I Have An Earlier Version. Why Do I Need To Pay For Verison 7.7?
Solution: Since we first released our birding program in 1994 we have worked very hard to continue improving it and adding new features requested by our users. We have also spent an enormous amount of time and money to make our software work on the new computers and operating systems that have been developed by Microsoft and Apple over the years.
There have been ten major releases in the past eighteen years.
Version 1.0 - Dec 1994
Version 2.0 - Dec 1996
Version 2.5 - Dec 1998
Version 3.0 - Dec 2001
Version 3.5 - Apr 2006
Version 3.9 - Jul 2007
Version 5.0 - Dec 2008 (special "Gold edition" for Windows only)
Version 4.0 - May 2010
Version 4.5 - Feb 2012 (also released version 5.5 at same time)
Version 7.0 - Aug 2014
Version 3.9 came out just a little over a year after we released version 3.5. Many folks purchased version 3.5 in the fall of 2006, only to discover a few months later that their software, which ran fine on XP, would not run on Vista (released by Microsoft in January 2007.) The operating systems on which our software will run are listed on the box. Obviously we cannot guarantee that the software will run on operating systems yet to be invented!
Frankly, we have been upset with both Microsoft and Apple at times since their operating systems are often unable to run slightly older software. The massive changes in Vista forced us to completely rewrite the software from the ground up. This was an extremely time-consuming and expensive effort. The same sort of thing happened when Apple released Snow Leopard.
We continued to release improvements and “bug fixes” throughout the life of each major version. For example, version 3.9.0 had 12 free upgrades – some for Windows and some for Mac computers. ALL OF THESE WERE FREE OF CHARGE.
We have always offered our customers the opportunity to purchase newer versions at a discount if they wanted them. Many folks say they liked their current version – but they got a new computer and their old version would not run on the new computer. Of course, once they upgrade they loved all the new features!
Obviously all of these upgrades cost us money to create. Our programmers are based in the USA, not overseas, so our costs are higher than some. The minor upgrades we have created were given away at no cost. But major upgrades, usually forced upon us by violent changes in computer operating systems, are something we need to charge you for in order to stay in business. Creating Version 4 also involved major expenses when we paid the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for additional videos and detailed maps to include in the program. Unlike organizations like the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, we do not receive donations or grant money. When we released version 4.5, Birds of North America users got 53 new species and over 600 new images. State/Province users saw the species jump from 300 to 450-550 species and they also saw hundreds of new photos - primarily of bird's eggs and nests. There was no charge in moving from version 4.0 to version 4.5.
As a personal aside, I am always dumbfounded when I hear this question!
It is like asking why you cannot get a free car this year from the dealer who sold you your current car eight years ago. I own some great software programs like Photoshop, Windows and Family Tree Maker. I am always happy to pay for their latest version if I feel that I will benefit from the improvements they have made. We know that our software will run on all the operating systems listed on the box and we back it up with a money-back guarantee. For some reason, a few folks think that birding software should be different or that we should be able to see into the future and make our software run on operating systems that have not yet been created. I would love for that to be true! But alas that is not the way it works.
You can get the latest versions of our software at a reduced price. visit Thayer Birding Software - Update.