I purchased Camtasia beginning of 2018 (january/february), why do I have to pay for Camtasia 2018 upgrade?

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nawel.taleb

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  • frustrated

Posted 5 months ago

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Rick Stone

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Hi there

Unless you also purchased some sort of additional maintenance plan that guarantees you get major upgrades, you have a pretty narrow window to qualify for free. Something like 30 days or so. But the good news is that you do get a reduced rate on what the upgrade costs.

Cheers... Rick :)
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Graham Moore

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there just getting greedy solving issues that should solved in 9 oh and added few gimmicks.   They treat the existing customers as money pits
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Daniel C Clark

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I have owned Camtasia from the very beginning and loved it.  I purchased the original Mac 1 version.  However as I was preparing to upgrade to 2018 the $49 price for one year of maintenance is a bit disappointing.  Maybe an annual fee would have more palatable. The maintenance  language gives me the  feeling like its not the company I loved may be moving away from  "we love our customers" company to something that feel odd. I mean I did not come here because I was "READY TO BUY THE ADDITIONAL MAINTENANCE" fee. I came here to see if others had the same knee jerk reaction I had. It was like WHOW what?  It just felt funny and didn't sit well with my gut.   Maybe you could re consider to do an annual feel instead of the upgrade. With the current pricing, and as a nominal user,  I am out and not going to purchase the 2018 upgrade. . Offer me a $99 upgrade and an annual feel of $49.95 and that might have been a better deal and more appeal to me.  That would have been with improved customer service and more free tech service to I might add.  With the neg feed back you are getting here is seems the marking team didn't predict the reaction of the average user.  If in 2019 you require a new "$99" upgrade whats the difference?  And what happens in 2020 or 2021.  $99 to upgrade.  I'll be watching the company and see if things change.  Keep making good products, I like them. I hope you rethink the pricing structures. 
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kellysstudio

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When I originally purchased 5 years ago, there was a customer service and at one point they really helped me fix an issue as I was out of the country, but now, no customer service, just emails and it doesnt help at all when someone cant walk me through it! 
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Luke Griffioen, Employee

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Hi,

We do still offer phone support, just note the hours listed at the bottom of this page https://support.techsmith.com/hc/en-us
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Mal Reynolds

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You do... but only on the current version with standard support, OR for 3 years on legacy versions with a maintenance licence.

https://support.techsmith.com/hc/en-us/articles/203732728-Supported-Versions-of-TechSmith-Desktop-Pr...

The thrust of this thread seems to have been that the release of 2018 effectively negated the phone / chat support for C9 (and it'll be the same with the Snagit family) unless the user either buys a maintenance contract or upgrades. If you move to yearly upgrades you can expect this to become more of a gripe, especially with a release like C2018 which many (myself included, admittedly) do not feel was a genuinely "major" update.

Note that this is a prediction, not a personal complaint since I've never needed phone or chat support and given the timezone gap, I prefer e-mail support anyway. But it used to be that people would have a couple of years of "full deck" support before a new version arrived. If you go to annual releases you'll have an increasing number of people who have only a few months before support reduced to e-mail only. That's likely to put some noses out of joint, as you can see from some of the posts here.

it may well be an unintended side effect of a move to annual releases but it's probably something that you should kick around in a staff meeting and decide whether you want to do anything about it and, if so, what.



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bnystrom

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I tend to agree. We've had version 9 for exactly 4 months prior to yesterday's release and we're not about to pay for an upgrade to 2018 so soon. 
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Rick Stone

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The good news here is that nobody is actually forcing anyone to upgrade. It's completely optional and only if you want the features the upgrade offers!
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Marko

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Hi Rick,

I understand that no one is forced to upgrade, however there was not a lot of improvements or features in this new version.
Apparently It's still the same version with some corrected features that should be completed in Camtasia 9 as requested by the users in the forums.
The software is still the same  and Techsmith just changed the name to 2018.

I don't really see why paying so much?

I strongly suggest Techsmith to consider offering a LOWER FEE(like half or 1/3 the normal) for these kind of minor upgrades ( or  just updates)  so the existed customers . It will be a  benefit for both the company and the loyal customers .

Marko
(Edited)
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Graham Moore

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i agree Marko, its the same GUI just added a diff. name with tweaks
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mochsenbein

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Techsmith was completely DISHONEST of not informing at time of purchase of Camtasia that a major(?) upgrade would be released shortly in less than 6 months.
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temenoujka.fuller

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 I have three copies of Camtasia - one for Mac and 2 for PC. I am using only one, but I was hoping that I have the right to install the other two soon. No, Camtesia is not allowing me to use my existing licences.  I changed my computer, and I would like to install my old copy. This is impossible. The company is playing games to make me hate the product - not that anybody cares. This is not the Camtasia for which I paid almost $1,000.  
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bnystrom

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You can download your old version of Camtasia and your existing license keys should work with it.  https://www.techsmith.com/download/oldversions
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Joe Morgan

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Within six months of purchasing Camtasia you can purchase the maintenance agreement for $49.75.

This would be a backdated purchase. However, this would allow you to update to version 2018 for that price.

Which is not free. But it’s cheaper than a standard upgrade. I know that’s not what you want to hear, but that’s the best I can come up with.

Regards Joe

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mochsenbein

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Joe, what you are really saying is Techsmith allows you to purchase some lubricant from them to decrease the pain of their dishonest entry.
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hello

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I'm in the same boat. I was also told I could purchase maintenance at any point. I never needed support as I'm fairly technical myself but I recently switched to Windows 10 and am having issues with it lagging. I tried all settings I could on my end but the issue persists. Support won't speak to me. I've spent nearly $200 on software that's fairly new that I can't use (not working well on my new system). If I ever felt compelled to spend money on software, it would be because I had a delightful experience with it. I buy and update software all the time, but only when I'm impressed and believe in the company. This is a very simple way to get me to share my concerns with Techsmith and their greed to my audience and clients, and a way to ensure that I will not re-invest in Camtasia ever again. Appalling. 
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Mal Reynolds

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@Hello; they may not literally "talk" to you (phone support is only available for the current version), but that doesn't mean that they won't provide you with any support at all. For version 9 you can e-mail the details to support, and will be able to until 2020:
https://support.techsmith.com/hc/en-us/articles/203732728-Supported-Versions-of-TechSmith-Desktop-Pr...

I recommend doing so; in my experience Techsmith Support are very good (certainly compared to, say, Microsoft) and will do what they can for you.

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kellysstudio

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I can call a “Microsoft” tech, or my computer tech. But when it comes to hang ups with my program, I need help to explain and walk me through THEIR program, because I have many video and recording programs. It’s not making it easy for me.
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bnystrom

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FWIW, I've found the email support to be very helpful in the few cases where I needed it, which have been for functional  problems with the software (something not working, apparent bugs, etc.). Admittedly, I'm a tech geek, so I don't generally need a huge amount of detail or a phone conversation to figure things out. I understand that others' needs are different.

For procedural questions, this forum has been my go-to resource, as answers are typically quick and often provide multiple solutions for a given question. It's better than going to Tech Support because the people here use the product for a living and are constantly coming up with innovative ideas.

It's your choice which resource to use, but I suggest only going to Tech Support when something is obviously broken or when people here suggest that it's where you need to turn for answers. We've often seen the functional problems that others experience and can provide answers to many of those questions, too.
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wendy.hamilton, TechSmith CEO

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I'd like to get a little more customer input on this issue of what 'futures' a customer should expect when they purchase a perpetual product without maintenance?   And what support/update models are currently considered by our customer base as industry standard?  Sorry for the length - this is just for the true cerebral types on this thread.

First with regard to support.  The major versions that support is ending for this year were originally released in 2015, and that support ends only if you didn't purchase optional maintenance.  We provide free phone support for the current version.  And the caliber of our support people are incredible.  Now if you've had a bad support experience with a supported product version then please do escalate because that is not ok.   But my view is that TSC offers better support than typical.   Two year (free) support and 0 phone support is more typical from what I'm aware.   If you think I'm wrong, please tell me the vendors you are referring to and their policies, I'm happy to reassess because we do want to be best in the area of support.  Our resource decision, as always, is whether we put our resources on the new which is where it's often hardest for our customers to onboard, or on supporting the past where isn't always pragmatic to patch (especially if the operating system or third party technology is now also typically unsupported).  How would you improve support if you were us?  

It's always been true, for decades, that we didn't publish the planned date of the major, and when we released the major,  it ended free updates for previously purchasers (unless on maintenance, with exception of something like a critical security patch).   That's a pretty typical perpetual model.  We've released majors as quickly as 9 mos apart, 12 mos with this last Snagit major, and have occasionally gone long periods with Camtasia majors.  Note that we observe annual majors as the growing industry standard, agreed? Perhaps part of the problem is that we've simply not communicated our release cycle and future plans and should? 

But whether our release cycle is 9 mos apart or 3 years apart, there is always the event that a customer who bought a few months before the new major feels cheated.  Even if there is an "expensive" feature in the major, there are always some customers won't value that feature and be annoyed they didn't receive the other updates.  Maintenance is intended to serve as software assurance - insurance to reduce that risk - but either customers don't know that when they purchase, or don't value that security for the price.   Maybe if we guaranteed the next major always if you bought maintenance (even if that major it was longer than a year away), then it would be more attractive?

Although we've done it this way - for decades - this kind of perpetual/major release model feels a little dated to me personally and we had begun to wonder if it was time to change.  So last year we did a customer survey which was focused on this issue.  One model we were specifically curious about was Altassian's model.   When you buy the product, the first year of maintenance is bundled in with the purchase price.  So you are guaranteed one year of updates no matter when in the development cycle you buy.  But there are zero updates after that, if you don't renew maintenance, including zero bug fixes. There is also the pure SaaS rental Adobe type model which I'm sure you all know.   The good news there is that if you use for a year, you only pay for a year and you never have to worry about being on old software that has become unsupportable.   Are these the models you'd prefer?

What we found from the survey is that about 30% of customers wanted an annual SaaS model, which was higher than we would have assumed but not yet high enough to action.   What was the bigger finding is that most customers didn't want to upgrade annually anyway - that was too frequent of a change event for them - they wouldn't typically upgrade more than every two years even if it was free.     Most of the non SaaS contingent, and conservative upgrade contingent, expressed that  they wanted the control to wait to see the major to decide to upgrade or not, not just based on the financial  value to them but also based on the change impact/risk to them and their organization.    Another way to say this is that they were happy with the release they trialed and bought and weren't anxious for new release at all.  Because of this general customer view, we didn't change the model at the time.  But it still has been on our mind as something to watch customer sentiment on - hence my interest in this thread.  Does this customer feedback surprise you?

Any comments on the above? 
Thanks for your time.


(Edited)
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bnystrom

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Wendy,

I'm pleasantly surprised that you're getting hands-on with your user base and would like to commend you for it. I agree with what Daniel has said, particularly regarding the timing of major releases. Product development should be based on technology changes and the needs of your users, not some arbitrary schedule.

I would also add that there appears to be a significant disconnect between what your customer base is clamoring for and what CS2018 delivered. It seems that fixing many long-term, thorn-in-the-side bugs was ignored in favor of adding a few features. Frequently requested features were likewise neglected. There were also arbitrary changes made to functionality that make no sense and aggravate many users. It feels like these changes were driven by engineers, rather than product designers or user requests. On top of that, CS2018 was a buggy mess, with many problems that were simply inexcusable and which made it feel like you were beta-testing on your user base. This is what happens when you release on an arbitrary schedule, rather than when a product is  actually ready. Now you have a product with a tainted reputation that must be overcome. Can you say "Windows 8"?

When it comes to maintenance agreements, I think that a big part of the issue is the placement of your product. In my experience, maintenance agreements are typically purchased by businesses (and they expect to do so), but you have a product that straddles the business / hobbyist / consumer space. I worked in the software industry for quite a while (Tech Support, Q/A, Implementation Engineering and Sales), both for companies that produced consumer products and others that offered only corporate solutions, and the mindsets are completely different, as I'm sure you know.

Even though many of your customers are technically businesses, I suspect that a large percentage are very small or one-person operations (at least that appears to be the case based on the people here on the forum). I also suspect that they often have the consumer mindset of "I bought the software, why should I have to pay extra for tech support?" In my own case, my employer purchased the software, but the company is relatively small and intimate, and I feel a need to protect the company's interest and not waste money on services or "upgrades" that don't provide substantial value.

That last word is the key; there has to be both real and perceived  value to product upgrades and service contracts. The (apparently) broad perception is that neither the recent 2018 release nor the service contract offer much in the way of value.

Personally, I abhor the SaaS/subscription model and will not purchase any software that forces me into that, rather than making a one-time purchase where I feel that I actually own the product. SaaS/subscription seems like a cash-cow for companies more than a benefit to their customers.  Perhaps I'm just old-fashioned and cranky about it, but I'm not alone.

Lastly, as I have often done here, I would like to commend your support staff for the excellent job they do. You've definitely got some great people!
(Edited)
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Rick Stone

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WRT bnystrom's statement:

...CS2018 was a buggy mess, with many problems that were simply inexcusable and which made it feel like you were beta-testing on your user base...

Only TechSmith can answer that question, but I honestly don't believe that TechSmith was taking that approach. (or perhaps I'd be better off saying that I really don't want to believe that) If they are or have decided to, I really hope they would change that thinking.

I use several software products. Some of them are created by Adobe systems. It wasn't always an Adobe product, but in 2007 Adobe acquired a product I've used for more than 20 years. And this year Adobe decided to re-create it from the ground up (they call it re-imagining) but the point being, it was released on an arbitrary time scale that was driven by a deadline.

Quite literally, it is feature incomplete and cannot be used reliably for creating any genuine and functional work product until several "updates" occur and will finally make it work for the masses. So in a sense, they literally are using the paying customers as involuntary beta testers as the product develops.

And we are talking software that sells for more than $1,000! So I really Really REALLY hope this isn't any kind of trend we are seeing in the software industry.

Cheers... Rick :)
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bnystrom

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I don't believe that TechSmith was intentionally using us as unwitting beta-testers either, which is why I said it "made it feel" that way. This is what can happen when mistakes are made in the design, engineering and testing of a product; it damages the perception of the product and the company.

In fairness, there does have to be a development schedule for every project. However, it should be based on the time required to make the planned changes and additions, not the calendar. The plan comes first, not the schedule.

I've also been the victim of companies purchasing products I really liked and trashing them. It sucks, plain and simple.
(Edited)
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Rick Stone

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Ouch! Yes! I HATE when companies do this. For example, and again, Adobe purchased Serious Magic because they wanted their Chroma Key technology. And they just abandoned the Visual Communicator product. I loved that product! There was nothing quite like it. But it's dead now. :(
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Daniel Hochstein

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Thanks for reaching out to us, your loyal customer base. As a user of Camtasia since version 2, here's my two cents. A major release should have nothing to do with the calendar - it should be a major change to the software. Adding a couple of bells and whistles, and some subscription conent services, do not, in my opinion, turn Camtasia 2018 into a major version upgrade. Neither does the passing of a certian amount of time. If there's a major revamp of the features or funtionality (i.e.: version 8-9), then when it's ready, by all means roll it out. Your statement "Note that we observe annual majors as the growing industry standard, agreed?" - no, NOT agreed. This may look good on Techsmith's books or appeal to investors, but what does it have to do with the users, and provided funtionality? I found very little new in the "2018"version of Camtasia to call it a major upgrade, and many of my fellow users have expressed the same view. In fact the trial version perfomed poorly on my system. I was never made aware of the avaiability of a maintenance contract in all the years I"ve been using the product. When I learned about it after the new version came out, I inquired about purchasing it for the version I own (9), since I found little value in the upgrade. Crickets. The sales rep was only intersted in supporting me if I pruchased the upgrade. This is not how you keep your customer base happy, from my persective. As far as the idea of SaaS, that's a non-starter from my perspective as well. Ask Adobe how that's working out for them. If you expect your customers to buy a new version every year in order to get support, like a new model car, well, just say so. But it darn well better have better looks and performance than last year's model - enough to justify the spend. Otherwise I will keep using the tools that help me produce my work. If it's not Camtasia, then it will be soem other tool.