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First off, its great to see another contender in the ring against Adobe.

 

Microsoft tried and failed with there Expression Studio software, but then again its not the first mistake they have ever made.

 

You guys have some solid programs and your Affinity Project looks great, but why just Mac? 

 

Hear(read) me out, I have a big love for the Linux Community. Ubuntu is the distro I use a lot on my laptop, its clean, its simple and has came a long way from the days of old. With the new Software Center and Unity Bar you can't really go wrong. The only thing Ubuntu lacks is big business software.

 

There seems to be this thing about software you pay money for over something that is free, the free stuff just doesn't give people the same feeling as bought. So here is what I suggest, why not develop for Linux (Ubuntu)?

 

I know plenty of people in design that if they knew a solid design application was out for Ubuntu they'd switch. It's gawna happen soon Serif, Steam(games) are encouraging people to develop their games for Linux for SteamOS. these game will be available on the Steam client for Ubuntu.

 

Think about it, the more Steam pushes Linux, the more younger people will choose the free Linux OS distros that support steam clients. This means in the future there will be a pretty good opening for a solid design studio on Linux. Being the Adobe of the Linux world wouldn't be a bad thing, since the power house Adobe refuse to support Linux.

 

https://forums.adobe.com/message/4728888

 

Think about it Serif.

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It would cost in excess of £1,000,000 to develop and maintain the Affinity range of applications on Linux. As soon as we are confident we could recoup the cost then we would consider it.

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This has been mentioned elsewhere in this forum; I am a big fan of the Gnome 3 version of Ubuntu: Pear OS 5 that would have been too cool for words if Serif would make a presence (sadly WINE was fruitless).


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It would cost in excess of £1,000,000 to develop

 

I see. So it's gonna stay exclusive, because Mac users are special. That's sad. 

 

Honestly, there's plenty of people on Linux who's absolutely fine with paid software. There's also plenty of developers who dislikes Apple products and who stuck with Windows because they depends on some Mac/PC tools, like Photoshop, for instance. And the only reason you don't see a healthy market on Linux because everyone is affraid of going first and there's still nothing better than Gimp available yet. But Steam proves at the same time, that there are people willing to pay. Let's believe for a moment, that rebuilding interface from the ground up would cost you a million pounds extra. That's about 25-28.6k copies to be sold. Sounds absolutely possible for what promo page claims it to be. I personally would buy that multiple times just to show the support.

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I see. So it's gonna stay exclusive, because Mac users are special. That's sad.   I think you have the wrong end of this, Mac users are not special, please do not create exclusivity where non exists.  Windows users already have their software, DrawPlus, PagePlus, PhotoPlus etc.  All that Serif are doing IMHO is to broaden their client base.  Unix is still a comparatively small user base and so quite rightly Serif are concentrating on where the profit is to be made.  And lets not forget, that's what businesses exist for - to make profit!

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Why pick a OS or platform that has no commercial software, then complain that there is no commercial software....?

 

It also stands to reason that the typical demographic for people that chose Linux are less interested in this sort of software.  The software is already available on other platforms, but they have still chosen Linux.  So, it is far more difficult to predict the potential returns for porting to the platform - there is a greater risk.  The platform has also been around for a long time, and has still not picked up much traction in this commercial software arena.

 

To date, I've not seen anyone present any hard proof that the paying Linux market really exists.  A lot of private opinion, but please point to some cold hard numbers.  Give a real example of a comparable commercial success.

 

It may be a Catch-22 situation, but if you want this software, you already know where it is available. Don't blame us for your choice of OS.


SerifLabs team - Affinity Developer
  • Software engineer  -  Photographer  -  Guitarist  -  Philosopher
  • iMac 27" Retina 5K (Late 2015), 4.0GHz i7, AMD Radeon R9 M395
  • MacBook (Early 2015), 1.3GHz Core M, Intel HD 5300
  • iPad Pro 10.5", 256GB

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To date, I've not seen anyone present any hard proof that the paying Linux market really exists.

 A lot of private opinion, but please point to some cold hard numbers.  Give a real example of a comparable commercial success.

 

A lot of expensive High End 3D graphics applications are available on Linux (as well as on Win+Mac).

They are in use in high level Studios around the world.

 

My painful gut feeling is that you at Serif only have the "classic" 2D graphics segment on the radar, but the VFX and CAD market

needs 2D graphics apps too. One needs consequent 32 bit per channel support here – at this point there's no indication that you

also develop with this potential userbase in mind.

 

Some examples for propritary + commercial Linux software, most of these programs cost four digits for one seat, some even 5.

 

The full The Foundry product range: Nuke, Mari, Katana, Modo and others

The full Next Limit product range: Maxwell, Realflow, XFlow

Autodesk Maya,  Mudbox, Motion Builder and others

SideFX Houdini

Blackmagic Fusion

3DCoat

 

 

I am not even a regular Linux user, but this statement really deserved a correction.

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@away

That may be correct, but you are still not addressing the market potential for this app.  As I said before - you still haven't provided hard figures about how many units these companies actually sell.

 

High end applications are a pretty narrow market.  It is possible to justify unit costs in thousands of $, rather than tens.  This is required to make developing these apps profitable since the unit sales are always going to be very low.  There is also next to no cross industry use for these apps - they serve very specific industries.

 

It's all well saying that these industries need certain tools. Identifying a need isn't the only justification required.

 

So - if we released on Unix, would we be able to charge $500 a unit for people in the high end 3D market? I very much doubt it.  This app is available for $50 on OSX.  We may sell a few hundred copies to this market.  So, where can we guarantee to make up the rest of the sales that we need to make this commercially viable?

 

So - my point still stands - show a COMPARABLE commercial success.  I am talking about an app that markets in a similar price bracket, and has gained wide market (not niche market) share.


SerifLabs team - Affinity Developer
  • Software engineer  -  Photographer  -  Guitarist  -  Philosopher
  • iMac 27" Retina 5K (Late 2015), 4.0GHz i7, AMD Radeon R9 M395
  • MacBook (Early 2015), 1.3GHz Core M, Intel HD 5300
  • iPad Pro 10.5", 256GB

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So - my point still stands - show a COMPARABLE commercial success.  I am talking about an app that markets in a similar price bracket, and has gained wide market (not niche market) share.

 

You know that I can not deliver hard numbers. None of us can.

No Software manufacturer publishes details on licenses sold, let alone their distribution to various operating systems.

I just wanted to  state that a payed market for Linux products clearly does exist, which you denied.

 

t's pretty obvious that Photoshop has a larger market than say Maya – but with some hundred thousand units the latter

sure isn't exactly a niche application – also Modo is very widely in use. Then again there's  3DCoat, made by just a handful

of people, which costs less than 400 dollars – they  had support for Linux almost from the beginning on (and very likely

with less than millions just for Linux in the pot).

Most of the mentioned apps admittedly use a common interface for all OS's and don't waste precious developer time

on making the program behave diffferently on every operating system, so that they feel "native".

 

So - if we released on Unix, would we be able to charge $500 a unit for people in the high end 3D market? I very much doubt it.

 

We seem to look at things from very different perspectives. If you manage to make a multi OS Suite which can cope

with the smaller Adobe Suites (PS,Ai, ID) I would consider $ 500 perfectly fine, I don't understand your current price point anyway.

There's a lot of professional users who have payed thousands for Adobe products: They are not searching for a cheaper product

than Adobe CC but for an equally good product suite which comes with perpetual licenses and gives continous access to intellectual

property.

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I just can’t seem to understand what’s this fanboyism with Linux especially when you're a casual user.

 

- Linux is only a viable alternative if you’re a developer for android or server related services, maybe some other minor scenarios. Some 3D software is indeed supported on it but only because big studios pay a lot of money for licenses.

 

- Too much fragmentation. Supporting only Ubuntu will anger other distro users. And for Serif to support more distros means more cost & code fragmentation.

 

- Cross platform UI code is definitely possible and will indeed reduce costs significantly....at the expense of user experience. There is this other photo editor launched a few months ago(Ormmrrr or something). It looks terrible on mac, bad retina UI scaling, and very crash prone. Cross platform = Jack of All Trades, Master of None. Check Java vs. C++ btw if you’re still not convinced. And before you bring out QT as a UI solution, that has limitations/issues of it’s own.

 

- MODO is used indeed. But how many users again? And it’s $1800 or so + VAT in the EU.

 

- Steam is nice on Linux... Where exactly are most AAA games? Can’t seem to see them on Linux... Or on the other hand, how do Linux Indie sales compare to Mac or Windows ones?

 

 

If you want for Serif to consider porting do some actions that provide some hard facts/numbers. Maybe a kickstarter to raise the money or a big survey/poll to see how many people on Linux would actually buy it? Those ideas have been mentioned before in some other thread on this forum but you’re welcome to make something of your own. 

 

Right now Linux is not a viable business expansion option for many companies, not just Serif. And this state of being won’t change too soon either. Getting mad at Serif or any other individual who say it’s not worth it, won’t make Linux more business success proof then before. Linux for a couple of reasons, it’s its own enemy, and we can’t help it.

 

P.S. Yes I tried to use LINUX on my 3D workstation... thing won’t even install the updated graphic drivers from NVIDIA. Wait why do I have to install stuff from the Terminal in 2015? ;)


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@00Ghz All I wanted to do is correct Ben's initial statement: There clearly is a market for commercial software on Linux.
As soon as a statement is proven wrong people start saying that this doesn't count / that this is an entirely other industry / that one can not compare things.

At Autodesk, at the Foundry one will have been in the same situation before. Is it really worth it?
What's pretty obvious is that Autodesk as one of the largest software makers in the world doesn't port + support the outcome for a mere handful of users.

It has to pay off, they are the first to discontinue products, as they did with Softimage and many other products. Thus far it seems to work out.

 

That all being said – to make me consider Affinity it was enough to port to the most widely used operating system.

Have a nice day all, I'm away!

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You know that I can not deliver hard numbers. None of us can.

No Software manufacturer publishes details on licenses sold, let alone their distribution to various operating systems.

I just wanted to  state that a payed market for Linux products clearly does exist, which you denied.

 

 

I didn't deny that people will pay money for apps on Linux - you are still missing the point.  There is a paid market on many platforms - doesn't mean that all software should be made readily available.  Is there a definite paid market for THIS app?  You cant possibly say, because you have no data to base it on.

 

The question is whether the paid market is wide enough to justify our interest - and you have just identified a market with low volume very high cost.  There is no comparison with what we are doing.

 

We have pitched our products to be accessible to a wide market.  If we chased only people willing to spend $2000 our apps would have to be absolutely tailored for them at the expense of other potential markets.  Then, if those few people decided it wasn't worth the hefty price tag, we'd be left with a very expensive lemon.

 

I would like to do some 3D work as my hobby, or even perhaps for a couple of clients that want a 3D logo for their website, but there is no way I'm going to stump up $2000 for the software to do it!  So - how does that compare to a $50 photo editor?  But, at that price point you need to know that it is going to sell in volume.


SerifLabs team - Affinity Developer
  • Software engineer  -  Photographer  -  Guitarist  -  Philosopher
  • iMac 27" Retina 5K (Late 2015), 4.0GHz i7, AMD Radeon R9 M395
  • MacBook (Early 2015), 1.3GHz Core M, Intel HD 5300
  • iPad Pro 10.5", 256GB

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@Ben although the 3D graphics market is a lot smaller than the entire graphic design market
quite a few apps you keep calling niche products likely sell far more units than Serif.

Maya is used in the majority of films you have watched in Cinema since the early nineties.

I have not been yelling "Port to Linux, forget anything else" here, did I?
I was just surprised that you guys obviously aren't at all aware of the role Linux plays in VFX
and couldn't resist leaving a comment.

I'm afraid I'm looking in the wrong place here. Affinity was announced as "unashamedly pro"
but now you insist on the $50 hobbyist/prosumers market + price-tag and on thinking small.

The Suite of graphics apps which had the potential to make me leave Adobe simply had to be
available on at least Win+Mac for compatibility reasons –  Linux was a welcome addition.
A 96 bit graphics engine, consequently exposed to the user again was mandatory, Nodes as an
alternative UI to Layers were again welcome. With anything less I can stick to CS6.

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Good call, Ash


SerifLabs team - Affinity Developer
  • Software engineer  -  Photographer  -  Guitarist  -  Philosopher
  • iMac 27" Retina 5K (Late 2015), 4.0GHz i7, AMD Radeon R9 M395
  • MacBook (Early 2015), 1.3GHz Core M, Intel HD 5300
  • iPad Pro 10.5", 256GB

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