Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

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Alex
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Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by Alex » Wed Jun 10, 2020 11:47 am

Hello Simlab,

today I noticed the release of version 10. Cool!
Thank you for the discounts for existing users :)

But I got some questions about the new update / extend support options.

1. It says, free updates are included for one year if I choose the normal upgrade, so I think minor versions e.g. 10.1 and 10.2 are included like it was in the previous update cycle (If they are released within one year).
But what is the benefit if I choose "Upgrade from Composer 9" and "Extend Update Support 1 year"?
For example, the update 10.2. takes longer and is released 1 1/2 years later (end 2021), do I have to pay the pricey extend period to get the minor update?

2. If I choose to upgrade to '10 Mechanical' (currently 9 VR), is it possible to downgrade to '11 VR' in the future, if mechanical is no use to me?

Thank you!

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SimLab
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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by SimLab » Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:23 pm

Alex,

This is an excellent question.
We tried to find a good solution that works for SimLab users which are very important, and for SimLab team, a solution that allows us to release more often, and this solution does this exactly.

Most companies moved or are moving to Subscription, but we thought from user point of view, what if the user decided SimLab is not providing enough updates (which we promise will not happen, we take what we do seriously, and we really enjoy it), do I need to continue paying to use my models?

This was our answer. You get a perpetual license that you can stop paying and continue using, which protects your investment in your models.

We are also changing our release cycle, we will do more frequent releases. So when a new feature or importer is ready we release it without delaying to collect enough features to announce SP1.

This is harder for SimLab team, but allows us to provide best support in a fast technology market.

Now for the second question, we do not support switching between editions, this was done based on feedback from resellers, you do not want to build a complex matrix moving up and down it makes support and licensing very difficult, but if you really need to change edition, send to license@simlab-soft.com and they will do their best to help.

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by Alex » Wed Jun 10, 2020 8:20 pm

Hello Simlab,
thank you for your quick answers!

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Pocc
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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by Pocc » Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:30 pm

Just to add a quick comment to this. I fully agree with and support the Simlab model of purchasing a perpetual licence and then either paying for an upgrade or maintenance plan.

The main reason I opted for Simlab Composer was because of the perpetual licence and because it was locally installed.

I have 3D software which included a compulsory 'maintenance' contract of around 1/3 the software purchase price per annum - I cancelled the maintenance contract one year when the softwares 'major' annual upgrade consisted of a skin colour change - I'd paid a little over £3000 to have my icons redrawn! When I cancelled the maintenance, numerous features of the software were disabled - including the rendering package - this is what led me to search for and find Simlab.

Keep up the good work Simlab and continue to refuse to follow the lemmings off the cliff by insisting on subscription, cloud software or maintenance fees and we will continue to buy and upgrade your software - as well as spreading the word!

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by Pocc » Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:53 pm

I fully agree with and support the Simlab model of purchasing a perpetual licence and then either paying for an upgrade or maintenance plan.

The main reason I opted for Simlab Composer was because of the perpetual licence and because it was locally installed. I don't want to be held ransom by a perpetual commitment to a software brand, or have my assets on the cloud and at the mercy of someone somewhere 'pulling the plug' especially if I've invested hundreds or thousands of man hours developing my models and intellectual property.

I have a very well known 3D software which was sold with a superb rendering package and a compulsory 'maintenance' contract of around 1/3 the software purchase price per annum. We had 3 seats of this software and spent around 4000 man hours per year on creating models, drawings, reners and animations.

I cancelled the maintenance contract one year when the softwares 'major' annual upgrade consisted of a skin colour change - I'd paid a little over £3000 to have my icons redrawn! The level of the software at that point more than satisfied our business needs. When I cancelled the maintenance, numerous features of the software were disabled remotely - including the rendering package. At this point I had invested approximately 500 man hours in render models that I could no longer load and access - this is what led me to search for and find Simlab as it was not 'Ransomware' by subscription.

Keep up the good work Simlab and continue to refuse to follow the lemmings off the cliff by insisting on subscription, cloud software or maintenance fees and we will continue to buy and upgrade your software - as well as spreading the word!

My own personal prediction is that the practice of locking software customers out of their intellectual property when they stop paying the ransom to use their software will be challenged in the courts at sometime. If I had of had the corporate size to take on Dassault re mis-selling Visualize (apparently the remote disabling when cancelling maintenace was buried in the EULA somewhere) I would have. I'd much rather hand my money over to an honest, software house that treats it's customers as people rather than cash cows - and I have to say my dealings with Simlab have shown that they are honourable in this.

One thing I think could be communicated better is when Simlab do a release. I've often ended up several updates behind because I was unaware that a new update has been eleased, maybe just make it part of your release routine to post on the forum that a new update is released?

I know I started by saying this was a quick comment and it's ended up as an essay - well it's ended up more as a testimonial to Simlab and I just want it to be known that we, your user community, appreciate what makes you stand out from the huge corporations and why we continue to support and promote you. We might not say it often enough in business, but thank you Simlab.

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by SimLab » Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:31 pm

What was described here is our rational for this update. With a new license or upgrade the user will get access to all updates for one year, and after that she/he can decide if the value provided justifies investing in the updates.
If you decied not to get new updates you will be able to get access of your models that you invested time in creating.

One last comment about news, we usually send a newsletter informing users about new releases, we delay it for few days after releasing on the website, because releasing a major release takes huge amount of work, so we hope when we announce it to have more of the small things done.

Also having users installing SimLab Composer before announcement, allows us to catch issues with smaller install base before sharing with all users.

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by bbuxton » Thu Jun 18, 2020 10:06 am

Pocc wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:30 pm
Just to add a quick comment to this. I fully agree with and support the Simlab model of purchasing a perpetual licence and then either paying for an upgrade or maintenance plan.

The main reason I opted for Simlab Composer was because of the perpetual licence and because it was locally installed.

I have 3D software which included a compulsory 'maintenance' contract of around 1/3 the software purchase price per annum - I cancelled the maintenance contract one year when the softwares 'major' annual upgrade consisted of a skin colour change - I'd paid a little over £3000 to have my icons redrawn! When I cancelled the maintenance, numerous features of the software were disabled - including the rendering package - this is what led me to search for and find Simlab.

Keep up the good work Simlab and continue to refuse to follow the lemmings off the cliff by insisting on subscription, cloud software or maintenance fees and we will continue to buy and upgrade your software - as well as spreading the word!
This is hard to comprehend. Actually Simlab's perpetual upgrade model is pretty bad compared to other software. Not all software has switched to subscription only and not all of those are terribly priced)
True the license is perpetual but if you miss one upgrade you need to purchase the software again as the license will no longer be upgradeable. The Simlab Sharing licenses are also restrictive and expensive.
I was not so impressed with Simlab Mechanical 9 so waited for the entire release to see if was worth staying onboard. I could have updated in March and got v10 for free but SimlabSoft kept this very quiet. Now I look and realise that I have missed out on very little, and am glad to have saved my money. Simlab is great software but it really just for those of us too lazy to do the same work in Unreal (plus DataSmith). The current 25% sale on new licenses is just to introduce the new 25% price rise.
Goodbye Simlab

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by SimLab » Thu Jun 18, 2020 11:54 am

Few notes here:

Most software is moving to subscription this is a fact, we understand few still did not, but you should be fair, it is easy to see subscription is the trend, with this model we want to have the power to continuously have the ability to add features, while user has the power to stop payment and continuously use models they spent time creating.

Users of Composer 8, we gave them until end of June to upgrade, the have the option to utilize the discount that is available during the month, so this is a good deal for SimLab Composer 8 users we did not leave them in the the dark.

If a user stopped paying for upgrades, and decided to continue after stopping we will provide them with a path, we always did for SimLab users, and we will always do.

We understand many other tools exist, and we love 3D software, but we think we save time, and provide value that justifies the existence of SimLab Composer.

We hope to grow SimLab Composer user base, but our main way to do this is to keep current SimLab Composer users happy, we are sorry if anyone decided to leave, if so we will do more to get you back.

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by SimLab » Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:08 pm

One last note I wanted to talk about Sharing option in SimLab.

This is completely optional it does not affect any functionality of SimLab Composer or viewer.
Everything will work fine without sharing license.

But what does it give the user:
1- The ability to synchronize VR models between multiple devices.
2- Sharing VR models, for a company in a trade show, without any links new models will be available in the VR catalog.
3- It gives the user the ability to host a webgl, or 360 grid in one click and to get a URL that can be shared with others, no server, or special WEB expertise will be needed.

This license covers those cloud capabilities, nothing affecting core SimLab Composer.

For $10 per month the user can upload 10 models, 2GB of space and 2 Pair 1 extra device.

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Re: Simlab 10 Update cycle and extend support option

Post by Pocc » Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:27 pm

The above posts prove the point exactly. If you 'choose' to leave Simlab, you can continue to work at whatever version you currently have without spending any more money. 'Choose' to leave the subscription based software and you can kiss goodbye to your models and assets that you've spent man hours working on instantly.

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