Software Africa Newsletter - October 2017

Editorial

Truly strange weather, rain dropping the temperatures. At least the rain is here in Gauteng! If only the Western Cape could get some too!

Autodesk

Pending Price Increase

Please note that Autodesk prices will increase by 6% on Friday 13th October. Please place your orders and pay before then!

Moving to Annual Subscription from Maintenance

We have clarification on the move from Maintenance subscriptions to Annual subscriptions. If you move on the promotions to Annual subscription, that subscription will stay at the same price for at least three years.  Whereas, the maintenance subscriptions will increase by 20% next February. Promotions and other special offers will continue for this year. I suspect they will continue through Financial 2019 as well.

In addition, do not think that buying Inventor Pro and AutoCAD, for example, will cost you less than buying a Design Collection. The wealth of software in the Design Collection  at around R36 000 inc VAT (at the current exchange rate) way undercuts buying any two standalone packages.

BIM options

BIM - Business Information Management, is growing its facilities for workers and associates to work together. This includes being in the field and doing basic designs or capturing client requirements. BIM solutions given tablet- and smartphone users the ability to do all of this plus check designs against the solution being built. The user can then raise flags on apparent errors etc.

Use this link to find out more about this stunning group of products.

Online Business Tip #12 - Google Chrome Bug with Trusteer Rapport

An increasing number of Google Chrome users have recently found that, when they click a link in an email to open it in their web browser, an extra tab opens headed "http://--disable-features=loadingwithmojo/" and the message:

This site canít be reached

--disable-features%3Dloadingwithmojoís server DNS address could not be found.

The problem arises from a conflict with Trusteer Rapport, the Nedbank banking security extension that warns of potential security breaches. Trusteer have advised that a fix is in the process of being rolled out and should have been completed by Saturday 30 September. If you are still finding the problem, check that you are running the latest version and make sure you have automatic updates enabled. The Nedbank logoff screen is supposed to allow you to install Rapport.  More details here.

QuickBooks 2017 Update

Annual subscriptions are the new norm. I know that this makes us all angry, because, to quote a customer, "I want to own not rent the software". Why has subscription become the new norm? Well, let's go there:

Piracy and out-of-date software upgrade costs

Since Lotus (remember them?) and Microsoft first sold us their solutions, piracy has been a huge problem. It has caused legal costs, lack of funding to meet customer requirements and lack of funding for real support. So, about 5 years ago, Adobe changed to an annual subscription model and marketed the benefits:

When Microsoft saw the results, it offered the Office 360 solutions. This enabled it to make users fully mobile as well as giving them Cloud Storage. Their experience mirrored Adobe's. We can still access long term desktop subscriptions. There is a drawback to this. When you upgrade to a new operating system, you have to buy new. That's expensive.

So the other advantage to the annual subscription model is that you stay current at a lower cost.

Customer uptake on this was good. Piracy dropped across the board, so Autodesk launched its solutions in Financial Year 2017. The Maintenance subscriptions continue but new software is on Annual or Quarterly subscription. There are regular promotions for existing users to change to the annual subscription.

Autodesk's experience has enabled it to offer high level support to all Quarterly and Annual subscribers. These subscribers now have full access to user group discussion and video tutorials as well.

So now, QuickBooks has gone the same route with the same commitment to raising the level of support and training. Development is also vital to you as their customer. In implementing this new model, development, to meet your needs, will happen far faster as well. For instance, EasyBIZ CONNECT for iPads and iPhones will be out by end October. This is part of the QuickPerks solutions. You will be able to access online chat to make suggestions and give feedback.

Your software will be always up to date and give you seamless access when you change your operating system to the latest.

Other new QuickBooks Developments

Because your customer experience has to be of the highest standard, resellers are to be certified. We, as resellers, have wanted this for some time. It means that we will be up to date as well! We will have to meet standards set by QuickBooks.  This promises you, as our customer, a reliable and nurturing relationship. Wait for more announcements in future newsletters!

  • Contact Judith for more information!

  • Quick Payroll

    Please contact Judith for the new KeyPlayer software and assistance in getting your data file to QuickBooks for conversion.

    Green Tip

    A cost-saving tip for once! Use white vinegar for washing and for stain removal. No need for expensive soap powder or fabric softeners when you utilise this solution. Details at this link.

    The World is changing rapidly

    All Autodesk products have similar links to training and resources. Here's the one for the Product and Factory Design Collection https://www.autodesk.com/collections/product-design-manufacturing/overview. Take a really in-depth look at what this solution gives you.

    Excel Tip #158 -- What's New in Excel 2016 for Windows? New Statistical Charts

    We are looking at what is new in Excel 2016 for Windows Desktop, compared with Excel 2010.  As we saw in Excel Tip #151 in February, on the Insert ribbon, in the Charts group, there are three new buttons: Hierarchy, Waterfall or Stock, and Statistical.  Click the latter.

    In this episode, we do an overview of the new Statistical charts. As we see in the drop-down list, these consist of Histogram charts and Box and Whisker type charts.

    Histogram charts: Data plotted in a histogram chart shows the frequencies within a distribution. Each column of the chart is called a "bin", which can be changed to further analyze your data. There are two sub-types of histogram charts, Plain Histogram and Pareto chart:

    1. The plain Histogram chart shows the distribution of your data grouped into frequency bins, not sorted (unless you did that beforehand).
    2. A Pareto is a sorted histogram chart that contains both columns sorted in descending order and a line representing the cumulative total percentage.

    A Box and Whisker chart shows distribution of data into quartiles, highlighting the mean and outliers. The boxes may have lines extending vertically called "whiskers". These lines indicate variability outside the upper and lower quartiles, and any point outside those lines or whiskers is considered an outlier. Use this chart type when there are multiple data sets which relate to each other in some way.  There are no chart sub-types for box and whisker charts.

    Next month we will look at Histogram charts in more detail.

    Computius Say:

    Computers are not intelligent. They only think they are.

    Remember:  We can make your business run better by:

    All the Best from the team!
    Judith and Rick

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