At 01:24 PM 9/16/2002 -0700, Tony Karavidas wrote:
>Like I said before, I think Altium is unique in this area and your
>marketing team should take full advantage of that. It should be in your
>new print ads, all over the website, etc.

Usually engineer/designer types have few good words to say about 
marketing.... Here we have several of us cheering them on!

There are actually a number of unique characteristics of Protel software 
that have been under-marketed.

For example, the database is open, humans can read it and easily write 
utilities and interfaces to it, and Altium has encouraged this. Try doing 
that with Allegro!

The software is resellable, and typical resale price is at least half of 
the current cost. This means that, from an accrual perspective (in reality, 
not necessarily in financial statements and tax returns), much of the cost 
of the software is recoverable if one no longer needs it. Try that with OrCAD!

In some cases, not even uncommon, one can sell the software for more than 
one paid for it originally.

(I had a customer who had paid something well in excess of $10,000 for a 
package from OrCAD that was greatly inferior to the Protel product being 
sold at the same time (this was in Protel 98 days), and, once he realized 
it, it was too late to return it. Protel has generally allowed complete 
refund on return within a reasonable period of time, and so do many other 

Essentially, the resale value of most other CAD software is zero, because 
it cannot be resold (except under narrow circumstances, if then). Protel 
maintains its value.

Because we don't usually think of selling our software, because the 
recoverable value of an old license is very low for most programs, I get 
blank stares many times when I mention this.

As to industry practice with maintenance, does the PADS license still 
provide that failure to pay maintenance allows the company to repossess the 
software, without refund? (As far as I know, they have never done it, but 
why was that in the license in the first place? The provision *could* be 
exercised by a receiver in bankruptcy, who could use the threat of it to 
force payment of some fee from lapsed maintenance accounts, and who would 
have nothing to lose. I bought a PADS license on the cheap when they had a 
ghoulish special offer, hoping to capitalize on frightened PCAD users after 
the acquisition by Protel; when I saw that provision, I returned it and got 
my money back! They were, at least, nice about the refund.)

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