Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China

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For those who care about such things, the title says it all:
http://www.noodls.com/view/35AEF71FED0C4035C1F9EA872525988B2CCC323E

Dave.

Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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From Taswegia to Sydney to Shanghai. I guess there's a limit to what you
can achieve locally. Considering moving there Dave?

Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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I had to check that it wasn't dated April 1st...

That's rather an odd press release... it kinda rambles without a lot of focus
at times.

Moving my R&D and management from Sydney to Shanghai isn't a gamble I'd want
to take with an EDA company!

"Altium Limited (ASX:ALU) creates electronics design software based on the
belief that anyone who wants to create electronic products that make a
difference should be able to do so." -- Of course, actually having a few
skills in electronic product design probably helps as well, one would think...

---Joel


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Tue, 5 Apr 2011 10:27:42 -0700, "Joel Koltner"

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My guess is that is because it's not a normal press release- it's an
ASX-required release of information they'd otherwise not be eager to
yap about.  

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Why not? I'd certainly not want to go in the other direction.

I have certain concerns about 'cloud' computing though, and having
their headquarters in Shanghai and servers (presumably) in the US is
probably the worst of all possible worlds that way.

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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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I'd consider it pretty high risk due to the vastly different cultures --  
especially since they'll presumably be losing almost all of their current
engineers and will have to find replacements in China; at best they're
essentially putting their current product "on hold" for a year or so while the
new Chinese replacements get up to speed with how the software is put
together.


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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Wait until you deal with outsourced support staff. Then the real fun
begins. BT, a lot :-(

--
Regards, Joerg

http://www.analogconsultants.com /

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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China

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I like the way the makers of Matlab handle support- not outsourced,
and nobody doing support has less than a Masters degree, with many
PhDs. Of course if you can get $100K for a piece of software, it's
easier.


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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I think Matlab has gotten so expensive that they're actually probably to the
right of the peak of the profits vs. price curve -- I know where I work here,
the price is high enough that while, yeah, we have a copy, we also spend a lot
of time with SciLab or other freebie alternatives... and I recently spoke to
an engineer at a large medical electronics manufacturer who said they do the
same thing.

Their network licensing price is also pretty severe... I forget the exact
numbers, but it was something like 1 network license was the price of
something like SIX individual licenses!  And they send out rather threatening
"clarifications," making it clear that if you're purchasing individual
licenses, it must be to *an individual* -- no sharing of a common PC, no
remote desktop, etc.  It definitely left a sour taste in our mouths...

I wouldn't be surprised if Matlab were eventually gobbled up by someone like
National Instruments.

---Joel


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Tue, 5 Apr 2011 12:46:30 -0700, "Joel Koltner"

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Yes, indeed, quite onerous.

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I wonder how much profit they would make if they priced their stuff
more like Solidworks does- just a few versions and you get pretty much
the whole shebang including stuff you'll don't need to use very often,
or at all. A $10K _adder_ just to emit IEC PLC code?  And didn't get
so acquisitive about floating licenses.


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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Tue, 5 Apr 2011 11:39:39 -0700, "Joel Koltner"

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They are in the process of doing a major release (10), so a bit of
delay until the next major release isn't going to be too bad. They may
have had the replacements working on it for six months already... just
because they announced it now doesn't mean that they are starting now.


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China

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I've used Altium a few years ago but I was under the impression the
major part was written in India. The user interface does not make any
sense. I already needed the manual to start a new design.

--
Failure does not prove something is impossible, failure simply
indicates you are not using the right tools...
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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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The problem with Altium Designer is that the people that develop it,
test it and ship it, have themselves never done any kind of real EDA -
Its obvious in the features they focus on that they have little grasp
of the problem space when compared to the offerings of their
competitors in the same price range.

I believe at this point Pulsonix would be the best path if people are
looking to upgrade or purchase new licenses. There is no guarantee
that Altium as a company will be around this time next year, so who
knows what will happen to multi-year subscriptions and promised
upgrade cycles.


Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Sun, 10 Apr 2011 13:43:26 -0700 (PDT), the renowned Rikard Astrof

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They appear to spend MUCH more time thinking about OOP and database
programming than electronic design.


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They appear to be moving away from true perpetual licenses, so even if
they are still around..


Best regards,
Spehro Pefhany
--
"it's the network..."                          "The Journey is the reward"
snipped-for-privacy@interlog.com             Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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One of the few companies where it seems that real circuit deigners work
on the CAD software is Cadsoft. In the forums it happens that someone
asks about a circuit problem and then ocasionally one of the Cadsoft
guys has the answer.


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Then they'd see major losses in the consultant's part of their customer
base. Those guys can usually only gradually glide into retirement and
the CAD has to keep working until Alzheimer's or something else strikes.
One would not be willing to pay full license fees every year in
semi-retirement. I would never agree to such a "deal".

--
Regards, Joerg

http://www.analogconsultants.com /

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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Sun, 10 Apr 2011 14:49:47 -0700, the renowned Joerg

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I was talking to their reps at a local trade show last Thursday... it
seems to be some kind of thing where the full original libraries are
held on their servers so you would be able to access the existing
components in your designs but not components you'd not used before
(unless you are up to date on the 'subscriptions' which are now quite
a substantial part of the 'purchase' price). I hope I misunderstood
and it's not that way. That means that they can hold for ransom all
the cost of learning their system (and let's face it, all EDA program
suites are quirky and have a fairly steep learning curve). Orcad is
not looking so bad.


Best regards,
Spehro Pefhany
--
"it's the network..."                          "The Journey is the reward"
snipped-for-privacy@interlog.com             Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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If they do that then I'd wager that this would be their end. A slow one
maybe, but I can't imagine people putting up with that. Just picture
this: You sit on an 11h flight to Asia, want to do some design work and
you can't because you can't access their servers from up there. What
were they smoking?


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I am using it right now. Can't say that I like it. It ain't what it used
to be in the SDT days.

--
Regards, Joerg

http://www.analogconsultants.com /

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Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
On Sun, 10 Apr 2011 19:56:23 -0400, Spehro Pefhany

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...and I thought Cadence/OrCAD was bad.

Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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"The Journey is the reward"
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If they are going to do things like this, that rules out our company
going with them. Have
been burnt before by people closing down or changing policy or
direction, and this sort of thing
leaving people high and dry.

Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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I think it may be a bit premature to tell.   I'm not connected with
Altium at all.  They are running a loss, but mostly because of the way
they book their revenue, $13M in deferred revenue, typically from
yearly licenses pre-purchased (and $4M in cash).   They may have
trouble finding local talent, I've been there before and see 1) a
strategy to lower cost 2) connect with a faster growing country.
Obviously competitors will start to create FUD like the postings here
that they wont be around.  I doubt that will happen.  Worse case, they
get bought.  I see no indication that product development is slowing
or will slow.  Heck they just were explaining on Chalk Talk how their
new capabilities help integrate IP into the process.  And their view
is a 'system view' which is steadily being understood.  Just my
opinion.

Cheers!
Rich

Re: Altium (Protel) Moves Global HQ to China
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This doesn't look too good:

http://www.asx.com.au/asx/research/companyInfo.do?by=asxCode&asxCode=ALU

AFAIK the stock was around AU$5 a decade ago.

--
Regards, Joerg

http://www.analogconsultants.com /

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