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Extremely Disappointed, Existing Customers must Purchase Affinity V2


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I am extremely disappointed to see that Affinity requires existing customers to purchase the V2 upgrade to the products they have already purchased. I have always been a fan of Affinity, but this seriously skews my affinity of the company.

I believe Affinity products are still great and offered at great prices. I love that Affinity hasn't bowed to the greed of more-money with subscription-only services such as the big graphic software companies that moved in that direction, which I believe was a strong reason behind the creation of Affinity, and is most definitely a big reason for it's success. BUT, the decision to make existing customers repurchase all of the products again to get V2 is an extremely poor one. I would suspect many customers will stick with V1 simply because they will not be manipulated to purchase the products again, not because they don't want them, but because they are angry with Affinity.

I do a lot of music production, and in the music industry there are many users who refuse to pay for subscription services. They want to own what they purchase, just like so many who have purchased Affinity products. But they prefer to purchase software from companies that don't  keep charging them for upgrades. My Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) of choice is Logic Pro X and I have never been charged for an upgrade; in fact, the community of Logic users looks forward with great anticipation and excitement to the new upgrades. This is what makes Logic users such huge fans of the software and the company—when the company rewards its customers with great upgrades at no additional cost; the company supports their customers. There are many third party companies that offer plug-ins for Logic, and some of these companies, such as Waves are getting a bad rap in the music community, because they require purchasing an upgrade license every few years in order to continue getting upgrades for the products they bought; they will lose many customers, but for those they keep, at least they are offered an incentive as a customer. Other companies such as iZotope treat their existing customers to deeply discounted loyalty offers for upgrades and newly released software and their customers are happy to pay a discounted fee to upgrade, and the company retains their admiration and respect. But Affinity, just insulted their entire customer base. Good luck with that.

Once, a huge advocate of Affinity, my admiration, respect, and excitement for Affinity and it's products has now plummeted. For those who think this is too harsh, please realize, this isn't about customers, like me, saving a buck—it's about Affinity wanting to show appreciation for the loyal customers who made them successful. I mourn the direction Affinity has chosen.

Sincerely

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1 minute ago, free2worship said:

Logic Pro X and I have never been charged for an upgrade

This is an outlier in the software world.  If my memory serves me correctly there was one charge once for an upgrade, but that may have been from 7 to X. Final Cut and Motion are two pieces of software I have used for years and years with no upgrade charge. Consider though how much Apple makes from its phones, they are awash in cash.

Mac Pro (Late 2013) Mac OS 12.7.2 
Affinity Designer 2.3.1 | Affinity Photo 2.3.1 | Affinity Publisher 2.3.1 | Beta versions as they appear.

I have never mastered color management, period, so I cannot help with that.

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4 minutes ago, free2worship said:

I've never been charged to get the new iOS or OSX upgrade

You eventually will be, when the hardware you have no longer supports the newest versions and you need to buy new hardware to run them.  Apple was originally a hardware company, and they have in part become a services company, but they have never really been a software company - they make their money on their hardware and now on their services, and provide the software to support what actually brings them income.

Serif on the other hand is a software company, so that is their primary source of income.  They need to charge for it at some point or they won't be able to continue as a company.

The fact that they are charging for version 2 is not in any way surprising or unexpected - they have told us all along that they would do that, and even now in the FAQs on their site, they spell out that the updates from 2.x to 2.y are free, but there will be a charge again when version 3 comes out.

This is a common practice among most software companies, and is extremely fair.

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13 minutes ago, free2worship said:

I am extremely disappointed to see that Affinity requires existing customers to purchase the V2 upgrade to the products they have already purchased.

With all due respect, but your position and arguments are ridiculous. Every software upgrade offered by a commercial company comes with a price. You can now purchase the app(s) at a 40% discount and that's quite generous.

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Software companies always charged for version upgrades. Remember Adobe before the subscription model? About every 2-3 years you had to purchase the next version. If you had CS2 you had to pay to get CS3 if you wanted the updates. On the Macromedia side I had just purchase FreeHand 7 then 8 came out soon after and it wasn't free but was offered at a discount. 

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I am on the opposite spectrum and rather perplexed by some of the surprised responses I see about the paid upgrade path. Frankly, I would be shocked if Affinity were able to continue dominating Adobe CC simply by slinging books and art packs. 

I paid for copies of all Affinity apps nearly 7 years ago and was happy to purchase supplemental content to support them.

Like you, I refuse to pay for a subscription model on core workflow tools. The alternative to that (the norm of yesteryear) was pay-per-update. Remember how Adobe used to charge 499.00 every few years?

With Affinity, I think I paid maybe 150.00 for all 3 apps, but was happy to pay for them again for my new Mac when moving from my Windows machine because the cost was so affordable. Since I haven't been charged for an app update in 7 years, and ran out of ways to support Affinity in the shop due to purchasing all books and art packs, V2 was an instant buy.

And honestly 99.00 is a deal, yet again. And it's one time payment, with years of updates to come with new tool. New features like live meshwarping are likely only possible because of an entire engine rewrite. 

I do music production on the side as well and I can tell you that Logix Pro X is free because it's subsidized by the price of their computers, which stop receiving updates to the newest OS every few years - forcing users to upgrade. It surely isn't free. Also Logic rarely releases major updates with ground breaking features. Either way, every other DAW save FL studio charges at least 199 / year for point releases. 

iZotope (one of the most expensive luxury plugin companies) sells dozens of different products as single purchases and bundle for hundreds or even thousands of dollars with expensive semi-yearly releases. What was the cost of the latest Ozone 9 suite? 800 bucks? What was the upgrade path? 400? On something like a 2 year release cycle.

Here is Affinity with a 99.00 upgrade path for all core apps with a track record of several years of major upgrades. Since when did "own your software" mean lifetime updates?  

Anyways, I am delighted. Sorry you are not.

 

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Still love the products and agree the price is fair—especially for new customers. I still think Affinity should offer a loyalty rate (i.e. lower than the public sale price) to those who purchased V1. Not all customers use Affinity for business, many who use it for their own enjoyment and creativity, for them it's definitely a downer to have to buy it again.

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Just my 2¢ here. Affinity is charging very reasonable prices for their software, and the 40% off can be called the upgrade path for existing customers.

I'd rather pony up a modest amount every few years than get the painful news that an app I've spent years learning (or its developer) is going away. Been the recipient of that news more than once, and ugh, looking to never again be in that place. 

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2 minutes ago, free2worship said:

Still love the products and agree the price is fair—especially for those who freelance, own a business, or work for a business. But for those who use it for their own enjoyment and creativity it's definitely a downer to have to buy it again to get the newest features.

I can understand how you can feel that way. I throw a ton of money at hobby software and hardware for my sound design. I was hoping to upgrade to Komplete 14 but because it's a hobby I can't justify the cost. I'm not upset with Native Instruments, though.

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43 minutes ago, Old Bruce said:

This is an outlier in the software world.  If my memory serves me correctly there was one charge once for an upgrade, but that may have been from 7 to X. Final Cut and Motion are two pieces of software I have used for years and years with no upgrade charge. Consider though how much Apple makes from its phones, they are awash in cash.

Logic has always been very expensive to upgrade until X came out; 7 to 8, 8 to 9, and 9 to X all cost money to upgrade. (8 to 9 was especially egregious because it was an expensive upgrade that added very little, but it was forced on people who were using the GarageBand Jam Packs!)

X is very much an outlier in that more has changed in any of the individual point releases (10.1 -> 10.2 and so on) than there usually was between the major releases, and that those point releases haven't required upgrade pricing. I'm pretty sure Apple sees Logic as a loss-leader to encourage people to keep on buying new Apple hardware.

And Logic is absolutely an outlier in the audio world, too; I can't think of any other software that doesn't require a paid upgrade for a major functionality change. Even the indie darling Reaper costs money for major version updates, as do Cubase, Bitwig, and Ableton. And ProTools, the "industry standard," charges a subscription.

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7 minutes ago, nolamike said:

Just my 2¢ here. Affinity is charging very reasonable prices for their software, and the 40% off can be called the upgrade path for existing customers.

I'd rather pony up a modest amount every few years than get the painful news that an app I've spent years learning (or its developer) is going away. Been the recipient of that news more than once, and ugh, looking to never again be in that place. 

Totally agree - or worse, get bought out by Adobe who very recently purchased Figma. 

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On the actual topic: personally I'm annoyed at having to pay for it again mostly because V1 came with the prospect of replacing Photoshop but it had so many UX issues that I ended up using it very little (and had to keep paying for Photoshop after all). V2 finally fixes most of the issues I had, and the remaining ones I've run into are easy enough to work around. While I wouldn't mind getting a (years late) refund on the V1 purchases (including the iPad version which I bought and used, like, once), the total price on V1+V2 is still less than a year of Photoshop.

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3 minutes ago, _fluffy said:

On the actual topic: personally I'm annoyed at having to pay for it again mostly because V1 came with the prospect of replacing Photoshop but it had so many UX issues that I ended up using it very little (and had to keep paying for Photoshop after all). V2 finally fixes most of the issues I had, and the remaining ones I've run into are easy enough to work around. While I wouldn't mind getting a (years late) refund on the V1 purchases (including the iPad version which I bought and used, like, once), the total price on V1+V2 is still less than a year of Photoshop.

I can understand that. My only small quibble with the V2 release is having to manage backwards compatibility for existing files. I will probably make copies of everything until V2 has my full confidence. 

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