Author Topic: Lumion users: A heads up about constant changes in licensing policies here  (Read 4006 times)

Ecuadorian

    Reputation: 32
May 07, 2012, 07:34:47 am
In case you don't know what's been going on here...

In case you're not up to date with what's been going on in the Lumion world...

December 2010: Lumion 1 was launched. Even with all its bugs, we early adopters supported the budding software. In early spring, we were told great new features would be coming. However...

June 2011: A new "Lumion Ultimate" license was launched with the features of version 1.2 and all "Lumion" licenses became "Lumion Basic" and would have to pay again to have the new features. Lumion Ultimate buyers were told they would always have everything, initially with 5 modules or "plugins", and were told:
Quote
We finished 5 plugin packs now and the other 4 or 5 will be introduced later. The ultimate edition will always get the plugin packs for free. So with time the Ultimate edition will become much more attractive.

They also said among the extra plugins coming for free to them would include Advanced Animation and a new library of models for Interior scenes. See this thread.
Lumion users suddenly became an angry mob about this slightly unexpected change, but eventually calmed down and coughed up the money... Or just kept a limited version. Reactions of SCF members back in June 2011 can be read here...
http://forums.sketchucation.com/viewtopic.php?f=80&t=37871&start=0
and here:
http://forums.sketchucation.com/viewtopic.php?p=333651#p333651

December 2011: The library of interior models and the new advanced animation feature are released... With "Lumion 2 Ultimate" license. That means paying again. The Lumion 1 Ultimate didn't "become more attractive" and didn't "get the plugin packs for free". They just changed the version number and thus forced "Ultimate" users to upgrade to get the new stuff, including stuff they were told they would be getting for free. (The interior models and advanced animation).

May 2012: The Lumion team said they would soon be releasing new juicy features... But in order to not give this new features for free to Lumion 2 Ultimate users, as they were supposed to, they will eliminate the plugin system for the Ultimate license, eliminate the Basic license, and introduce a new "top" version that will have these features. Owners of the basic license are being offered a huge discount to upgrade to "Ultimate", and owners of "Ultimate" will be offered a discount to upgrade to the new, yet unnamed license. See this thread.

I still believe Lumion is awesome. It has become my main rendering software. I only want a very clear, official statement by Act-3D about what's going on and what's coming. Until now, the Lumion team way of protecting themselves has been "This is not an official statement", "please wait for and official statement form Act-3D"... (official statement never comes).

As i said, I'm their #1 fan... and also their #1 critic.

Most of the time, as you have seen, I try to keep peace here and in all other forums. But today I saw the need to start a little fire.

May 07, 2012, 08:18:03 am
Lumion 2.2 Ultimate has many new nice features and a LOT of content. So don't judge it before you saw it.

Also I am not sure what your goal here is other then to try to scare customers away. We analyze our market together with users all the time and the outcome was we need to approach this differently.

So:

1. Everyone who bought the early version of Lumion 1.0 might not have gotten ALL features we introduced later but between the 1.0 and 2.0 Lumion early adopters got more changes and upgrades for free then MANY MANY other software packages!

2. Yes we renamed to basic also from a marketing standpoint.

3. When we bought a lot of content we wanted some way to earn that investment back. Lumion Ultimate sounded really good.

4. We ALWAYS intended that there will be a 2.0 and we figured 1/3 new price was a good upgrade price. We also intended to release it after 1 year.

5. Yes we do not screen our colleagues posts to much so what we say might be amateuristic since it is not always what we end up with.

6. We think we still help all users the most by creating a solid business model instead of keeping old mistakes. Most new features and content will be added if things are going really good with us.

7. We always try to give our early adopters a great deal. Hence the basic to Ultimate for 150 euro action and the 66% discount on the new top version.

8. Until now this is not an official statement is like 3 day old news. I don't think 3 or 4 days waiting is to much for the official pages to be finished.

I can't say what is coming or what we are intending since I can't see into the future.

Of course users can always be mad at our wrongly made statements we made in this forum. You are correct to wonder where this is going and want to know more about what we will do in the future.

Yes it has been a roller coaster ride and we don't want to keep changing just for fun. But the same speed at which we upgrade Lumion we also want to mature our business model.

You always have the right NOT to go for the new top version and never buy Lumion 3.x.

We think you already have a really good software package already.

Ecuadorian

    Reputation: 32
May 07, 2012, 08:37:50 am
When I quoted the "this is not an official statement"... I was refering to this thread back in June 2011:
http://lumion3d.com/forum/general-discussion/question-about-credit/
No official statement, that I know of, was ever released about the matter.

I have often recommended Lumion, thus bringing you business, despite the bumpy ride, but I can't keep recommending it if I the cost of staying up-to-date is unpredictable and the word of your representatives about it is never to be taken as official. I can't imagine SketchUp or Autodesk representatives giving users hope about future "free" upgrades while at the same time saying "This is not an official statement". They just say nothing until everything is ready. At least with Autodesk it's predictable... you know you only have to pay once a year.

BTW, about my goal...
I fight for the users

May 07, 2012, 08:44:55 am
Well we are not Autodesk and we are only a really small company so we didn't take much time out of our precious time to forum moderate our own posts to much.

If you rather prefer the methods of huge companies nobody is stopping you from only buying Autodesk software.

I don't think you can compare a super small company like ours to Autodesk. Yes they probably never release non official statements but I am sure they have other problems.

If us creating new products/changing our old promises makes you not wanting to suggest other users using Lumion then we are lost already.

We are really glad people suggest other users they know to try Lumion and we are very grateful for that.

What else can we say? "Sorry we are NOT Autodesk we PROMISE to try to be like a major cooperation?"


May 07, 2012, 08:48:40 am
Here is a Ultimate 2.2 preview:

- Many new high quality trees & plants and models.
- Save & load your own custom materials to any folder.
- Import your own textures for use with the Lumion terrain.
- New camera keyframes export in Photo mode.

- Combine terrain materials in your own sets.
- Copy-paste your custom materials from one model to another.
- More Layers in the workspace (Maximum 10 Layers instead of 5).
- Save &∓ load your own custom materials to any folder.
- Import your own textures for use with the Lumion terrain.
- New background rendering mode to prevent the PC from hibernating.

This is a FREE update to Ultimate 2.2

I don't think Autodesk is giving these amount features for FREE in updates.

We don't think we leave our Ultimate users in the cold with all these features. That we created a few more features than this and put them into a new version doesn't suddenly make this a bad release for Ultimate 2.2 users.

May 07, 2012, 10:02:23 am
Of course it is 100% logical to hate it to see a new top version. We would have liked to avoid it but that would mean shelving these features for 3.0 and doing a new version then.

Derekw

    Reputation: 32
May 07, 2012, 11:02:35 am
Hi Ferry,

I'm very excited about release 2.2. You guys do a great job under great stress. I probably missed it, but can you tell me when 2.2 will be available for downloading?

Michael Betke

    Reputation: 35
May 07, 2012, 11:21:37 am
Autodesk introduced the egg-spline in max 2013. So they are superiour to Lumion! ;)
I can't make eggs in Lumion. :(

In my opinion Act-3D discovered that they are king of real-time market and they now want their money because the product was maybe under-priced as it releases if you compare to the only other real-time archviz tool named Twinmotion.

I have basically no problem with maximizing profit since I do it myself like any other businessman too as long as Act-3D gives new and great features for the money and not just a egg-spline which I got this years subscription from Autodesk. But I also can feel with the topic creator here. It looks a bit upside down with all the plugins and ultimate and pro and basic stuff.

Better one or two versions, with yearly subscription.

May 07, 2012, 11:26:14 am
We hope tommorrow the update is ready for download. With a new download manager Arthur created.

Ecuadorian

    Reputation: 32
May 07, 2012, 11:58:01 am
Michael, I love the "yearly subscription" idea.

Ferry, I was actually citing Autodesk as an example of an evil corporation with only one redeeming point... The predictability of the licensing cost.

So, Ferry, if we can't take the word of Remko as official...
There will be more plug-ins and ultimate will still include all off them.

...or even your own word...
We finished 5 plugin packs now and the other 4 or 5 will be introduced later. The ultimate edition will always get the plugin packs for free. So with time the Ultimate edition will become much more attractive.

...at least please tell us who the CTO and the CEO of Act-3D are, so we can fully trust their word.

thierry tutin

    Reputation: 31
May 07, 2012, 12:08:32 pm
Sorry Ferry , I have very badly translated my thinking and saying the opposite of my thought
I mean, I'm very excited to see this new version
 O+ O+ O+

Ming Architect

    Reputation: 3
May 07, 2012, 12:18:09 pm
Ecuadorian,

Don't love Lumion too much, it's hurt both of you and Lumion.
Because the more you love, the easier you can get upset.
This apply to anything, right?

I preferred unpredictable, but make me jaw drop every release like this!
It's better than predictable. with few new boring features add.
You may need more than 2 years upgrade from ADesk, while you got it in one Lumion upgrade.
It just means developers pour their resources in so much and that's mean the dev cost/upkeep may getting higher. One of the best things in ArchVis Animation is Speedtree that you don't need to buy your own license in Lumion.
I count this as a good sign that Lumion is so dynamic in improvements.

Or do you like showcase, its that have been very predictable software for years:
Autodesk Showcase 2012 for Architectural, Construction, and Engineering Users


I doubt you love it.



Ecuadorian

    Reputation: 32
May 07, 2012, 12:23:57 pm
I have no problem paying 30% total price every year for an update that keeps the price of the top version the same... The problem here is that the cost of keeping up with Lumion is snowballing as they create new top versions with higher price tags.  :-\

So, how good are you guys with math?
Lumion 2010 top version 750€
Lumion 2011 top version 1500€
Lumion 2012 top version ????
Lumion 2013 top version ????
Lumion 2014 top version ????
Lumion 2015 top version ????

With each price increase in the top version, not only is the cost of entry going higher, but also the price of upgrading to the next numerical version, as this is one third of the total price.

At the same time, people who pirate software get it for free, and you have to compete with them in the same market.

May 07, 2012, 12:37:40 pm
We are decreasing the yearly upgrade price. And also Lumion 3.0 is not only giving you an EGG spline. We are providing you with a huge upgrade.

I don't know the price of the future TOP versions of Lumion. We talked about a special VR version of Lumion in the past and Quest3D VR is 10.000 euro. So if we would create that you probably will have to pay per projector you use that version on. Lumion VR.

I am not saying this version will happen but I am not going to say it will not.

And I am the CEO and if you hold everything I ever say 100% literary you will never be happy with me. But I doubt other people never change their mind.

May 07, 2012, 06:32:35 pm
Lumion is young and our product-line has changed a couple of times since the initial release. I can imagine that this makes customers insecure or affraid.

If we were Autodesk, Microsoft, Google or whatever big company, our communication may have been more streamlined. But I doubt there is a reason to complain about our updates and give-away policies. The number of updates, new functionality and content (even in the same major version) is astronomical and I dare any 3D software company to compete with this...

Sure, companies such as Autodesk are much more professional in their communication. But they are also much more professional in squeezing every last penny out of their customers.

And I am not sure of they have a public forum where you can speak directly to the developers and management team...