Licensing that hurt everyone

Recently I blogged about using N2PDF to create PDF documents in the background from Notes documents. I mentioned that Softvision does not have a developer license, forcing me to either pay 5,200 ($7,000) for another server license (which my employer will not do), or to download the demo version every 30 days and register with a new email account (which costs me time and aggravation).
It would have been so easy to create a special non-expiring version, but which still display the water mark that prevent you from using it in production. Or why could the water mark not display "N2PDF Developer License" and the company name instead of just "N2PDF Demo Version"? I think my company would even been willing to pay $500 for a developer license like that.

The second example of a bad license is from NotesMedic from Cassetica. It’s a good tool (if somewhat bloated in the latest version), and it is free for home users. If I would use it at work, I need a Enterprise license. There are no single license for corporate customers, I have to pay the full $15,999 (yes, almost 16 thousand dollar!) to be allowed to put it on my work computer. If we would install it for every single user at my work, that’s about $50/user, which is not too bad. But we only need it on a handful computers. Why not have an inexpensive license for corporate single users, without support, that can be purchased using a credit card or PayPal?

In both cases, the customer get hurt (can’t get the functionality needed) as well as the manufacturer (who is missing out on a sale). I just don’t get it.


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