Tech News and Commentary
Dave and the team discuss HP buying HyperX, Apple and autonomous cars, EA making college football games again, a new state of matter, bad news for an electric truck company, and more.
Bruce in North Hollywood, California listens the the Podcasts – now hosted by Blubrry and asked: “I’m buying a new laptop and a lot of the programs I purchased have registration keys. I’m wondering, are most registration keys tied to a specific piece of hardware like my laptop, or can they be transferred to a new laptop?”
Bruce, it will depend on the specific piece of software.
Some are tied to only to the license key and can be ported to other devices, others (famously Windows itself) will check the hardware theyre installed on and lock themselves to it.
For the most part you will be able to move licenses across computers, but there may be some hurdles not just with hardware but with the concept of active installations.
Lots of software products call home these days and you may find that a remote server thinks you have two active installations when you only paid for a single license.
If you run into that problem, uninstalling the software from your old laptop should eliminate the problem.
The most likely case is that youll be able to transfer your software – and nothing except for the OS itself will be locked to the old hardware, but your mileage may vary.
Robert and asked: “My Broadband company utilizes Plume products with their service. Plume appears to be a subscription offering with no opportunity to purchase outright without an ongoing monthly fee. I’m hesitant to rent and pay forever if I can purchase an equal or better product. I would appreciate your thoughts on suitable alternatives.”
Robert, if youre using just Plume hardware then you can try something like an Orbi or Eero router, but if youre using their services you wont really find any alternatives that dont require a monthly fee.
Plume seems to not just provide whole home WiFi but also tie in with support systems to let them diagnose how each device is working remotely to avoid house calls. That service wont scale well without a reliable backend, and those reliable backends have variable costs that better align to licenses than they do to one time purchases. In other words, if you stop buying devices this month, theyll still have to pay for their backend next month, so theyll want to make sure that you never cost them but dont pay them.
It looks like Plume also offers analytics to better understand what types of the devices your clients use which is a pretty typical pay us and well give you analytics you need case.
Your only options here may be to weigh the cost of building an alternative vs continuing to pay the license, but thats very unlikely to be a better deal than what youre getting now since youd be forced to run a parallel business to your own.
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