Wouldn't it be nice if SolidWorks would consider developing a varying pricing plan for subscription services that could work for small business, sole traders companies and people, like myself, that have to find the funds themselves to enable them to progress further with their careers.
I've been using SolidWorks under my own professional licence, until recently, now premium licence since, since 2011, but I was familiar with the program since 2009. I have lost track of the amount of training programmes that I had to purchase in order to obtain a fairly average amount of knowledge of the programme. I have attained the cswa with which I was very proud of and I still am. I continue to try to develop enough speed in order to pass the cswp.
The one thing that is praying on my mind is the cost to able to continue using the programme. Not just to its full capability but just too able to use it. I have now seen the non support of the windows program XP. I am also seeing the SolidWorks 2012 version not compatible with windows 8, even though people may be trying to force it to work. As far as I can see it is the start of a trend that will push out the small business and sole traders from the subscription service completely, and they will try to manage with the programme as long as possible until at some stage they will need that particular driver or they will need some VAR technical help, which may then lead onto looking into other programmes to do the work.
I was recently at a SolidWorks introduction and saw a few guys with their own companies, or part of companies that were considering moving to SolidWorks. One of them was a company looking into designing curtain rails. It made me think about the initial outlay in order to get their product into manufacture, and at what stage they thought they would start getting their money back. I believe their maybe services to lease out the software, which I’m sure helps the small business, but not so much the sole trader, or freelancer.
I purchased my SolidWorks with my own money. I chose to buy the original software because I believed it to be the software to use to enable me to develop further through my remotely operated vehicles career. My company would not help with this personal licence, although they would supply my work area with a licence to enable me to continue learning and producing drawings for the systems that I work on. They could not give me a licence for my own personal laptop, so I decided to take the chance and foot the bill personally.
I am now considering going back to subscriptions at the end of the year even though it’s probably going to cost very close to £2000 if not more. I don't have my own business I'm not a sole trader, I have personally funded for my entire SolidWorks programme. All the books, DVDs, on line courses and downloads that I have also bought which may have totalled over £12,000 at least.
I’m sure there are many people that are dropping out of subscriptions, but if I had spent a further £2000 on books, DVD and download support maybe that is a sum which SolidWorks has missed out on at the training days?
You have to remember I have no dedicated income coming from anything that I do in SolidWorks, only from my current job role which at the moment can support the ongoing price.
My main fear is that I will not be able to continue on subscriptions because of the cost. As I said above SolidWorks has removed the support for XP and not supporting 2012 on windows 8. Does this mean in a few years my programme will not be supported and in the worse case not work on future operating systems, or be potential show very poor performance because of no subscriptions support.
I want my SolidWorks programme to be an investment for my career, not for it to dry up because I can’t afford to run it.
That is what happened to Multisim many years ago when I bought electronics workbench and took it up many years later, when the programme wouldn’t work. I had paid an initial £300, small drop in the ocean to £12000.
Any constructive comments are welcome.