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The Net Takeaway: X1 says "New business model: Take away features, charge more!"


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X1 says "New business model: Take away features, charge more!" · 06/03/2007 12:05 AM, Tech

In the latest round of X1’s attempt to figure out how to make money while treating users as poorly as possible, they have now taken back everything that they gave away before. This is version 5.6.4, the “stab in the back” version.

You might recall that in X1 starts to open up…, I had started to revisit my dislike of their business practices, and to think that they had finally decided to work with users instead of screw them.

Well, they decided that was a poor approach. The latest is on this forum posting where they link to the comparison.

There are features most users don’t care about now behind the pay wall such as the below:

But here’s the real “screw you”, “bait and switch”, “we still don’t respect our users” set of removals:

So, yet again, the same folks who decided to “phone home” without telling users and didn’t allow them to turn it off, the ones who tried to say that the “free” version was the same as the old paid version without admitting that they removed features like network search, now goes back on what they gave just a few short months ago. At least now they make it clear: you download, you lose features. I guess that’s an improvement.

It used to take a company the size of Microsoft to treat its users this way, but X1 shows that it can be done by companies of any size.

Feel free to let your IT group know that unless they need the shared index of the X1 Enterprise product, they can tell X1 where to shove it and use Copernic Desktop Search for free. Still highly recommended, still in use on my boxes, and still a winner.

(BTW, Copernic has full group policy handling in their free version, at Copernic Network Deployment. Starts to make you wonder just what X1 is trying to pull?)

Look, its their product. They can shoot themselves in the foot or head all they want to, pull all the features, have no free version, whatever. But to play these games with their users is just wrong. Its disrespectful, and it violates trust. This has been a hallmark of their go-to-market strategy since the earliest days, so you think I would learn. I just expect better from the smart guys over there.

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