U.S. Software Policy
Heidelberg Engineering has established the following policies in order to address customer concerns about software obsolescence and the pricing of software revisions.
The company may provide minor software revisions, called “updates”. Updates are provided at no charge during the life of the product as part of the terms of the original sale. Minor software changes help sustain the product, eliminate minor bugs, and add basic functions to keep up with other changes in the computer world.
Major revisions to the software are called “upgrades”. Software upgrades are not included with the original sale and may require payment. The company typically charges for major software revisions when it has made a significant investment in the software, for example, creating a new application module or creating new methods of analysis. Charging for significant software changes ensures a steady stream of new ideas and features which extend the life of the product.
Listed below are our policies defining the differences between software updates and software upgrades and the charges that may be involved. In addition, we explain our policy for those situations where a new upgrade becomes available shortly after purchase of the earlier version.
Updates – Minor Software Revisions
A minor software revision is considered an “update” and can be identified by a change to the version number behind the decimal point. For example, if the existing version is 2.0, then new versions 2.0.1, 2.1.0, 2.2.0, etc, are all updates to version 2.0. Software updates are provided at no charge. In order to obtain these updates you may be asked to download them from the internet. In other cases, the company may decide to send the update by mail.
Upgrades – Major Software Revisions
An “upgrade” is a major software revision identified by a new software version number in front of the decimal point, such as 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, etc. Upgrades are typically characterized by one or more of the following changes:
- the addition of significant new functions
- a new application or application module
- a new type of analysis
- the introduction or expansion of clinical data
Due to the amount of investment needed to create the software revision, Heidelberg Engineering may charge a fee for upgrading to the new version.
Sequential vs. Non-sequential Upgrade
Sequential upgrades, (i.e. you own version 1.0 and the upgrade is version 2.0) are typically offered at a discount off the price of the new full version software.
Non-sequential upgrades, (i.e. you own version 1.0 and the current upgrade is version 3.0) are typically offered at the full version software price. The upgrade purchase includes the software only. On-site installation and training may be available for an additional charge.
Software upgrades may also require the upgrade of your hardware due to advances in computer technology. Before ordering a software upgrade, customers should always check the hardware requirements for the new software version in order to ensure compatibility. Hardware upgrades are not included with the purchase of a software upgrade.
Upgrade Protection Policy
Heidelberg Engineering is committed to continuous innovation and product enhancement. We offer a 16-week upgrade policy to protect your investment. If a new software upgrade is released within 16 weeks of your equipment installation date (or software-upgrade ship date) you are eligible to purchase the new software upgrade for the price difference between the two versions.
For example, if you bought software version 1.0 on February 1 for $10 and a new version 2.0 is released between February 1 and May 23 for $11, your cost to purchase the sequential upgrade will be $1 [new version price – old version price]. If the new version is offered at the same price as the previous version, the upgrade will be available at no charge.