Lighting Analysis Extension for Revit with Daylighting for LEED started out as a free technology preview. It is in the process of graduating from Autodesk Labs to a hosted service based on cloud credits. This has brought up the topic of subscriptions and how they work.
A long time ago, in a galaxy far away, we didn't have a separate maintenance program. Customers did not know how to budget for updates to keep their software current. We started the subscription program to address this. As originally started, customers would pay for a 3 year subscription in 3 equal installments, and they would receive any software updates we released during that time frame. Today we refer to this concept as Maintenance Subscription.
- New versions and updates to perpetual software are supplied as a benefit of Maintenance Subscription.
- The subscription is renewed annually or with multi-year contracts up to 3 years.
Today we have additional forms of subscription, such as:
CLOUD SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION
- These are services and applications that are completely hosted and run in the cloud.
- Many of these require cloud credits. There is an up front allocation to each user with the ability to purchase more as needed.
- Various Cloud Service Subscriptions are purchasable on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.
DESKTOP SUBSCRIPTION (previously known as rental plans)
- Desktop applications have term-based licenses which means users have access to the software for the length of term for which the software has been purchased.
- New versions and updates to desktop applications are supplied during the subscription term.
- The subscription includes cloud credits that can be used for cloud-based services.
- The Desktop Subscription is available as a renewable (or auto-renewing) on a monthly, quarterly, or annual subscription.
I recently watched a presentation from Subscription Product Marketing Manager, Samantha Taylor, who explained that the variety of subscription options available were created to address a variety of customers. Here are a few examples of the types of customers that fit the various subscription options:
Quarterly Desktop Subscription
For established companies (small & large) who experience seasonal workflow, temporary staff hires, ad-hoc projects.
Monthly Desktop Subscription
For freelancers, startups, and very small businesses that only need access to Autodesk software when working on a project. Although more expensive over time, requires a lower up front investment and provides the most flexibility. If a project does not come in as planned, customers can easily cancel their subscription at the end of the monthly term.
Annual Desktop Subscription
For companies, especially start-ups and very small businesses, who have seen their business become more stable and predictable, yet even with funded ongoing work, remain cautious about their expenditures.
Perpetual License plus Maintenance Subscription
Companies with ongoing or steady, predicable workloads will find that a perpetual license with Maintenance Subscription will continue to be their best choice.
Here's a great summary from Samantha's presentation.
It is quite probable that we will repeat the model used on the Lighting Analysis Extension. Technology previews are free, but when they graduate, they are based on cloud-credits.
Information about cloud credits is alive in the lab.