2020 has switched to a Software as a Service (SAAS) model and despite the seemingly higher price tag, its benefits are many.
For years, 2020 has sold licenses to their Design software with a physical “key” that plugs into the computer. The earliest versions plugged into the parallel, or printer port, with the more recent variants plugging into the smaller and more convenient USB port. The issue with the physical key (or the technical term “dongle”) is that it can be broken, or even worse, lost.
New Model vs. Old
Several months ago, 2020 started offering Design as a yearly subscription. While they are phasing out the USB keys for brand-new users, current license owners can keep using them indefinitely, as long as they maintain their support contract on each one. This means that their investment is safe for the foreseeable future.
For new users, however, this can be a financial relief. Rather than laying out several thousand dollars initially per user, plus the annual support fee, you pay one subscription amount per year, which covers the use and support. The major benefit to this is that each designer can use their license in multiple locations, for example on a desktop PC at the office and a laptop on the road, without having to worry about losing or damaging a USB key.
Another benefit is that showroom owners don’t have to pay for more licenses than they need. They can scale the number of licenses as needed, and they are always on support and eligible for upgrades.
I reached out to Francesca Airoldi, a marketing specialist at 2020spaces.com. Here are the benefits to the new subscription service in their eyes:
- Software updates are available for download
- Full support for all users
- USB keys can be lost or stolen – softkeys are always secure
- Users can use the software on any computer on which it’s installed
- Low cost of entry for new customers and entrepreneurs looking to start a business
- All manufacturer catalogs will be available via the cloud and will always be up-to-date
- User preferences will be on the cloud so users can set up their favorite configurations and setting to get the same user experience from any computer
- New cloud-based applications that integrate with 2020 Design to help our customers run their business and win more deals
If you have the original licenses, fear not, you will be able to use them indefinitely as long as you are current on your support. New business owners now have a lower barrier of entry because of not having to lay out thousands of dollars initially. 2020 even allows the use of PayPal Credit, which allows the buyer to spread the payments across 6 months, further freeing up cashflow.