Taking License

Jan 6th, 2008 Posted in uncategorized | Comments Off on Taking License

Many software companies license their software to a single user on multiple personal machines. When I buy software from those companies I am free to install it on my desktop computer and on my laptop computer.

Apple licenses Leopard for a single machine, not for a single user. That means I need to buy one license (at $129.00) for my desktop and another license for my laptop. $258.00 plus tax. Unacceptable.

Apple created a "Family Pack" — five licenses for $199.99 — as a way for people to have multiple licenses at a lower cost. Still unacceptable. "You can give the other three licenses away," said the employee at the Apple Store.

I bought the Family Pack at a ridiculous $216.71, but I wanted to think about the situation before opening it and installing it. Would it really do any harm to buy the single license and install it on my two personal machines? Could I sell the remaining three licenses in my Family Pack and recoup some of the money I spent?

I’m comfortable with the decision I finally made, although it’s still not ideal. I forgot I’m eligible for the academic pricing. I will return the Family Pack to the Apple Store, and I will buy two licenses for $138.00 under academic pricing at the University Bookstore. The result: I play by the rules and only have to pay a semi-ridiculous price.

I don’t always play by the rules, but if I’m going to break ’em I need to feel confident in my logic and reasoning about why I’m breaking ’em. I’m loyal to Apple, but situations like these annoy me and erode my allegiance.