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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 11 2023 :  09:52:17 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I see that there is a personal annual subscription license for a yearly maintenance of $129, and an option for a perpetual license of $149.

What is the perpetual license? I do not have to pay annual subscription fees?

Thank you.

feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
18798 Posts

Posted - May 11 2023 :  12:03:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
With the perpetual license you can keep on using your current version, the latest version of Visual Assist that your license supports, once the license period is up. But in order to get any new features or bug fixes after the license period is up, you will need to purchase a new perpetual license.

So it makes sense from a cost point of view to go for the subscription license if you are expecting to use Visual Assist for more than a year, and keep up to date with the newer features and bug fixes.

I hope this makes sense.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 11 2023 :  12:16:24 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I always thought the purpose of the annual license was to get new updates, and if you didn't pay for it you didn't get new updates but were able to continue using your old version.
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feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
18798 Posts

Posted - May 12 2023 :  07:05:43 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yes. I think the idea here is to encourage people to take out a subscription, which is regular sales, while making sure there is no gap in your VA support, so no having to check if your license supports the latest version, new features and bug fixes.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 17 2023 :  1:57:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Do you offer a monthly subscription? $129 per year could be about $11 per month?
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feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
18798 Posts

Posted - May 18 2023 :  07:18:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Not currently, no. Is this a cost question, or are you in a position where you want to start and stop using VA on a month by month basis?

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 18 2023 :  09:29:04 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You can buy an entire an Microsoft Office 365 license for $6.99/month.
The full version of Visual Studio is $45/month for the professional option ($540/year, and that gives you access to nearly every developer and customer tool Microsoft has ever created for perpetual use after the license term ends).

VAX corporate is $279, or $23.33/month, more than half the cost of Visual Studio itself.
VAX personal is $129, or $10.75/month, 23.9% the cost of Visual Studio itself.

I think a VAX license of $4.99/month ($60/year, 11.1%) would be the upper range for the utility it gives.

You no longer release as many updates. You provide this forum and help people, but legit issues are given a case number and are sometimes later fixed. How many cases are there that have been fixed? And how many have been assigned but not been fixed?

I also think Whole Tomato made a mistake selling Visual Assist X. Some of my reasons are thus: Back in the 2000s, Geek.com and TGDaily.com (a daily version of Tom's Hardware) were two websites I wrote articles for. They were distinct and unique in their online presence. Both were sold around 2008 to parent entities that vowed not to change anything, and they didn't for a time. But if you go to either of those sites today they're the tiniest fraction of what they once were. The value-added product and content given daily by the team there, through the research, the contacts, the network, the insider information, was all replaced with a compromised suite of articles distributed from a central source, all for the sake of money. They also started introducing article content that we never would've allowed, which further demeaned the site.

I feel that's where Whole Tomato and VAX are heading. It's the slow road to a loss of product distinctiveness, personal goals, internal vision, to be replaced with a new licensing model to maximize profits over utility.

I hope I'm wrong, but we'll see over time.

Edited by - foxmuldr on May 18 2023 09:33:37 AM
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feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
18798 Posts

Posted - May 18 2023 :  11:02:57 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
First up, I want to be clear, I am no expert on business models but as I understand it Microsoft heavily subsidise their developer tools to encourage developers to write software for Windows. A very reasonable and sensible approach from a big company in my opinion. In contrast Visual Assist is a small company and we don't have other products bringing in profits that we can use to subsidize VA.

I know we are part of a larger company, but my understanding is that each component is expected to function as a viable business.

We do aim, and work hard, to make sure that VA offers good value for money for professional developers, people who spend most of their working day inside Visual Studio.

Where I can provide a solution, or a work around for a problem, I do, but many problems, and basically all feature requests simply require code changes. These don't happen instantly, so I put in a case, or update a case. Some get resolved more quickly, some need longer, it depends partly on how complex they are.

As for the change of company ownership, many of the same staff are still here, and we take pride in Visual Assist and what it is capable of.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 18 2023 :  12:20:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You should have pride in VAX and Whole Tomato on the whole. VAX has been a wonderful tool. I was introduced to it by co-workers while working on a C++ project in the mid-2000s. I've used it continuously ever since. My developer life would not be the same without it. When I use other tools lacking some of the functionality of VAX I pine for it. The same is true of me using The SemWare Editor text editor, which I was introduced to in 1987 when it was QEdit. It is so fast and has such a powerful on-the-fly macro language that my developer life would not be the same without it. The author, Sammy E. Mitchell, is an online friend of mine for decades.

I wish your company and product well. I hope you all are able to remain autonomous and are not driven away from your legacy of providing a powerful tool toward some kind of money goals.

Edited by - foxmuldr on May 18 2023 12:22:48 PM
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foxmuldr
Tomato Guru

USA
390 Posts

Posted - May 18 2023 :  12:26:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
FWIW, my company is not willing to continue paying for VAX for me, nor to buy it for other developers, because of the expense.

You might find that you increase in volume by lowering your price, thereby keeping your income the same even though it costs less per developer. That target of $5/month seems like a good target for that kind of larger audience in my opinion. But, I am also no expert on business models. I can just relay what I see.
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