Ambrosia Snapz Pro X 2.0: Dubious upgrade practices

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
February 10th, 2004 • 8:03 am

Ambrosia have released a new version of their flagship screen capture utility Snapz Pro X. While the interface has been significantly revamped, the only really big new feature is advanced video capture.

I am a registered user of Snapz Pro X 1.0, and I use it almost exclusively for static screen shots. The Purchase Options page for Snapz Pro X 2.0 makes it sound as if upgrading to Snapz Pro X 2 is free for registered Snapz Pro X 1.0 users if all they really want is the image capture ability. You can use your existing 1.0 registration code with the 2.0 version.

The problem is that, every time you launch the application, you get this modal dialog:

Snapz Pro X 2.0 Upgrade Dialog

I don’t know about you, but I find that this “friendly” reminder is less than clear about the situation for registered 1.0 users who just want to use 2.0’s image capture ability. The first time I saw it, I thought that the 2.0 application wanted me to re-enter my registration code. So I clicked on “Register…” and re-entered my code in the registration application and everything was fine.

Then the next time I launch the application, I got the same dialog again. I thought it was a bug and emailed Ambrosia’s tech support about it, only to be told that this was the “normal” behaviour.

In other words, the upgrade to 2.0 is free if all you want is to use the image capture ability, but you are still forced to go through this reminder every time you launch the application (and you must click on the “Not yet” button). Worse still, the phrasing of the reminder and in particular its last paragraph make it sound suspiciously like I am using some kind of demo version of a product that I have not purchased yet.

I guess Ambrosia Software’s idea of a “free” upgrade is not the same as mine. If an upgrade is free, I don’t expect to get a poorly phrased “friendly” reminder each time I launch the application.

I am all for supporting small, independent Mac developers and everything, but this is not my idea of user-friendliness and is not very Mac-like.

6 Responses to “Ambrosia Snapz Pro X 2.0: Dubious upgrade practices”

  1. Patrick Wynne says:

    Are you wedded to using SnapzPro? ‘Cause that would be enough to make me swear off an app forever.

  2. Pierre Igot says:

    Well, I could probably do without it and use OS X’s built-in cmd-shift-3 or cmd-shift-4 instead. But I like some of the additional options SPX offers. And I do own the 1.0 version :). I guess I could just keep on using SPX 1.0 instead of 2.0. But the interface in 2 is nicer. Oh well. No big deal, I guess.

  3. YumYum says:

    I was interested in buying Snapz Pro, so I emailed them and asked. I got a reply from David Dunham (whose name I recognize as being the programmer of Acta many years ago), and he about the modal dialog box, “The only reason that would happen is if you enter a license code for Snapz Pro X 1.X with Movies into Snapz Pro X 2. The notice actually explains this in detail, but apparently very few people actually read it. If you purchase a license code for Snapz Pro X 2 static image capture, you’ll never see the reminder again….”

    So, I’m guessing that’s what happened with you. Maybe there’s a way of getting a different code for yourself that’s image-capture-only so you won’t see the dialog box….

    Me, I’m pretty sure I’m going to buy the non-movie version for myself, because it seems better designed than competitive products. Cheers.

  4. Pierre Igot says:

    Maybe instead of criticizing Mac users for not reading the manual, David should spend some time trying to understand the absurdity of his position: People who have a license code for Snapz Pro X 1.x without movie capture (cheaper) can use their license code for Snapz Pro X 2.0 without movie capture without getting the dialog box. OTOH, people (like me) who have a license code for Snapz Pro X 1.x with movie capture (more expensive) can use their license code for Snapz Pro X 2.0 without movie capture, but they’ll get the modal dialog box every time.

    How much sense does this make? The folks at Ambrosia do appear to have a bit of an attitude problem.

  5. YumYum says:

    I agree that the dialog box should have a “don’t remind me again” checkbox for people in your situation.

    But I see the other side to it too. I bet for most others they bought the movie version and would WANT to know (or be reminded) about how to regain movie capture.

  6. x says:

    why does it contact the navy?

Leave a Reply

Comments are closed.