Q: Why is Avid offering a Media Composer subscription license?
A: Many of our customers have asked for this option and we delivered. That’s why you now have a choice—gain access to the latest Media Composer toolset as needed on a low-cost monthly or annual basis, significantly lowering entry to the industry’s most trusted editing tool, or purchase and own it outright, as before. World class Avid support and software upgrades are now included in all plans. However, perpetual licenses must be renewed after the first year to continue receiving support and upgrades. New support options means help is there when you need it. See the Media Composer License Comparison Guide (above) for more information about these new Media Composer licensing and support options.
Q: Isn’t that going to cost me more over time? What is the benefit for my business?
A: We know your budget is tighter than ever, making the decision to keep software up to date or invest in new products more difficult. These new licensing options make it easier for you to get new software features and enhancements the moment they are ready, as opposed to waiting for the next big release. On top of all that, Avid support and software upgrades are now included in all plans which previously required an additional purchase. Most importantly, Avid now puts choice in the hands of our customers, enabling you to decide how you acquire, use, and interact with our tools.
Q: I’m an existing Media Composer user; what happens to my software now? Do I have to upgrade to this new licensing model?
A: If you have an existing Avid Expert Plus or Elite Support plan, you will be able to upgrade to Media Composer 8 when it is available as long as your contract is still active. If your contract has expired or you don’t have an Avid Support plan, you have the choice of purchasing an Avid Support renewal plan, which provides support and updates/upgrades for one year, or not renewing and remaining at your current level of software. Outside of the renewal program, you can continue to run your current version of software indefinitely. To take advantage of the $299 price for the Avid Support plan, you MUST renew in 2014 or renew when your existing support contract expires. Your other option is to simply subscribe to a monthly or annual subscription plan.
Q: How can I verify the expiration date of my support contract?
A: You can verify the expiration date of your Avid contract by logging into your Support Center portal from within the “My Account” section at account.avid.com.
Q: Why did Avid discontinue NewsCutter?
A: Most of the news-centric editing features introduced in past NewsCutter releases have also been added to Media Composer over time. Some specific news features that remained were based on legacy tape workflows. The most unique feature of NewsCutter—the NRCS (News Room Computer System) tool—is now available as an option for Media Composer. The Media Composer | NewsCutter Option enables you to open an iNEWS or ENPS interactive session within Media Composer, where you can view rundowns, scripts, and edit video to scripts by dropping selected text directly to the timeline. Additional displays and settings are now integrated into Media Composer, so all film, television, and news editors now have access to the same tools in one truly versatile application.
Q: Do I have to change the way I buy Avid software? Can I just continue to buy an upgrade when I need it?
A: If you have Media Composer but aren’t currently on an Avid Support plan, you should sign up for the yearly Avid Support renewal plan for $299 USD, which includes software upgrades/updates and support for one year from the date of purchase. That’s like paying for a single upgrade, but getting a whole year’s worth of updates and upgrades, plus a team of world-class support experts available when you need help. If you neglect to join the Avid Support plan in 2014 (or at the end of your support contract), you will have to purchase the product anew, or subscribe to a monthly or annual plan in order to continue to receive the latest features and support.
If you haven’t upgraded Media Composer recently (you own a release prior to Media Composer v6.5), you can effectively “upgrade” your license to v8 by purchasing an Avid Support renewal plan at $299 in 2014. This includes the Avid Support plan that provides software updates/upgrades and support for one year. At the end of that year, the software will continue to work, but to continue receiving new features and support, you will want to let the plan auto-renew yearly for $299 USD.
Q: I like to buy Avid software, hardware, and support from my favorite reseller; will I still be able to do this or has this new subscription-based model ended that?
A: You will still be able to buy software, hardware, and Avid Support plans from your local reseller as before. However, monthly subscriptions are only available through the Avid Online Store. Avid resellers will continue to sell perpetual software licenses, as they’ve always done, while also offering annual subscriptions, yearly renewals, and floating licenses.
Q: What happens to my existing Avid Support plan under this new licensing system?
A: Your existing contract will continue to be honored. When the contract expires, you will have more options available for you to decide how your system will be licensed and supported. A basic level of Avid Support is now included as standard with all Avid license options. If you have additional support requirements, there are other Avid Support plans available to fit your needs. See the Media Composer Licensing Options Guide (above).
Q: I travel a lot and need Media Composer to always work. If I’m not able to get network access, will my software still work?
A: Yes. With a subscription license, the software will attempt to contact the authentication servers approximately every 30 days. As your renewal period approaches, if your system has been unable to reach the servers, Media Composer will remind you to connect to the Internet for authentication. A grace period is also used so that there is adequate time to find a connection. If your Internet connectivity is frequently sparse, then the better option would be to buy a perpetual license, which will never expire. The choice is yours.
Q: What happens to all of the other software that came bundled with Media Composer, such as Avid FX, Avid DVD, Sorenson Squeeze, and Boris Continuum Complete? Are they available with any of these licensing options?
A: While many partner plug-ins and applications are available as “lite” versions included in Avid’s subscription offerings, full perpetual licenses for Avid FX (aka Boris Red), Sorenson Squeeze, iZotope Insight, and NewBlue Titler Pro v2 are available as part of the Avid Production Pack or available for individual purchase through the Avid Marketplace. Please note that since DVD production requirements have not changed in many years, Avid DVD is no longer been developed or sold.
Q: Is there a version of Media Composer that won’t “time out” if I don’t keep paying my monthly subscription fee? I don’t want to worry about the software no longer working if I’m without Internet access or I haven’t paid the monthly bill.
A: Yes, Avid offers you a choice between a low-cost monthly or annual subscription license, or a perpetual license that you can purchase and own outright. The main difference is that a monthly license offers a very low-cost way to add a Media Composer seat as needed, but will “time out” if you let your subscription lapse, while the perpetual license will function forever. However, with a perpetual license, you will need to renew your annual support plan each year to ensure that you continue to receive the latest updates and access to world-class customer support if you need help
Q: If I buy Media Composer outright (a perpetual license), how do I upgrade it? Will software patches and bug fixes be free like they’ve always been?
A: If you buy Media Composer, it includes standard Avid Support and software upgrades for one year after purchase. Following the first year, you should auto-renew your Avid Support plan to continue getting software updates and upgrades for another year. Fixes and new features are displayed in the Application Manager in Media Composer whenever new software or a patch is available for download. If you cancel your auto-renewing Avid Support plan, you will have to purchase the product anew if you wish to continue receiving software updates and support.
Q: I don’t want to pay month to month. I didn’t like it when the other “A” company did this, and I don’t like that Avid is doing it now. I want to buy or upgrade when I feel there are features that I need.
A: Monthly subscriptions are only one of the new licensing choices for those who wish to add Media Composer seats instantly at a very low cost. This enables you to ramp editing systems up and down based on your individual or business needs. With an annual subscription, you can save even more on your monthly costs. Of course you also still have the option of buying the software outright for $1,299 (USD), which includes one year of Avid Support and software upgrades from the date of purchase. To continue receiving updates/upgrades and support after the first year, simply join the yearly Avid Support renewal plan for the low price of $299 (USD).
Q: What if I buy and don’t register. Can my “year of Avid Support and software upgrades” start from that date?
A: The registration process has changed from how it was handled previously. When a customer purchases and redeems the download code they are automatically registered at that time.
Q: I see that this version is designated as Media Composer 8, but I don’t see any big new features in this release like Avid usually delivers.
A: Don’t worry—they’re coming. For this initial launch of Media Composer, we want to make sure that our new subscription offerings have a smooth deployment and that all of our new subscribers get the best experience. We are even creating a forum on community.avid.com specifically for the subscription offerings to ensure that customers receive the correct information, pricing and guidance. We will then release a software update that includes many exciting new features, coming later in Q2, 2014.
Q: With a monthly subscription, can I use Media Composer on more than one computer if I’m at work and then want to take a project home on my laptop?
A: No. Whether you have a monthly or annual subscription, your Media Composer license can only be used on a single system | platform, whether you use a Mac or PC. Depending on your business, floating licenses can be an attractive and easy option for dynamically assigning licenses across your network and enabling editors to check out licenses for specific time periods. For more information, see the Media Composer Floating Licensing and Benefits Guide (below).
Q: What happens to my software if I stop paying my monthly subscription?
A: If you allow a subscription to lapse, Media Composer will cease to function the next time it pings the authentication server at the beginning of your next renewal cycle.
Q: What happens to my subscription license if I’m not connected to the Internet? Will my software stop working?
A: Not necessarily. The software pings the authentication server approximately every 30 days. As the system approaches the renewal date, Media Composer will send you daily reminders to connect to the Internet so that the license can be verified.
Q: Will the Avid Support Plan prices be offered internationally? How will I buy?
A: Yes. You can buy directly from Avid or from your favorite reseller.
Q: How does this new license model work with other software I want, such as the Symphony Option, ScriptSync, and PhraseFind Options?
A: Media Composer | Symphony Option, Media Composer | NewsCutter Option, Media Composer | ScriptSync Option, and Media Composer | PhraseFind Options are available to buy and own outright, as before. The Symphony Option is included in Media Composer monthly and annual subscriptions—along with a full bundle of third-party creative tools—starting at just $49.99/month USD. See the Media Composer Licensing Options Guide (above) for prices for various Options and suites.
Q: How can I determine which Options I have already?
A: You can verify what Options you have now for use with your Media Composer by logging into the “My Account” section at account.avid.com and choosing Your Downloads. This will show you the items you have purchased and/or redeemed. If you have a current version of the application installed you can launch the Avid Application Manager to see what options you have activated.
Q: I’ve got multiple seats of Media Composer in my facility. Month-to-month subscriptions are going to be a management headache for me. Do you have a plan that makes sense for my business?
A: If your facility has 20 or more seats of Media Composer, then a floating license server is an excellent solution. We now offer floating licensing for Media Composer, enabling you to quickly and easily distribute licenses across your facility, on demand, from a single, centralized server running on your existing hardware (Windows OS). And because Media Composer editors can collaborate both locally and remotely, you can extend your production beyond the walls of your facility. Floating licenses can also be “checked out” for specific time periods by the system administrator when systems need to be taken off premises. For more information, see the Media Composer Floating Licensing and Benefits Guide (below).
Q: How do I manage a mix of license options with the floating license server? Can I have multiple software versions?
A: You can buy smaller packs of licenses for Options such as Symphony, PhraseFind, ScriptSync, and Newscutter. These Options are licensed separately by the server. For added control, the Floating Server software will allow you to grant specific Options to individual machines on your network.
Q: My facility has a lot of freelance editors coming and going. I don’t feel a subscription model works well for my business. Do you have any other options?
A: With the new Media Composer | Software subscription and floating license offerings, you can now scale your workgroup as needed—even at a moment’s notice. Add additional Media Composer seats on a month-to-month basis when production demands extra editors, and scale them back between jobs. With floating licensing, you can quickly and easily distribute licenses across your facility, on demand, from a single, centralized server. And because Media Composer editors can collaborate both locally and remotely, you can extend your production beyond the walls of your facility.
Q: If my facility uses floating licensing, can I take a laptop offsite away from the building and still access the software?
A: Yes. To access licenses off-premises with a floating license system, the server administrator can assign a license to your system and allow it to be “checked out” for a period of time. Similar to a library, but with more control, the license can then be set to automatically “time out” at the end of a project.
Q: I use a dongle to license my software; will that continue to work?
A: Yes. Dongles are supported as part of Avid’s perpetual license offerings as they are today. In this case, the only difference is that you will need to purchase a yearly Avid Support plan, which will provide new features, patches, and enhancements as well as access to standard Avid Support.
Q: What is included with standard Avid Support and are there other support packages available? How is this different from Avid Support in the past?
A: Whether you’re utilizing the subscription and perpetual licensing Options, Avid Support plans are the same. In all cases, additional Avid Support Options are available to add to the included standard Avid Support package. Avid Elite Support provides unlimited phone and email incidents as well as hardware coverage. See the Media Composer Licensing Options Guide (above).