Multi Device Software Licensing
Most PC software these days requires you to have separate licenses for each device you want to install it on, even if you only use one device at a time. Isn’t it about time the software industry was regulated better and forced to allow users to install software on any devices they own, albeit with the intention that they would use one copy at a time.
Bottom line, if I have purchased a software package, I want to use it when and where I choose. If I am at home then on my desktop, but sometimes I may want to use it on my laptop whilst watching TV or if I go out and about – I would still only be using a single copy…
Microsoft’s latest Office product 2013 now only allows one installation, and it was only recently that they relaxed their new rules to allow software to be reinstalled on a new device should the old one die or be replaced. In the past, with previous versions, you could install on a desktop and a laptop as part of the standard license – why has this changed?…
Kindle, iTunes and Google Apps, allows you to purchase an a book, music or app once and then legally install on as many devices as your own as long as you use the same account details. Also Some PC software still comes with multi install licenses, Norton Anti-Virus (with 3 device installs) amongst others that could be mentioned.
For me I have access to a desktop and laptop using Windows 7 but would need two licenses of for example, MS Office 2013 or Photoshop to be able to run these on both my devices, even though I could only use one copy at a time. This is prohibitively costly, Enough is enough, this is utter nonsense and should be regulated for, it has gone on for too long. With Multi Device Software Licensing I for one would be more willing to pay more for the deluxe / fully featured software as opposed to having to purchase multiple copies of a cheaper less functional package.
VOTE HERE – Have your say
Do you think the software industry should be regulated to mandate that software can be installed on all compatible devices (that you personally own) from a single licensed copy, on the understanding that you could only use one copy at any one time?
Technically it would be easy to achieve, possibly software would need reactivating, say a maximum of monthly – this could easily be achieved by using the internet IP address, so if the laptop and desktop were using the same IP address within the month re-activation could be automatic and transparent to the user.
Obviously the industry is moving more and more to Software on demand / Cloud based applications and it is certainly the way forward, catering for one user code to give access anywhere, as and when required, such as Google Apps, MS Office 365 or Sage ONE. But there are some that do not like applications and data being controlled by others (especially large companies, who are even more subject to being targeted by hackers), not being in control when applications change, get updated or cease to be supported / be available or the fact that you have to be on-line to access your information. So whilst the emphasis will be more towards the cloud, for the foreseeable desktop applications as still required.