Why I hate desktop software

25Aug08

I installed some backup software over the weekend, and it reminded me of the reasons why traditional computer software sucks:

– Updates are a pain in the ass and the automatic ones never work right.

– The user interfaces are typically very crude and confusing when compared to web-based software.

– The pricing models don’t match the value delivered. I would much rather pay $30/month for a product that I use all the time and get support and upgrades with that, rather than paying $400 upfront and $200 every few years for the upgrades. Why? Because the web pricing model is less work for me (no upgrades to keep track of or waste my time purchasing and installing), and I pay more directly for the ongoing value the software provides me.

What does this mean for desktop software makers? Web-based software has raised the bar in many areas, and I believe traditional software needs to improve quite a bit in order to stay competitive.



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