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What, in your opinion, should Atril change to make DejaVu X more attractive to customers?
Thread poster: Pavel Tsvetkov

Pavel Tsvetkov  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 00:53
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English to Bulgarian
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Jan 29, 2010

I would really like to see Atril get things right - they deserve to be the number one tool on the market: not only the best overall tool, but the most popular one.

Right now they are trailing behind SDL, and bearing in mind how buggy and mind boggling Trados is, this is a strange fact, to say the least.

What should they change?

1. They should bring prices down.
Even if their tool indeed is the cheapest one on the market in the long run, do not expect customers to shell out the money for a small car, feeling happy all along that things will eventually even out in 10 years or so.

2. Fix the issue with the limited number of TMs and TBs that can be used with the Pro version.
This is Atril's official postition regarding the issue now:

This decision was made based on what the majority of the Professional edition’s target users are expected to need. Your specific needs may, indeed, be different. Even so, since Déjà Vu X allows you to combine databases by importing one into another, you should be able to create the combinations of databases that you need to be able to have what you require when working with any particular project, even with the number of associated databases limited to two. - SDL and Kilgray have.

This is not helping. SDL and MemoQ have already introduced this feature, and so should you.

3. Imporve, vastly improve their Public Relations routine.
You cannot afford to impersonate the dead fox from the children's story if you are to remain in business. Look at how agressive SDL is, how consistent - Kilgray.

4. Change the way their website looks, and update it regularly.

5. Keep the good things from the current version in the new one, but also try to introduce interesting new features.

6. No more price-changes antics.
You cannot afford to offer a New Year discount, make people pay, then lower prices even more and make the new customers feel bad.

7. Plan ahead.
6 months before the release of your new version, and having offered yet another bizzare price-cut, Atril cannot decide what their verion, price and upgrade policy will be for the time to come, and this leaves their prospecive customers scratching their heads.

Atril seem to be excellent programmers and lousy businessmen, and the combination of these two is not to their advantage.

I am an SDL customer, but I would rather see Atril shine, they desreve to be No.1, but with the current level of customer communication and lack of strategic planning, that will simply not happen.


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QUOI  Identity Verified

Chinese to English
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DV X price and pricing Jan 29, 2010

Even at its usual full price, DV X Pro (EUR990) is not an expensive investment for a serious production tool. For a full time translator/one person business who pulls in, for example, EUR50K a year doing translation, this is a very low outlay. Any business needs initial investment. At least, buying DVX won't require you to take out a mortgage. So I don't think its price is an issue.

As for their pricing strategy, well...enough said in the other thread.

[Edited at 2010-01-29 09:31 GMT]


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Javier Arrizabalaga
Local time: 23:53
Thanks for your suggestions Jan 29, 2010

Thank you very much for your suggestions. I will send them to the sales and commercial staff. I think they have thought on all these aspects for the new version (we received many opinions in this way during the last year) but we mostly appreciate your point of view.

With regards,


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Jabberwock  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:53
Member (2004)
English to Polish
Impressions of a would-be buyer Jan 29, 2010

When I have decided that (old) Trados as much hinders my efficiency as improves it, I had a look at alternatives. My tests indicated that as far as work capacity is concerned, DVX is clearly superior. However, I have decided to buy MemoQ.

I see purchase of a CAT tool as a long-term investment. I do not mean just money - this is recovered pretty quickly. But I have to invest long hours to master the tool, learn every bit of its interface, customize it to my needs and adapt it to my workflow.

Unfortunately, Atril does very little to assure me that it is here to stay. When I learned about it, it was regularly patched and updated... It does not seem so any more - the latest official patch 316 has been released almost two years after 303. The fact that in the meantime select few had access to beta builds which supposedly improved on some issues of 303 did not instill my confidence either (why weren't the improvements made official?).

Also, the announcement of the version 8 (vague as it is) is to be taken with a ton of salt. There were several such announcements in the past, which did little but agitate the loyal fanbase (I remember a post from beginning of 2009 where a user complained that version 8 is long overdue!).

The support is barely visible - you can get excellent help, but it comes from your fellow users...

I wish Atril and Deja Vu all the best - it is really an excellent tool and deserves every praise it gets. However, as the saying goes, if you stay in place you fall behind...

[Edited at 2010-01-29 11:01 GMT]


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Claudio Porcellana  Identity Verified
Italy
DejaVu X more attractive to customers? Jan 29, 2010

to me 1 simple thing only:
give to users the option to have the classic UP/DOWN layout as in MS Word + Workbench, instead or in addition to the RIGHT/LEFT layout of SDLX, DejaVu, last SDL Trados tools and many others

I don't think that a simple Radio button can be so a hard job for CAT tools programmers, and yet no one CAT tool programmer has implemented it so far!

Claudio


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Pavel Tsvetkov  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 00:53
Member (2008)
English to Bulgarian
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TOPIC STARTER
Some additional thoughts Jan 29, 2010

words@large wrote:

Even at its usual full price, DV X Pro (EUR990) is not an expensive investment for a serious production tool. For a full time translator/one person business who pulls in, for example, EUR50K a year doing translation, this is a very low outlay.


Yes, but your calculations seem to be based on other parts of the world, not Eastern Europe. "EUR50K a year" is a far cry from what we make.

SDL may take a lot of blame for the quality of the software they sell (mostly beta versions trying to pass for the real deal), but they should be praised for their smart marketing policy - in Bulgaria Trados is sold for a fraction of the price of the same product in Western Europe.

If Atril is interested in having customers in this part of the world, they should lower their prices accordingly.

Food for thought: I have to buy computers, office space, software, etc. at the same prices as all other Europeans, and make times less - how is my business supposed to stay afloat?

Jabberwock wrote:

When I have decided that (old) Trados as much hinders my efficiency as improves it, I had a look at alternatives. My tests indicated that as far as work capacity is concerned, DVX is clearly superior. However, I have decided to buy MemoQ.

...

Unfortunately, Atril does very little to assure me that it is here to stay. When I learned about it, it was regularly patched and updated...

...

Also, the announcement of the version 8 (vague as it is) is to be taken with a ton of salt. There were several such announcements in the past, which did little but agitate the loyal fanbase

...

I wish Atril and Deja Vu all the best - it is really an excellent tool and deserves every praise it gets. However, as the saying goes, if you stay in place you fall behind...


Seconded. Kilgray are doing a better job of convincing customers that they should be buying their product.

No predictability = no business success, sad as it may be.


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:53
Member (2003)
German to English
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On the mark Jan 29, 2010

Jabberwock wrote:
... as the saying goes, if you stay in place you fall behind...


I agree with every word you wrote. In many individual tasks, DVX is clearly still the best. However, many modern features are lacking, and the communication for years has created nothing but uncertainty in the user base. The PowerLing debacle has only made things worse. I would welcome bold moves and improvements, because DVX has bee a hugely important part of my business for years, but my business has to move forward into the future. With memoQ or any other tool(s) that meet my needs for features, stability and support.


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:53
Member (2003)
German to English
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Not on the backs of the software creators Jan 29, 2010

Pavel Tsvetkov wrote:
Food for thought: I have to buy computers, office space, software, etc. at the same prices as all other Europeans, and make times less - how is my business supposed to stay afloat?


Development companies who are supposed to stick around have considerable costs too. It's up to each person to work out a viable business model and market well enough to survive. Play the USP harp as well as you can.

What about this Java-based Polish TEnT? CafeTrans? The description sounds pretty good, and it seems cheap enough to call it Shareware almost. For the long term I personally feel safer with companies who have enough critical mass and brains to survive. Not all vendors fit that definition.


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Javier Arrizabalaga
Local time: 23:53
Free technical support Jan 29, 2010

Jabberwock wrote:

The support is barely visible - you can get excellent help, but it comes from your fellow users...



We offer free technical support on support@atril.com, and not only for people who has bought DVX but also for people who evaluates it.


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David Turner  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:53
French to English
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Not quite via a radio button... Jan 29, 2010

Claudio Porcellana wrote:
to me 1 simple thing only:
give to users the option to have the classic UP/DOWN layout as in MS Word + Workbench, instead or in addition to the RIGHT/LEFT layout of SDLX, DejaVu, last SDL Trados tools and many others

I don't think that a simple Radio button can be so a hard job for CAT tools programmers, and yet no one CAT tool programmer has implemented it so far!
Claudio


... (but then you'd hardly want to chop and change this setting would you?), but this can be achieved by Tools/Options/General and checking "Edit in a separate text area" and "Split text area vertically".


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David Turner  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:53
French to English
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I'd say your point 1 doesn't square with your point 6. Jan 29, 2010

Pavel Tsvetkov wrote:
1. They should bring prices down.

6. No more price-changes antics.
You cannot afford to offer a New Year discount, make people pay, then lower prices even more and make the new customers feel bad.


Let's say Atril follow your advice and cut prices by a further 20% so as to bring the price of DVX Pro down from 660 to 500 say. If the logic of your point 6 holds true, wouldn't all those who just bought at 660 then feel discruntled, not to mention those who bought at the Christmas discount price?
Honestly, you can't win. You reduce prices and people still complain.


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Claudio Porcellana  Identity Verified
Italy
Split text area vertically Jan 29, 2010

Hi David

not sure it is what I like

I love Tageditor or MS Word + Workbench that show the Source ON TOP and the Target BELOW the Source window

I hate SDLX and similar that show the Source on the left and the Target on the right

but only ONE TU a time, do you follow me?

it should be useless to me, to have "ten Source TUs" in a window ON TOP and "ten Target TUs" in another window BELOW the Source window

a picture is better than thousand words, but it's impossible post a screen-shoot here

Claudio

[Modificato alle 2010-01-29 15:00 GMT]


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:53
Member (2003)
German to English
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Here's a screenshot or two Jan 29, 2010

Claudio Porcellana wrote:
it should be useless to me, to have "ten Source TUs" in a window ON TOP and "ten Target TUs" in another window BELOW the Source window

a picture is better than thousand words, but it's impossible post a screen-shoot here


What Dave is talking about IS one TU at a time. But it's the Environment tab, not the General tab. Two relevant screenshots will be found here.

This has one TU with the source on top, the target on the bottom and the rest side-by-side for a better overview for editing. The best of both worlds, really.

[Edited at 2010-01-29 15:47 GMT]


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Javier Arrizabalaga
Local time: 23:53
DVX Screenshots Jan 29, 2010

KSL Berlin wrote:

...
a picture is better than thousand words, but it's impossible post a screen-shoot here


Thanks!! I also sent him by mail an screenshot with the project view.


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Olaf Reibedanz  Identity Verified
Colombia
Local time: 17:53
Member (2003)
English to German
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Atril’s pricing policy Jan 29, 2010

I fully agree with Pavel on all points. And I would like to add some thoughts about Atril’s pricing policy:

I think Atril took a good decision to lower the price of their products, but these price cuts should even go further (perhaps 500 EUR for Déjà Vu Professional and 200 EUR for Déjà Vu Standard); they should include the Workgroup version; they should be accompanied by a clear statement as to the company’s overall pricing policy; and they would be a great opportunity for revising that pricing policy.

In particular, I am referring to the fact that Atril should start charging an annual fee for updates and support. Almost all software developing companies do charge such a fee, and there is nothing wrong with them at all. On the contrary, as a user I would be very happy paying Atril 50 or 100 EUR per year if that money is invested in further improving the product, thus enhancing my productivity and my earnings.

As things are now, Atril can only generate new revenues by gaining new customers, whereas other CAT tool providers receive a constant flow of income from their existing user base. I wonder if this generous pricing policy on the part of Atril has contributed to a lack of funds and is thus one of the reasons why Déjà Vu has not been making any significant progress over the last 5 years, whereas the competitors are catching up quickly. In fact, when I started using Déjà Vu in 2003, the programme was light-years ahead of the competition, but now many other good products are very close on their heels, with a much more efficient marketing and communication strategy, and with a much faster support.

Déjà Vu is still my preferred CAT tool, but Atril must really get into gear if they don’t want to lose their technological edge in this competitive and rapidly evolving market.

Best,

Olaf


[Edited at 2010-01-29 17:08 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-01-29 17:48 GMT]


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