Why the 48% increase in the cost of Premium Support for 2023?


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Jaybee
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Dear Macrium,

Love your product, can't fault your support either. Happy Workstation customer for many years. Had an email this morning reminding me that my Premium Support renewal was due at the end of May so I thought I'd get it out of the way, generated a renewal and got a shock. The price for Premium Support 2023-2024 had increased by a whopping 48% from the price I renewed at in 2022.

I was shocked to see the price for Premium Support listed as £20.50 + VAT. I've renewed each year for the last few years, for 12 months each time:

In 2020 the renewal cost was £12.80 + VAT
In 2021 the renewal cost was £13.80 + VAT
In 2022 the renewal cost was £13.80 + VAT

I fully appreciate we are currently in the UK in a period of circa 10% inflation, but escalating the fee by 48% feels to me to be unjustifiably excessive. 

Would be interested to hear your comments as to why this increase has taken place? It's not the additional £7 that's the deal-breaker obviously, but the principle of such a huge increase in percentage terms. There are way too many companies now taking advantage of this inflationary period to over inflate prices and it's sad to see Macrium joining in.
Froggie
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Jaybee - 21 April 2023 1:09 PM
There are way too many companies now taking advantage of this inflationary period to over inflate prices and it's sad to see Macrium joining in.

Are you saying the Macrium SUPPORT value you get is not worth the price increase, or just that Macrium is gouging their user base?  Possibly the previous SUPPORT was undervalued...

Edited 21 April 2023 1:36 PM by Froggie
Jaybee
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The cost of something I have no option other than to buy from this company (i.e. I can't shop around) has suddenly increased by almost 50% overnight. I'm simply asking why?

The support is great, I have no issues with that.

Macrium have been able to offer support, on the rare occasions it's been needed, for the previous prices I posted with slight upticks for inflation year after year going forward. So why such a sudden steep increase in 2023? Of course I can afford it, that's not the issue, it's the principle of massive above inflation price hikes. I'm not being given extra services for this, it's just a bog standard renewal. 

What's to stop them doing the same thing next year and the year after that?
jphughan
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I wouldn't say you have no option other than to buy support. You aren't required to keep your support current to continue using Reflect. And you aren't required to keep using Reflect as your backup solution. I would argue that those are what would stop Macrium from significant price increases every year onward.

Can't answer the "why" part, of course.

Edited 21 April 2023 5:08 PM by jphughan
Jaybee
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jphughan - 21 April 2023 5:07 PM
I wouldn't say you have no option other than to buy support. You aren't required to keep your support current to continue using Reflect. And you aren't required to keep using Reflect as your backup solution. I would argue that those are what would stop Macrium from significant price increases every year onward.

Can't answer the "why" part, of course.

This is true. However, I bought into the Macrium system for my Workstation's backup needs and one factor in deciding to go with Macrium that was that there was a support package at a reasonable cost I could purchase that meant I could pick up a phone if something went bad and get some instant help. I've only needed to do that once in just over four years and that was after a bad Reflect update caused my old Win 7 system (as it was then) to BSOD and not boot. I picked up the phone and we resolved a way round it and I learned my lesson then not to take the latest updates immediately Smile So yes, perhaps I don't actually need premium after all.  

That said, the machine Macrium protects is my production workstation so I quite like the security and I like the product and yes, I'll undoubtedly renew because I'm now on Win 11 and that's still subject to updates that might break things so it makes sense. But it still leaves a sour taste that Macrium have arbitrarily hiked the fee by 48%. I run a business and I've had to absorb increased costs of doing business whilst keeping my prices competitive. Sadly I don't have a locked-in base of users of a product that I can inflict such a rise on myself.
jphughan
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There are still some assumptions built into that post. The increase probably wasn’t arbitrary. I rather doubt it came from throwing darts at a board. As for you having had to raise prices while remaining competitive, are you implying that Macrium’s prices are no longer competitive? To Froggie’s point, perhaps they were underpriced before. And for lock-in, here I would say Macrium is more generous than most in that an expired paid version remains usable for performing restores, so if you wanted to switch solutions, you would still retain the ability to restore from your existing Reflect backups into the future.

I completely understand the sour taste aspect of the percentage increase, but I think other aspects are either inaccurate or at least lack supporting evidence.
Edited 22 April 2023 1:48 PM by jphughan
Froggie
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...and remember (I have few facts to back this up), the cost of the product itself has not gone up for quite a few years, even during this inflation phase we're currently in.  They may be trying to keep their product competitive in this inflationary cycle, and to do so, they need to increase revenue elsewhere to cover their inflationary cost increases.

Just thinking out loud here... Smile

Jaybee
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jphughan - 22 April 2023 1:19 PM
There are still some assumptions built into that post. The increase probably wasn’t arbitrary. I rather doubt it came from throwing darts at a board. As for you having had to raise prices while remaining competitive, are you implying that Macrium’s prices are no longer competitive? To Froggie’s point, perhaps they were underpriced before. And for lock-in, here I would say Macrium is more generous than most in that an expired paid version remains usable for performing restores, so if you wanted to switch solutions, you would still retain the ability to restore from your existing Reflect backups into the future.

I completely understand the sour taste aspect of the percentage increase, but I think other aspects are either inaccurate or at least lack supporting evidence.

I didn't mention that I had to raise my prices.  I commented that I had to absorb higher costs of doing business whilst NOT being able to launch 48% price hikes on my own customer base. "I've had to absorb increased costs of doing business whilst keeping my prices competitive"

You misunderstand the 'lock in' aspect. I am locked in to buying premium support from Macrium. 


Jaybee
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Froggie - 22 April 2023 1:43 PM
...and remember (I have few facts to back this up), the cost of the product itself has not gone up for quite a few years, even during this inflation phase we're currently in.  They may be trying to keep their product competitive in this inflationary cycle, and to do so, they need to increase revenue elsewhere to cover their inflationary cost increases.

Just thinking out loud here... Smile

Could be a number of reasons. I'd love to know why with perhaps some reassurances we're not going to see similar happen next year. 

What I got through the mail was an email from a very lovely Macrium rep (don't blame her at all) who basically said "Hi, it's time for your support renewal payment, here's a link to generate a renewal invoice". Absolutely no mention of substantial rises whatsoever. THIS was the point where if I was running a company about to foist a 48% uplift in charges I'd be trying to smooth it over a bit with some explanatory background but no, not a peep, not one clue about what was to come. Perhaps most just cough up and don't question stuff like this. 

What does that make me, the customer think? Do I feel valued?  Do I now think "hmmm, I wonder what else might be out there that would satisfy my requirements". I'd not given that question a thought for the last 4-5 years but now, perhaps I'll take a good look. 


Danskeman
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I have no evidence to support this assertion but given Macrium Reflect Free has been retired and support costs have gone up, I cannot help thinking Paramount are under significant pressure to increase profitability. 

I have a "horrible" feeling, that Macrium Reflect is going to follow the modern trend to leasing software. 

Even one of my favorite tools "Bluebeam Revu PDF" has recently now got rid of its perpetual licence model, and gone to a lease model.  I regret not buying a copy last year now as the lease model is much dearer.

Another trend is to have major (paid for) update perpetual versions updated more frequently.

As I am nearing retirement, I fear the day is coming where Macrium Reflect Home is an expensive luxury.  I will probably stay on V8 for most of my licences and only update 1 to V9.

If they do adopt a lease model, then, regrettably, I will remain on V8 past EOL until as such day something happens in Windows to break 8

The only major lease model I use that is essential to me is Office 365.  
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