Avid’s “New Thinking”

18 03 2008

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the announcements that Avid came out with yesterday. It’s the first part of their attempt to right the ship that has been listing to the side, as of late. More announcements are coming, particularly some new hardware. But this press release deals mainly with business practices, and less with tech-y stuff.

Which puts it right up my alley.

Chief among the changes is that they are beginning to simplify their product line. They are completely eliminating Xpress Pro, and dropping the price of Media Composer Soft so that no one will pay more than $2495 for the full-on MC. Students can purchase the Educational Version for the much much lower price of $295 which doesn’t have some of the additional software that comes with the full version, but is an absolute complete version of the Media Composer.

Here’s the amazing thing about this. Not too long ago, when you had to buy breakout boxes and other stuff from Avid, a typical Media Composer cost you $60,000 to get in the door. Now you get that for $2500. And it’s a better version of MC than the Adrenaline. Let’s do the math on that — that’s less than 5% of that old price. If you’re a student, you’re getting MC for about 1/2 of 1% of the original price.

Amazing.

The other things that Avid announced yesterday revolved around the user community. Anyone who’s had the patience to listen to me babble over the last few years knows that I’ve felt that the company has not been doing a good enough job of getting tutorials and documentation out there (tips, tricks, techniques, you know.. the kind of stuff that the Final Cut community puts out in droves). Now, it appears that they’re going to try and fix that. They’ve started a new community web site and are encouraging people to upload training videos. In other conversations I’ve had with them, they tell me that they’re looking into ways of seeding this phenomenon and, folks, if you want to help out please speak up to them, because they seem to be way open to listening.

Yeah, some people want to hear about the new hardware. But, for me, that wouldn’t be “new thinking.” The really “new” part of the announcement, seems to be their commitment to interacting with us — the users.

Let’s hope they keep it up.

The press release is here. The new community site is here.

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One response

21 03 2008
KevinB

I had blogged on this announcement earlier, but had more simply raised the question: what do you think? It’s nice to see this kind of response from Norman, but also good to see that Avid’s message seems to be resonating well. Actions speak louder than words of course, but it seems the customer base has received the news well and is waiting to see some positive results.

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