I don't have a perpetual license, so 2025 is disabled. WillI get an upgrade pricing? I am thinking probably not! So I would now have to pay the full price for 2025 (or indeed 2026 since they may no longer sell 2025). The total spend would be 5 years of gold + full price for 2025 (or 2026) which will actually exceed just upgrading every year to 2025 and then stopping by $50 (not counting the time value of money, that would require me to bring out my financial calculator and I'm not doing that tonight).

Also, the calculus changes the longer I maintain gold. The break even point I believe is around 8 years, whereby if I stop the Gold membership and return to the perpetual license, I still do not lose out because of savings on the upgrade price each year. But there is no way to be sure what is going to happen with the software development nearly a decade out!

Any suggestions as to which makes more sense?

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