I won’t be taking advantage of the offer I was emailed today, announcing the opportunity to spend $100 to upgrade from 2.0 to 2.5 of Dragon Dictate.
I like that software, I truly do. In five or ten years it will be awesome, and everyone will use it, or something like it.
But today, using it can still be intrusive and clunky. (See my list of complaints here.)
But the real problem is that the company is simply insane with their pricing. For doctors and legal people, they have specialized products with even crazier pricing. But for ordinary people like me, I’m sorry, I quit. It just costs too much.
Take this release. (Please!) It’s a hundred bucks to upgrade. With the exception of the Microsoft Office Suite, I can’t think of a single product I use that costs over $100, brand new. The idea of an upgrade costing $100 is insane.
But maybe if it’s a really impressive upgrade? Like, from 2.0 to 3.0? No. A hundred bucks is still too much. And, frankly, I never saw that much improvement using Dragon 2.0 over MacSpeech 1.5, so I’m not even sure about major version upgrades. Maybe things improved for them, but for me, none of the changes I did see were improvements.
Besides, this isn’t 2.0 to 3.0. They call it 2.0 to 2.5, but there never was a 2.1, so calling it 2.5 is a feeble attempt to make it seem like a more major upgrade than it is, while admitting it really isn’t much of an upgrade. But Nuance or MacSpeech or whatever they were then pulled the exact same stunt with 1.5 just a couple of years back. “Fool me once…”
But version numbers are just marketeer’s puffery. What new features does it provide?
Supposedly, it gets in your way less than the old version. They now recognize that people use their keyboard and mice even when operating voice recognition software. Good for them. That’s a 2.1 feature if I ever heard of one.
- Better integration with Microsoft Word 2011? That’s a 2.01 feature.
- Using an iPhone as a remote microphone? Generously, a 2.1 feature.
- Social media commands? Puh-lease.
- Better auto-formatting of dates, numbers, etc.? 2.01.
Ah, but now, at last we come to the real reason they want me to upgrade: it doesn’t support Mac OS X 10.7 “Lion.” Whiskey-tango-hotel? That’s not a reason to buy an upgrade. It’s a reason to flood their tech support lines demanding a fix.
(Note: the ArsTechnica story says it’s a free upgrade to 2.0 users. Not so, according to the email I got from Nuance.)