Smile Software released yesterday the new version 6 of TextExpander and switched from a one-time-fee model for major releases to a subscription service with monthly fees. Certainly a comprehensible decision, why the jump on the SaaS-bandwagon, but for me it’s time to say goodbye to TextExpander.
The new pricing plans.
I’ve been an avid user of TextExpander for about 9 months now and bought a licences for version 5 when Stacksocial offered a -30% discount last September. So it cost me $30 instead of the regular $45 . The upgrade from version 4 to version 5 cost $20 at that time. Still a bit pricy, but I’m happy to support developers, who make great software that gives me an added value. And TextExpander really grew on me over the time.
The new pricing plans start at $3.96/month (billed yearly) respectively $4.95/month for individuals and go up to $9.95/month for teams (which doesn’t relate to me). In other words, the service would now cost $47.52 resp. $59.40 per year. OK, existing users get a 50% discount for the first, but later the price is even higher than a standard version 5 licence.
What’s in TextExpander 6?
That’s the point where Smile Software leaves me behind. Certainly, there a few improvements under the hood and also a few minor features might be added, but overall nothing that would force my click-finger to subscribe. Quite the contrary, as I can’t discover any major benefits for me:
- With version 6 they introduce their own syncing engine and cut-off syncing via cloud services as Dropbox or GDrive. Come on!
- Unlimited usage and free app updates. Seriously?
- A Windows (beta) is now available for Mac users who like to use their snippets at work, too, but have to struggle at work with Windows PC’s. It’s a nice idea, but companies -especially larger organisations- tend to restrict 3rd party software installations and access to cloud services.
- TextExpander iOS app is free now. Well, that’s cool, but I don’t use my iPhone for writing lager texts and I use just a handful shortcuts with the iOS built-in shortcut system.
So, why should I subscribe for a high-priced service that offers no benefits compared to the current version and passes on product and development cost for features that don’t relate to me?
My consequence: I switched to aText.
The answer is: I won’t subscribe and went with an alternative.
One could say: stick with the current TextExpander 5 and stop nagging. Sure, I could. But some day, maybe not too far in the future, Smile Software will abandon the support for version 5.
Thus, I looked for an alternative and found several recommendations for aText.
aText has the same look & feel like TextExpander und covers the same functions, so users who want to migrate won’t notice any difference. But for just $4.99. One-time.
It also directly imports TextEpander snippets, so that migration works like a charm. Some more complex snippets containig fields needed some tweaking after import, but that was easily done and I am a happy camper again.
There is no iOS app for aText, but I don’t bother as I don’t need one.