Subscription Licensing Model?

It’s quite likely that I’m mistaken, it wouldn’t be the first time. Probably not the last, either :wink:

I’ve just read, “Version 3 will also bring changes to the licensing model” in the Christmas Updates note (published 15th Dec 2020) and I wonder if that implies that a subscription model is likely.

If that is the case, (and I appreciate nobody really cares what I think but…) I’d like to say, with respect, FFS, No!

I’ll be very pleased to be wrong (again).


Yeah, totally FFS no.

Or, if they use a subscription-based model, also offer a standalone regular purchase model.

I do not want to continually pay to use a software; I don’t like that psychological burden, regardless of whether that cost works out to be about the same as buying a standalone product. (I’m happy to pay for major upgrades.)


A quick search for the term “subscription” shows up two lively threads addressing this topic, here and here. As such, I feel it’s not particularly useful to open a third thread; that said, it is neither my intention nor would it be my right to limit the discussion itself.

Christian has said that options will be announced when the time comes, and that there are no plans to switch to subscriptions on the Mac at this time.

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I may be mistaken (let’s take that as read) but I think those threads are in the DEVONthink forum, whereas the Christmas Update seems to relate specifically to DEVONthink To Go 3, which is why I created a thread in the DEVONthink To Go forum. Did I make a mistake?

The second thread I linked is in the DTTG forum :slight_smile:

But I’m not really here to point out any mistake; personally I even think DEVONtech do value our opinions as users. That said, that does not mean they will do as any one of us might choose - users’ opinions can only be one factor; food on the table might be another.

The only reason for my post is to suggest those coming here after you perhaps go read what has already be said, and possibly voice any concerns they have in that one central place, rather than upset spreading through the forum :slight_smile:


Alternatively, anyone who, like me, read today’s Christmas Update and came to the DEVONthink To Go forum to see if a thread had been started in relation to the stated “changes to the licensing model” might find this thread and contribute. All roads lead to Rome, as my grandmother used to say.

Talking of my grandmother, who was widely regarded as a very wise woman. She never paid a subscription for software licensing in her life. And that’s an example I aspire to, which permits me to return to the point of my original post.


I will solemnly shut up - I wouldn’t dare contradict your grandmother :older_woman: thanks for your cordial posts :slight_smile:


Any indication of release date yet? I’m willing to subscribe if it keeps DTTG sustainable, although I prefer to keep subs to a bare minimum. Some of the comments about the current version of DTTG in the forum are a bit severe but I welcome an update. (I think) I can see where it’s going for the Desktop version too. I hope devontech find a balance that works for customers and themselves.

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Quoting DEVONtechnologies | Christmas Updates which says:

While we have an internal release date for DEVONthink To Go 3 we don’t publish it yet as there might be unforeseen delays caused, e.g., by factors out of our control.

We are not releasing it before the Christmas holidays, though, as we want to be available for customer support when we put it into your hands.


Thanks @TJLuoma

Looking forward to it. (I thought I read that update!)

I am getting tired of this topic. It’s not something I want to worry about right now. Nevertheless, I have some thoughts to inflict upon you.

There are two—no three—licensing models that I see:

  1. One-time payment with free updates (until a really significant advance warrants you buying a new “version”)—Admittedly, Apple does not make update pricing easy…but you should take that up with them
  2. The subscription model: you continue to pay and receive ALL updates for as long as you want to
  3. Something absurd and hated by all

The first is like a pyramid scheme, if the developer can continue to attract new users at a rate that funds continued development of the app, then they’re golden. But if not then there’s no further development. You can try for the “this next release is SO much better that you’ll want to buy it again!” approach. But again, Apple doesn’t make that easy for developers, it’s a crap shoot.

The second subscription model demands continual development and improvement to meet the expectations of the subscribers. And that may not always even be possible, leading to attrition and eventual decay.

So actually, ALL roads lead to decay. The question is which will bring the most customer value==developer revenue.

∴ Let’s relax, sit back, and see what happens while we enjoy having DEVONthink


Thanks for pointing this out. I managed to miss these small prints in the blog post. I would bet realistically nothing is changing after all the feedbacks in the previous thread.

Though critical of slow fixes on DTTG compared to DEVONthink, I’ll settle for today’s 2.7.8 update. At least it fixes some of those nagging bugs :ok_hand:

Well… you’d like to think so, but if you look at, for example, TextExpander, they have done almost nothing with the app since it went subscription something like 4 years ago.

I wonder how many people there keep paying because they have the sunk cost of everything being in TextExpander already.

On the other hand, PDFpen has a new, paid update every year and has a bunch of features to justify a new update every year, or you can keep using the version that you have for a few years.

And TextExpander isn’t in the Mac App Store so that excuse doesn’t apply, although it clearly does for DTTG.

From all I’ve heard from people using the DTTG beta, they keep hinting that it’s a substantial release with improvements worth waiting for. So I look forward to seeing what the foundation is and what the annual price is.

I’m just leaving my comment here to make a statement: I do not like subscription models, especially for apps I invested quite a lot already. Please DON’T go down the that road, Devontechnologies. I use DEVONthink because with DTTG I have my documents with me in my pocket. With a DTTG subscription app, that would mean good bye to DEVONthink as well. Just my two cents.


Just my .02, and maybe others have already mentioned, but it seems 2.7.8 might be kept around for those of us with older devices that run iOS 11 and 12 while those with newer devices and a more current iOS can subscribe to version 3.

Like reading the comments lol

I wish ppl come up with a system that satisfies the majority.
We all use DT for different reasons.
We all have different budge to spend.

The dev of better touch tool, I like his approach of pracing, So is DT too, the way it is right now personally i think it is fair.

If either of them were American companies, man we would have been in a sub based payment long ago. Why do I find Americans companies to be so greedy.


Excellent apps, guess what do they have in common? Besides being awesome apps

@Blanc has an excellent point about keeping the discussion focussed. It’s been common since the dawn of the Internet to do a cursory search on a forum about the subject one wants to post about before adding a new thread. :slight_smile: Otherwise, resentment flares up again, just like it’s doing now in this thread, about matters that have already been talked about to death, about which there is no further information yet, and about which we already have a current official statement.


Technically speaking, DEVONtechnologies IS an American company!

I’ll add my two cents here as well. I certainly don’t use DTTG enough to justify a subscription so I do not expect to upgrade if that is what the decision ends up being. However, I agree with the sentiments expressed here that I would be willing to make a one time purchase.

If it does go to a subscription model I will seriously have to consider moving on from DT entirely though.

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