Looking for a hot, late-summer deal? Forget off-season vacation destinations or even any of those low-priced, cash-for-clunker car deals advertised ad nauseam. What about a great deal on a 3-D CAD package? Alibre, an upstart to the CAD market and a provider of relatively low-cost software to start with, for a limited time is offering a full-blown version of its 3-D design package for $99.
Sound too good to be true. Alibre says it’s the real deal. There are no restrictions on the software provided under this special promotion and it’s a full version of Alibre Design that someone buys and can own forever, according to Alibre CEO Paul Grayson. Typically, the software sells for $999, a relative bargain compared with most CAD offerings, which go for upwards of $5,000.
Alibre is hoping the lure of low pricing will jumpstart its sales, which apparently are lagging along with the rest of the CAD market. Unlike other special deals from competitors–SolidWorks’ Engineering Stimulus package, which offers a limited-term trial version of the SolidWorks Student Design Kit, and the Autodesk Assistance Program, which offers student licenses, the Alibre deal is not a short term offer nor is it a crippled version of the program, Grayson says.
Here’s how Grayson pitched it: “Tens of thousands of people are in the same boat right now–they need CAD software, but can’t afford multi-thousand dollar software in this economy,” he explains. “Many companies have canceled or suspended purchases of new CAD seats to preserve their bottom lines. Manufacturing companies have been hit especially hard and thousands of talented engineers are out of work. Whatever the case, long story short is that people are not buying new seats of $5,000-plus CAD software. … Getting a full license for $99 completely changes the game for these people and completely changes the game for CAD vendors.”
A game-changer, who knows. But as a summer bargain, it’s definitely worth a look.