About two weeks ago, I participated in a workshop for “out-of-the-box” thinking. The exercise included painting a beach scene. While I stressed about getting paint on the canvas, everyone around me was expressing their inner Picasso. Following the exercise, I found myself in a discussion as to what I enjoy doing to relax. The answer came quickly. Puzzles! I find 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles relaxing. Why? And more to the point, what does any of this have to do with software monetization?
I recently joined SafeNet to lead the Product Marketing for the Software Monetization business unit. Many years prior to joining the SM unit, at the beginning of my career in hi tech, I worked on a product called the iPhone – yes, the iPhone. It wasn’t the iPhone of today but it was branded the iPhone and it was just as cool as Apple’s iPhone. I guess you can even say it was a pre-cursor to the iPhone of today; the InfoGear iPhone was a regular desktop telephone jazzed up with a touch screen, keyboard and happened to connect to the internet with the touch of a button. Pretty novel in those days.
Every so often, an opportunity presents itself that changes the software monetization industry for the better. Before the evolution of cloud, the move from on-premise hardware licensing methods to software licensing changed the way many ISV’s do business today. Brace yourselves, because the Internet of Things is poised to flip the software monetization market yet again.
Today begins one of software monetization’s most prestigious events, LicensingLive 2014!. Held in Cupertino, California, LicensingLive 2014! will feature several industry leaders including Amy Konary, Rhianna Collier, Ray Wang and Jeff Kaplan, discussing the opportunities that exist in the software licensing space.
The embedded market is currently in a state of change. In the past, embedded system vendors sold systems based on a hardware sales approach with a simple one time sale for the product. IP protection was seldom required as the systems were hard to copy and hack. Today, the various functionalities in embedded systems are more and more realized in software. There are many reasons for this movement toward software driven features which result in reduced time to market, production outsourcing, dealing with the lack of engineering resources, handling connected devices, preparing for the Internet of Things ( IoT) to name just a few.
The planning process of delivering software is a continuous process – develop, license, deploy and support, and back again. All stages striving to deliver a product that is what the customer wants while providing profit to the service provider.
As part of my family’s annual exercise, I’ve spent the last couple of weekends doing some spring cleaning. As I remove loads and loads of accumulated junk at home, I cannot but wish I had stayed lean and had to manage less. This is a sentiment I’m sure most IT managers echo when they look at their portfolio. Cloud and subscription however, are changing that. Let us examine the effects of going to cloud licensing in the context of spring cleaning: staying lean, nimble and flexible.
SafeNet Inc. announced on Tuesday an enhanced version of its signature Sentinel LDK product. Sentinel LDK is a software monetization solution that provides hardware-, software-, and cloud-based license delivery, intellectual property (IP) protection, and license management from a single, cloud-based platform. Sentinel LDK gives vendors the flexibility to meet the specific licensing demands of each of their customer groups regardless of their preferred delivery model.
A few years back, I found myself with a few colleagues in a bar in Amsterdam having a conversation around the merits of online consumption of music. We were converging to a common view point as to why anyone would want to pay 99 cents for downloading a single song when you could buy the entire DVD in any retail store complete with jewel box and lyrics for $10-15. Besides, you can always upload songs from CD to the electronic devices; this sounded like the better option to us, a win-win. Proud of our intelligent conclusion over a beer, we were soon up for a rude awakening when the person sitting next to us declared that we are nothing but a bunch of old fellas who don’t know what is going on in the new world.
When implementing business solutions using commercial or third-party solutions, what’s the best software delivery option? Should you look for a solution managed by the application provider? Or do you buy a license and implement it in-house, using your own staff to implement, install, and manage the solution? Of course, the answer is “it depends”. In order to determine what would work best for you, the first step is assessing the options against your priorities as a business. Here are some considerations: