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hjsmuc

Thoughts of a customer

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We have seen the recent release of Prepar3D 2.5 and already weeks ago the release of FSX Steam Edition. Yet we do not have fully functional ORBX software for any of these products. I may be picky but I have some observations on this.

 

First, at least Prepar3D 2.5 was out as a beta to many people. I wonder if it was not out to ORBX. Otherwise I ask myself what surprises the RC contained. If there were any, then please explain. 

 

Second, the excitement of some people over being "allowed" to use a piece of software obscures the fact that we all purchased a product. As such this product is supposed to work seamlessly or with little delay if the platform it is dependent on changes.

 

Third, the argument of some to just wait until patches are available is not convincing. Because the updates to the platforms are direly needed. The add-on developers may have a tricky task to follow that development but alas that's their chosen job.

 

Fourth, if the add-on developers believe that they can't keep up with the developments in time for products purchased only once I seriously suggest moving to a subscription model. It was a solution for the big ones like MS, Oracle and Adobe and it would sure work out in the flight sim community. Instead of charging 40 dollars for an airport or more for regions and textures why not charge a monthly subscription fee and in turn work on necessary updates in time.

 

These comments are not exclusive to ORBX nor are they meant to deny that their products are outstanding. However, I dislike the feeling of having to be grateful for a product, after all I am a customer first and a flight sim enthusiast second. 

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The add-on developers may have a tricky task to follow that development but alas that's their chosen job.

 

Many Devs actually have day jobs, familys, stuff to sort out. Flightsim developement in many cases is what they do in their spare time, it is more like their chosen hobby.

 

 

 

Instead of charging 40 dollars for an airport or more for regions and textures why not charge a monthly subscription fee and in turn work on necessary updates in time.

 

You would be happy to wait for updates if you were paying a monthly subcription ?

But not if you have paid full price up front, explain how that works for you.

 

I have just about every payware airport in Europe how would I go about affording monthly subscriptions to all of those, some of which I rarey fly into,

 

I am not having a go at you, but if you buy into a moving platform like P3D or XP10 this is what you have to put up with.  I just boot up FSX whilst I wait on the Devs getting updates out, I can pretty much live without any of them apart from Fsuipc.

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I appreciate every opinion and input. And I admire the patience of many here. 

 

Specifically, I did not address the small mom and pop shop businesses which create add-ons. They often are more responsive and quicker in their updates than the big players. 

Regarding the subscription, I would be willing to pay more in order to get quicker updates and more features if the cost of development is an issue. Always happy to support a good product with good money.

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I am actually grateful to ORBX for porting their sceneries to P3D2 for free. They can take all the time they want as far as I'm concerned. The world will not end. And P3D2.5 JUST came out, and they stated that there were some things they were going to have to change in their scenery libraries (if you bother to read the ORBX forums). All for free no doubt.

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Its a bit of a misnomer to call any FS add-on company "big". The biggest of them (Aerosoft, Orbx, etc) are still individuals working from home in their spare time. There aren't any FS add-on companies with offices or full time staff.

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I am actually grateful to ORBX for porting their sceneries to P3D2 for free. They can take all the time they want as far as I'm concerned. The world will not end. And P3D2.5 JUST came out, and they stated that there were some things they were going to have to change in their scenery libraries (if you bother to read the ORBX forums). All for free no doubt.

 

Agreed, please be patient. I'm no software developer, but I can imagine the task is daunting, particularly for Orbx. They are still trying to play P3D catchup with many of their enhanced airports at this time, let alone 2.5 compatibility. All the while releasing new products.

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There aren't any FS add-on companies with offices or full time staff.

This is wrong. Aeorsoft has offices and full-time stuff. You can visit them at Airport Paderborn.

 

http://www.shop.aerosoft.com/eshop.php?action=news_detail&news_id=26

 

I think, they're more or less the only ones in this respect, though.

 

Otherwise I agree with the objections. ORBX is doing a great job providing us with free Prepar3d2 upgrades which, btw., Aerosoft - despite having offices - didn't care about.

 

Kind regards, Michael

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You also have to take account of FSX:SE which means extra work for some developers to get their add-ons to work. That certainly didn't come out as a beta to Orbx; it wasn't until the day of release that they knew whether their stuff would work or not. And of course it didn't....at least, not fully.

 

Third party developers cannot afford to be left behind when an upgrade comes along as they will clearly lose business. But by the same token they don't want to rush out with some half-baked solution to make their software work as that would be just as bad for customer confidence. These things have to be done properly and that takes time. Patience is a virtue all round.

 

There is quite a clear choice so far as the upgrade from V2.4 to V2.5 is concerned. You either go with the new version, but without some of the extras we are used to, or you stick with V2.4 until the add-ons are sorted. I am quite happy to go with the latter.

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You either go with the new version, but without some of the extras we are used to, or you stick with V2.4 until the add-ons are sorted. I am quite happy to go with the latter.

As am I.

 

Sorry, for the typo in my contribution above - "stuff" vs. "staff". Once upon a time we were allowed to edit such things.

 

Kind regards, Michael

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First, at least Prepar3D 2.5 was out as a beta to many people. I wonder if it was not out to ORBX. Otherwise I ask myself what surprises the RC contained. If there were any, then please explain.

well, one can only speculate what the difficulties were, but i think if it was simple as relinking with the newer vc libraries things would have shown up faster. it might be interesting to hear the details for sure.

 

Second, the excitement of some people over being "allowed" to use a piece of software obscures the fact that we all purchased a product. As such this product is supposed to work seamlessly or with little delay if the platform it is dependent on changes.

well, i would say 6 weeks isn't that much delay, and it's not like the old versions were made incompatible or something. wanting to switch to SE or 2.5 is much different than needing to switch! particularly for a sim that hasn't been updated in years anyway.. if somebody was in a critical position where you absolutely needed 2.5 instead of 2.4 and in a hurry, i question why they would upgrade until knowing that all the pieces they needed were in place, anyway.

 

Third, the argument of some to just wait until patches are available is not convincing. Because the updates to the platforms are direly needed. The add-on developers may have a tricky task to follow that development but alas that's their chosen job.

those upgrades have been taking months (and regular fsx hadn't had one in years) so i don't think 'dire' is really the case here. maybe if you are selling some of htose million dollar p3d sims this is pushing back your timeframe a few weeks?? for who else is it mission critical and if it is, what mission requires a scenery package??

 

Fourth, if the add-on developers believe that they can't keep up with the developments in time for products purchased only once I seriously suggest moving to a subscription model. It was a solution for the big ones like MS, Oracle and Adobe and it would sure work out in the flight sim community. Instead of charging 40 dollars for an airport or more for regions and textures why not charge a monthly subscription fee and in turn work on necessary updates in time.

maybe having a more consistent revenue stream would work, but i'm skeptical that more than a small subset of sim fans would relish the idea of having they account charged every month. personally, i would possibly consider a sub if it included all products or something like that, but i'd be skeptical, i already own these things and have them fully functioning in fsx. also, just throwing more money at a problem doesn't necessarily solve it any faster. one programmer fixing a piece of code may take 2 weeks, but 2 programmers isn't guranteed it will take 1 week. more than 2 or 3 and you're already spending a bunch of extra time on coordinating things.

 

These comments are not exclusive to ORBX nor are they meant to deny that their products are outstanding. However, I dislike the feeling of having to be grateful for a product, after all I am a customer first and a flight sim enthusiast second.

well, again i would suggest that you can pretend that p3d2.5 or fsx-se never existed, and then things will work fine for you. i never saw any case where these devs misrepresented that their products were fully compatible with the recently updated sims, in fact most of them were quite up front about the fact that fixes were needed. i don't know, as far as feeling grateful or not, i guess i'm just not that emotionally invested one way or another with simming, for me it's a way to relax and pretend i'm flying airplanes for fun... if the release of the new stuff had somehow broken the old i would be upset but as it is i just don't get any drama out of it..

 

anyway cheers!

-andy crosby

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