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Re: Bundling of layered software
Date: Thu, 22 Mar 90 11:10 PST
From: BUCKMAN@ALAN.kahuna.decnet.lasc-research.lockheed.com (Eric
Date: Thu, 22 Mar 90 09:50 CST
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Donald H. Mitchell)
Date: Thu, 22 Mar 90 09:05 CST
From: Richard Billington <email@example.com>
Symbolics has been a leader in "bundling" tools and extensions to lisp (tools: windows,
zmacs, debugger, examiners - extensions: loop, flavors, clim) to the point where every
major addition to what is becoming a part of the accepted "minimum production lisp
environment" is something that has become a standard part of Genera for at least a
couple of years already.
I've changed my mind. Now I agree! The full richness of the development
environment is THE selling point for Symbolics's products. Bundling would
keep Symbolics well ahead of the competition. In the current unbundled
configuration in which Statice and Concordia are each more expensive than
Genera and more expensive than the analogs that I can point to when trying to
convince management that I need them, I've been very reluctant to try to get
them. In fact, I haven't purchased Statice (although I'd love to) and I've
only now purchased one copy of Concordia. Even at that, my Symbolics sales
rep tried to ensure that I REALLY needed Concordia and wasn't buying it merely
to extend the development environment. (A strange strategy :-).
How much do the high-powered CASE tools cost these days? If
Genera+Statice+Concordia+CLIM was roughly equal and bundled, I think I could sell
it to my management. As it is, I have to compare Genera at $9500 with Lucid
at $2500, Concordia at $10000 with Interleaf at $1500, and Statice at $10000
(or is it $7500?) with Oracle at (how much), and CLIM with OpenLook and
Motif. Well, anyway, you get the picture. I have to have four arguments when
only one would do (Four makes me look like I'm asking for more than my share).
What the above correspondent is asking for is a price reduction, not
bundling. In fact, he is making the classic marketing argument for
UNBUNDLING of products-- i.e., if he is having trouble comparing $9.5K
Genera with $2.5K (actually $4K, but that's a side issue) Lucid, then to
resolve that problem, Symbolics should unbundle the Lucid-equivalent
functionality and sell it for $2.5K, and sell the Genera "value-added"
for whatever the market will bear.
I'd vote one big "DITTO" for at least the 15 or so Symbolics machines in our lab
at Lockheed, and another DITTO to the 60 or so machines we have around that we
are trying to deliver software to. For instance, we did purchase one copy of
Statice, but have recently decided to postpone using it, where one dominant
factor is that a good number of our Lockheed customers cannot be hooked up to
our ethernet (security issues), and therefore couldn't use our Statice server,
hence, our software would not be "free" to our Lockheed customers that already
have Symbolics machines. However, if Symbolics had bundled the stuff together
(and charged maybe a onetime "upgrade" additional software maintanance fee, and
maybe even upped our software maintainance costs because they were now
maintaining a larger piece of software i.e. Genera+Statice+Concordia+CLIM, then
development and delivery might work out better for us. Of course, I don't think
I really know what all the implications are, but I do feel that a "Bundled
Genera" option from Symbolics would certainly open up possibilities.
Please elaborate-- I don't quite follow. I'm sure your local sales rep
could work out a good deal to add Statice to all 60 systems at once for an
attractive price. Have you proposed this to him/her?