A rant why I don't rent software and never will
Let me first start with a few clarification:
I have nothing against commercial software, in fact, I'm a software developer that creates proprietary software for clients.
I believe that every company can buy and sell whatever they want.
In fact, a lot of companies make more money if the rent their software, so the business side seems to work for them.
This is what I think on the customer/consumer side of things.
My side of the story
My issue with the renting of software is simple, lack of control. Just an example:
I have some old hardware designs made with Eagle. I own a license for the specific version. I still have a backup of the installer and the files.
After ~10 years I want to export them again, I can fire up a VM, install the software and good to go.
With more modern software this becomes a problem if the installer or application does an online check if the license is valid and the license server is no longer running (Adobe Photoshop). Now I can't run the software I bought anymore. This is a problem for a 4 digit fee that I paid a long time ago.
With the latest incarnation I have to rent the software for a monthly fee, sometimes you have to pay a full year, even if I want to use for 5 mins! (start, take 2 hours to update, load, export, close) like Fusion360?
I have no problem with buying a version with a perpetual, non expiring license that will get update for a year or two, even if the price is higher than renting 2 years, if and only if I could use in 5 years without some cloud stuff and license server that can be shut off.
Also independent of the cost side, there is the feature or innovation side. If you buy version 7 of the software, you need a reason for buying version 8, like a feature that you really need or want. Without such a reason, no need to upgrade.
Yeas, the UI got revamped again, addition of ribbons or getting rid of it again, new icons whatever, I don't care.
With a rent model, there is less need for the developer to improve, people rent it anyway or event worse, they add a feature that I don't want, like tracking or manufacturer cloud-storage first, local storage optional something without opt-opt.
What can I do, stop the subscription and have no software at all to use and have to switch products or just "take the pill" and hope everything will be right soon, after many people complained?
What to do?
If you have a license for a product that becomes rent to use, complain, tell them what you think and that you will switch or never update again. Show them the money they miss out.
Go to another vendor for a similar product and tell them, you bought their product, because of the license so they know that was one of the reasons so that they can tell their bean counters.
Or switch to an open source project and from the saved license costs, donor parts or maybe the full amount to support the project.
Bonus points if you can encourage them to open an Content Nation account and send them the donations that way.