19th Feb, 2008

PLS_Toolbox/Solo Maintenance Program

You may have noticed that Eigenvector has recently changed the way software upgrades are handled. Our old model was based on the version number of the software. With PLS_Toolbox, we had always charged for every other upgrade of version number of 0.1 or greater. For instance, if you bought PLS_Toolbox 1.5, you got 2.0 for free, but had to pay to upgrade to 2.1. Once upgraded to 2.1, you got 3.0 for free, and so on. This was a little confusing to users at times, because the version didn’t go up in even increments, and the time between upgrades was variable as well (see A History of PLS_Toolbox).

We’re now moving to a maintenance contract model that specifies a time period for support, including free upgrades and maintenance releases. Why the change? Well, first off, we’re now planning on releasing upgrades on a more regular schedule, approximately twice a year. We have a long list of new features and methods that we’ll be adding to PLS_Toolbox and Solo, and we want to get those to you as soon as possible. So version number changes are going to accelerate. Secondly, we have a large number of users who would prefer a model that provided predictable costs. This way they can budget for continued upgrades and maintenance. Beyond that, The MathWorks uses this model for MATLAB and users are accustomed to it.

So how are we going to price it? The general rule is that maintenance will cost approximately 20% of the new license cost for industrial users ($199/year for single PLS_Toolbox licenses) and 25% a year for academics ($99/year). Users can purchase yearly maintenance by logging into their account and selecting it from the list under the Buy/Upgrade tab.

For industrial users, an upgrade under the old system ($495) is the same cost as 2.5 years of maintenance under the new system. But with our more rapid pace of development, we expect you’ll see at least 4 significant upgrades in that time. So the value to our customers should be better than ever.

The policy for Solo will mirror the policy for PLS_Toolbox.

Please write if you have questions!


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