I currently have Macromedia Studio 8 and Photoshop 7 and they are running a little slow in Rosetta so I had a look on the Adobe site to see how much it would cost to upgrade to the nice Universal CS3.
After looking at the different packages I decided the “CS3 Design Premium” package looked like it would suit me the best.
$599 for the upgrade, “so that’s about £300” I thought, “it’s expensive for an upgrade but I can stretch to that”. I switched over to the UK store entered the same information.
“£703.82, that can’t be right, that would put it at $1400 US. That is more than twice the price and you can buy it brand new in the US store for $1700” I thought there must be a mistake on the website so I called the sales line and explained what I had seen on the site.
The sales guy was very apologetic and read out a statement saying it was more expensive to sell software in Europe as they have to translate it into 14 different languages and have different packaging printed.
I told him we have 1 main language in the UK, English (I don’t see them making Welsh or Gaelic versions anytime soon). We get the same English as the US, as the software isn’t localised to British English anyway. He said it is more complicated doing business in the EU market.
I asked could I just order the download option from the US store and not get the packaging shipped, He told me no that would be illegal because they don’t allow US versions of the software to be used outside the US.
This makes no sense to me, a download is a download, they would have the same costs if I were to download it here or someone was to download it in the US, we would both be paying $599 and neither of us would receive packaging. Adobe wouldn’t lose money because I downloaded it in the UK.
I think it is time to start looking at alternatives, I don’t want to give my hard earned wages to profiteers taking advantage of a near monopoly, perhaps a little harsh but nobody wants to part with money when they feel they are being ripped off. (coincidentally Microsoft Expression Studio for Silverlight has an estimated retail price of $599 =p )
I think I will take a more serious look at GIMP, and people are saying nice things about Pixelmator , even though it doesn’t match up to Photoshop in features. The only thing there doesn’t seem to be an alternative for is Flash. Guess I am going to plod along with Flash 8 in Rosetta until my next visit to the US, thinking about it I could probably book the ticket with the difference in price and get a mini holiday at the same time.
I apologise for the long rant Adobe just really pissed me off, I have already gone to Apple’s offerings for video, they just lost me for Photoshop and if they hadn’t bought Macromedia and acquired Flash they would have lost me as a customer altogether. It’s not that I don’t like their software, they just need to learn to treat the people that actually are willing to give them money better. The worse you treat people the less remorse they would have just getting your software on bittorrent.