Business practice of skylum ,,new programme,, Neo

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    Steve Ratts

    Personally, I've stopped doing business with Skylum and have no intention of resuming until they honor their promises for updates on the many things I have purchased (not holding my breath - this will never happen and we all know it). Looking back, I'm really quite ashamed of my own poor learning curve. I bought Luminar 2018, Aurora 2019, and then Luminar 2019 before I finally wised up. Of these, the only product of theirs I use at all is Aurora, and god only know when they'll ever get around to updating that - it can't even ready Canon CR3 files!

    Andrea, you've hit their business model squarely on the head. You would be very wise to take this into consideration before giving them any more money.

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    Roy Blackwell

    As an owner of Luminar AI (or any other Skylum photo editing software app I believe) you can purchase a 1-seat license of Luminar Neo for about $35 US. That is a fantastic deal. An annual upgrade of ON1 Photo Raw 2021 to the 2022 version just cost me $79. I see no rip off by Skylum here at all. 

    The preorder seems to be going very well: over 10,000 in just a matter of two or three days.

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    Steve Ratts

    Skylum's history is a long list of abandonware. Rather than offer updates to existing products, they spend their effort on re-packaging, re-branding, and selling an update as if it's a whole new product. Their promises of features that will be in previous versions will be cast to the side.

    Yes, those who purchased Luminar AI can get a pre-order of Luminar Leo for a reasonable price. Wait a bit and Luminar Neo will be the next thing they abandon to pivot and offer yet another so called "new product". 

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    Roy Blackwell

    Steve Ratts: I will not comment on Skylum's marketing strategies, but you do realize software companies that make photo editing software are of one of two basic models: subscription or 12-18 month paid upgrades. The only company that does not seem to follow one of these two models is Serif and their Affinity Photo app. I do suppose at some point Serif will publish a major upgrade that will be a paid version. 

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    c0ld c0ne

    And you do realize that abandonware fits neither of these models?

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    Roy Blackwell

    Product naming conventions aside, I do not see that either Luminar 4 or Luminar AI currently fit the definition of abandonware. Luminar Neo easily could have been called Luminar 5.

    Luminar 2018->Luminar 3->Luminar 4->Luminar Neo

    Luminar AI -> ? (future uncertain in my mind, especially if all its features are in Neo)

    Aurora HDR -> ? (no updates in over 2 years - Skylum, update this app please!)

    Photolemur 3 -> end of life

    AirMagic - > end of life

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    Matt Orth

    Your model 2 includes products like CaptureOne.  You pay for CaptureOne, you get minor upgrades and tweaks for free, then you pay for major updates.  But you keep the same basic architecture, the same DAM, the same edits continue to work.  When they upgrade you pay for more features in the same software. 

    That’s not how Shylum does it.  AI was not an upgrade to L4 (as their reps told us endlessly).  You could not migrate from L4 to AI.  AI did not retain the same features as L4 while adding new ones (layers, remember them?). And Shylum promised one year of performance and compatibility upgrades (and ask the Canon R5 users how that’s turned out) to L4, after which it would be abandoned.  Just like L3.  

    Shylum is the very definition of abandonware.  Your “progression” diagrams are just plain wrong. 

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    Roy Blackwell

    Matt Orth: You are correct in that the underlying architecture of Skylum products (L4/LAI/Neo) have continued to change with the side effect that the catalog (database) from one product to the next has not been compatible. That is a significant issue. It is why I have never used Luminar 4 or Luminar AI to manage my photos. Using another app like Lightroom and using the plugin functionality would be one workaround. I do hope Skylum can settle on a catalog format and stick to it or at least provide a way to upgrade it so users are not left with photo edits that cannot be used in a new product.

    Update 9/17/21: Skylum has announced they will create a utility to migrate a Luminar 4 and/or a Luminar AI catalog to Luminar Neo. They also stated it would not be available at launch but sometime later.

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    Londinense

    About two years ago I bought both Luminar 4 and On1 PhotoRaw to see which would work better as a Lightroom substitute. Fortunately I opted for PR and have been using L4 mostly for the occasional sky replacement and sending it back to PR. This has proved to be a wise decision.

    I am glad to say that the latest version of PR will support PS plug-ins, so I have taken a chance and bought Neo at the discount price of $34. Glad to say I have no catalogues from Luminar and I am happy to have paid what I did for a plug-in (most plug-ins cost way more than that). PR is coming out with its own sky replacement, so It will be interesting to see how they compare. If the cable and power line removal function in Neo works well it will have been worth the price to me.

    All together, what I have spent on Luminar and On1 products is way less than a LR subscription. However, I do understand others' frustrations.

     

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    noxwin

    So I subscribed to Luminar AI (1year) and now Skylum releases new AI features without implementing these in the existing software. This does not sound like a sustainable product portfolio at all and it's hard to reason why you split AI-features into multiple softwares...

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    Member

    @RoyBlackwell

    Thank you for your participation in this post and your opinion. How many of the pre-orderers got the programme for free? I already mentioned that an acquaintance of mine has a pre-order for Neo in his Skylum account, without ever having pre-ordered Neo. He doesn't have to pay anything for this pre-order from Neo.

     

    Another question is how many of the pre-orderers upgrade from luminar ai to Neo and how many of the pre-orderers buy it a programme from Skylum for the first time? that would all have to be listed in detail to even get a detailed overview of this pure total number of pre-orderers to draw conclusions from.

     

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    Roy Blackwell

    Member: Obviously, we do not have access to that kind information. 

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    Roy Blackwell

    I suspect in another day or two, three at most, the preorder will have reached 30000. I look forward to further details in the coming weeks before release, probably in mid December I am guessing.

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    Londinense

    Is that counter for real?

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    c0ld c0ne

    Is that counter for real?

    The only party who can vouch for that has a vested interest, so caveat emptor.

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    Matt Orth

    At the moment Luminar doesn't have a dedicated printing dialog, so it doesn't fully support all printing options. A workaround is to use Luminar for editing and another application for printing. We'll address this in future updates for Luminar 3 but at the moment I don't have an estimate for when this is going to happen.

    I’m sure it’s as real as the print module they promised three years ago for Luminar 3.

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    Member

    Roy Blackwell I'm looking forward to December 2022, when all of you who bought Lumina Neo will be looking down the tube and then Skylum will have released the XYZ KI programme and want more money. The programme also runs with KI or AI and you have to look for differences with a magnifying glass. But when Skylum says that it will be a new programme, that's just the way it is and you have to pay again.But some of you will get the new xyz programme free of charge. How this works, who gets this xyz programme for free and who has to pay for it, that remains the secret of skylum. As already described above, the counter is nonsensical as long as nothing is clear on what basis it counts. What are 30,000 sales for a programme that is offered worldwide..... nothing. But with the advertising budget Skylum has, it doesn't matter. In the next few weeks and months the websites will be flooded with advertising from Skylum. Instead of customer loyalty, Skylum is mainly looking for new customers.

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    Ross Andrew

    Like many others on this and other forums, I'm very disappointed with how Skylum treats its customers I was quite enthusiastic, but no more. I first purchased Aurora HDR that I still use occasionally, but no more updates. Then Luminar4 & AI I hardly use these now in my workflow, again no more updates, just more brand new products to learn yet again. Complete waste of time & money, not living up to the Skylum marketing spin, Lesson learned!!

    Now completely back to Affiinity, that is still updating their product as promised when it first came onto the market.

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