Dear Adobe,

Maybe I am missing some subtlety here, but it looks like your upgrade pricing for the recently-announced Creative Suite 3 is tad thick-headed. To whit, the following incomprehensible stipulation buried in your already mind-bogglingly complicated product packaging and upgrade licensing terms:

"Upgrade pricing is available only for products listed above and requires a qualifying previous product on the same platform, with serial number."

What I want to do is upgrade from Macromedia Studio (on Windows) to Adobe CS3 Web Premium (on Mac). It seems like this should cost me $499, which would make the upgrade a no-brainer. But because of your "same platform" restriction, it looks like you instead want to charge me $1,500 for a whole new license. It’s the same software, I just want to run it on a different operating system.

You know I love you crazy kids, but you’re basically imposing a $1,000 per user tax on each of your customers who want to switch to Mac from Windows. What business purpose could that possibly solve? (Hint: It’s not "to make more money," since I’m not shelling out $1,500 for a brand new license for this software.)



Update: James posted in comments that Adobe will do a "cross-upgrade" if you call their 800 number and place the order that way. I just completed this, and it was a colossal pain in the butt. Some of their customer service people know how to do this, others don’t. One Adobe customer service guy I talked to actually tried to get me to send the box of software on my desk back to Adobe so he could send me something else that would work. When I objected, he said "I get a little tired of people saying it’s my fault". Sorry, dude: if your salesperson says that the software upgrade costs $XXX and I pay for it and you ship it to me and it doesn’t install, it is indeed your problem. It’s certainly not my problem.

What I really needed was a non-bozonic customer service person who could just give me an upgrade serial number so the software I’d already installed on my Mac would work. I called back later in the morning and was transferred back and forth between sales and customer service and disconnected several times before I got someone who could help me — even then, the total call time including waiting on hold was 45 minutes.

If you need to do this, be prepared to give them your Adobe customer ID number and every serial number of every Macromedia product you’ve ever owned so they can verify that you’re not an evil software pirate. Also make sure, if you’re calling on a cel phone, that your phone’s battery is charged all the way, or better yet, plugged into its charger — running out of cel phone juice is how I got disconnected on my first call. At the beginning of each call they take your phone number so they can hypothetically call you back if there’s a disconnect, but after three or four disconnects I never got a call back from any of the Adobe people I talked to.

My issue is now resolved, though, and I’m busy plugging away with CS3 on my Mac now.