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5 Cases for Keeping Your AutoCAD Up-to-Date

Enterprise Software | Posted on April 10, 2017 by Arun Kirupananthan

Working without the latest tools of the trade puts you at a disadvantage in any profession.

Missing the latest features means your employees aren’t as well-equipped as they could be.

For design professionals, Autodesk BIM and CAD software are often must-have items in the toolbox. Keeping up-to-date with your AutoCAD license has always made good business sense.

Last year, Autodesk shifted away from the perpetual license model to a subscription-based offering. The subscription grants access to the same full software versions as the license model while ensuring access to the latest versions and feature enhancements.

AutoCAD 2018 lets you create more precise drawings faster than ever before. This latest version adds features such as quick PDF conversion, combined text and Mtext objects, and freer off-screen navigation. AutoCAD 2018 also enables easier personalization and migration of files and custom settings than previous versions.

If you have a perpetual license in place, you’ll continue to be able to renew it and receive updates. But, there are very good reasons for getting on board with a subscription and AutoCAD 2018.

1. Make Your Investment Flexible 

A software license that continues in perpetuity is a big commitment.

Subscription offers much greater flexibility in terms of access, supporting the needs of teams and individuals, and term lengths. You’re no longer paying for perennial rights to use a specific software version. Nor do you need to wait for major releases to upgrade because the latest feature enhancements become available as they are released.

Single and multi-user access options let you tailor your package to allow sharing when needed. At the same time, subscribers may choose from month, quarter, yearlong, and multi-year terms and can cancel anytime. This allows your commitment to AutoCAD to change as your project streams ebb and flow.

2. Stay Current, Stay Compatible 

Design, engineering, architecture, and project management work often requires a high degree of interoperability. This includes frequent file sharing with internal groups or different organizations also using AutoCAD and other tools. Collaborating is difficult when dealing with different file types. Ensuring you work with the latest version mitigates frustrating file compatibility issues. Meanwhile, the latest version of AutoCAD 2018 includes tools to repair broken paths associated with external files. It also offers significant PDF enhancements, like SHX text recognition, thumbnail previews, and improved scaling of PDF geometry from layouts.

3. Keep Up to Speed with Less Disruption

Users will always need time to ramp up on a new software version. Impending deadlines sometimes mean taking that time seems like an unacceptable risk. In other cases, users are often resistant to the idea of re-training on a tool that’s already delivering the needed functionality. Staying current means a shorter ramp-up time on new features. The new subscription model also provides previous version rights. This allows you to have several versions of AutoCAD installed at once. This frees users to learn new features without affecting ongoing projects.

4. Get on Board at a Lower Cost 

For many organizations, software licenses are a significant investment. Subscriptions make sense for companies that need to stay current and have the flexibility to ramp up and down.

For some businesses, staying current with AutoCAD versions has been cost prohibitive. The Autodesk subscription offers a pay-as-you-go business model. Scalable license terms mean the latest features are available without a heavy upfront investment. Autodesk predicts the average customer will break even after 24 months, faster than with a perpetual license with maintenance costs.

5. AutoCAD 2018 and Beyond 

Automatic incremental updates and flexible licensing make the subscription model the best way to stay current. Making the switch makes sense for companies experimenting with AutoCAD and those who have built their workflows around it.

AutoCAD 2018 offers new features, including PDF enhancements, customization via the AutoCAD App Store, and the AutoCAD mobile app. It also provides the greatest degree of compatibility with previous versions and external file types of any AutoCAD product. Now, AutoCAD customers trading in their existing licenses will get 30% off the price of a three-year subscription to AutoCAD 2018.

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