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Monday, June 1, 2009

Autodesk 2010 Legacy Promotion & Retirement Promotion Pricing and Comparison - Upgrade now before it's too late.

Today begins the annual migration of the soon to be extinct animal the Autodesk Laggard. These rare and fascinating creatures hibernate for up to 5 years before coming out of the wild to mate with the growing Early Adopter species. It is fascinating to watch these two species interact out of their natural habitats. While the Early Adopter is lightning fast and exhibits a cunning quickness to adopt to it's surroundings, the Laggard with it's thick protective shell and small webbed feet. To lure the Laggards out of their shells, Autodesk has begun their Legacy promotion. Here are the rules: For most Autodesk products from release 14 to 2006, you can purchase a new seat at a 40% discount of the retail price when you purchase subscription. The standard Legacy pricing is 30% off of the retail price with subscription.

The other part of the promotion (which makes no sense to me because of the new Simplified Pricing program beginning next March) is a 20% discount without subscription.
Lets do the math so it all makes sense.

  • AutoCAD is $3995 for a new seat.
  • Annual upgrades are $600 per version 20% discount = $799 ($3196)
  • Legacy Promotion without subscription through 7/17/09 30% discount = $1199 ($2797 + $450 Sub = $3247)
  • Standard Legacy Pricing 40% discount = $1598 ($2397 + $450 Sub = $2847)
  • Legacy Promotion with subscription through 7/17/09 50% discount = $1997 ($1997 + $450 Sub = $2448)

Next years standard upgrade pricing
Next, for comparison purposes if you have one of the following and had upgraded each year: In parenthesis, I've added the $600 to upgrade to 2011 for Subscription comparison
  • AutoCAD 14 {to 2010 is 9 versions @ $600/yr} $5400 ($6000)
  • AutoCAD 2000 {to 2010 is 8 versions@ $600/yr} $4800 ($5400)
  • AutoCAD 2002 {to 2010 is 7 versions@ $600/yr} $4200 ($4800)
  • AutoCAD 2004 {to 2010 is 6 versions@ $600/yr} $3600 ($4200)
  • AutoCAD 2005 {to 2010 is 5 versions@ $600/yr} $3000 ($3600)
  • AutoCAD 2006 {to 2010 is 4 versions@ $600/yr} $2400 ($3000) I
f you have AutoCAD 2006 and did the 40% promotion, your price would be $2847 for a savings of $153 compared to if you had been upgrading each year. 2005 40% savings $753 2004 40% savings $1353 I'm very confused as to the point of the 20% Legacy promotion without subscription, especially in consideration of next year's Simplified Pricing Program (SPP).

Let's do the math. You pay $3196 to get AutoCAD 2010 w/20% promo. If you did the 40% discount, you'd pay $2847 and get the upgrade to 2011. You pay $349 more for the 20% discount without the subscription and automatic upgrade.

Next year, you'd have to pay $1997 (50% SPP of retail for upgrad to 2011). Let's do that math.
$3196 {20% promo} + $1997 {50% SPP} for a total of $5193. WTF?

Why would anyone want to do that? Wouldn't you rather just do the 40% promo and pay $2847 to get the exact same thing and save $2346? I guess Autodesk is really trying to help the Laggards who refuse to start subscription. It's the "Yeah, we'll show Autodesk. We refuse to ever pay for subscription. We'll never prepay for upgrades. We'd much rather spend thousands more than give them our money." Great business decision there Laggards.

If you had been on AutoCAD subscription for $450/year and started from 2005, you'd have paid $2700 to get to 2011. That's instead of the $3600 you'd pay for standard $600 upgrades or the $2847 for the 40% Legacy promotion. Are you starting to see the light here? No matter how you slice it, subscription is cheaper than upgraded every 5 years. That doesn't even factor in the problems that are created from version conflicts when sharing dwgs with others on different versions. There's a huge labor cost involved in that and I don't understand why people don't require their consultants to move to the newest versions anyhow.

Let's talk about next year's Simplified Pricing Program that starts next March.
An AutoCAD upgrade from 2007 now is $1800 (3 versions @ $600)
Next year it's $1997 (50% of $3995 retail).
That's about a $200 difference. Not such a big deal.

If you have 2008 it's $1200 (2 versions @ $600) vs $1997 (50%) for $800 difference.
If you upgrade every 3 years, it's not such a big deal. If you upgrade every 2 years, it's going to start making more sense to get on subscription now.

I've had some people call me confused about the new SPP starting next March. If you're currently on subscription, you don't have to change a thing. It really only affects anyone with 2007, 2008 or 2009 software not on subscription.

Upgrade now
for 30% Autodesk Retirement discount w/subscription vs next year SPP {$}
  • 2007 - $1800 -30% + $450 sub = $1707 vs {$1997 next year}
  • 2008 - $1200 - 30% +$450 sub = $1290 vs {$1997 next year}
  • 2009 - $ 600 - 30% + $450 sub = $867 vs {$1997 next year}

I know. Way too much information and who wants to read about this stuff, but it's important.
Love them or hate them, Autodesk is making an effort to help AutoCAD users and not so frequent upgraders get up to the latest versions of their products before the Simplified Pricing Program goes into effect next March. I know a lot of people have a reduced pipeline and many are struggling to make ends meet right now, so the timing of all of this may not be so perfect. On the other hand, there are glimmers of the recession ending soon and you have to plan for the next 5 years, not just the next 5 months. Consider financing as an option with a 36 month payment plan. That should help cash flow and solve this little upgrade problem. It's a big problem. If you don't have the funds to upgrade now, how are you going to do it after the Simplified Pricing Program starts?

I know I should have run the numbers for Revit above instead of AutoCAD, but I figured it would give some of you shopping around a chance to call me for the pricing options. For those of you on subscription, the SPP next year should get a lot of older version users to get up to 2010 and start subscription. That should help the industry. Look at what the health care industry is trying to do to save billions of dollars in electronic medical records and paperwork reduction. Same thing applies here. Billions are wasted every year in the construction industry from RFIs, Change Orders, Addendums, etc. Another reason that Revit and BIM are started to be demanded by Owners and Contractors.

With all this, Revit users pay $1.99 per day for subscription. That doesn't sound so terrible does it? If you have AutoCAD you can crossgrade to one of the Revit Suites for a lot less than you think. If you have AutoCAD 2007 and are planning on upgrading, you can add Revit for just $350 more. That's a 93% discount from $5695 Revit new seat price. So, those AutoCAD users reading this, please stop complaining about how Autodesk software is so expensive and they keep taking your money. Once you're doubling your productivity with Revit, you'll be happy to pay subscription and get the newest version of Revit as soon as it's released (unless of course they change the interface to a Ribbon toolbar, but that's a whole other conversation).


Robin Capper June 3, 2009 at 6:47 AM  

I hope tomorrow I will be able to show why I grinned when I saw the images accompanying this post.

Anonymous,  July 29, 2009 at 8:06 PM  

Ok, took me a while to get back but have a look at the Revit portion of this post:


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