Articulate 360

I am confused by this new Articulate 360 and what it means for Articulate Storyline. Does this mean that no further development will occur on Articulate Storyline 2, standalone version? Will there ever be an Articulate Storyline 3? What about people who bought a platinum licence with an upgrade option who do not want to go to Articulate 360? Will they get a refund on the upgrade portion or will they be forced to go to 360 if they want to benefit from their upgrade purchase?

While I see that there is benefit, especially for new customers, to 360, I am still not sure that it is worth mine and my company's money to take a perpetual licence and change it to a subscription for what I perceive to only be minor feature enhancements.

I am open to be shown why the expense would be worth my while?

281 Replies
Mark Shepherd

That's true, we've seen a number of interesting ideas and suggestions for progress bar development and usage within Storyline 2 in the community to date.

Agreed in your hope that one day we will see a number of different progress style indicators as built in elements usable within Storyline, much like the Dials feature was added to 360, perhaps.

Will Findlay

One thing that would make progress bars much easier to build would be if there were some hard-wired variables in Storyline that were self-referencing. For example things like "CurrentSlideinCurrentScene", "TotalSlidesinCurrentScene", "TitleOfCurrentSlide", "NumberOfCurrentScene" and so on. So hopefully they will build that kind of thing into Storyline 3.

Mark Schwartz
Mark Shepherd

Other than having unlimited storage (vs. 150 GBs, which is hardly a tiny amount), I'd say Articulate still needs to convince me of the value of using Teams vs. Individual Licensing. 

HI Mark,

Here is a link to the Teams page which describes some of the Teams features: https://articulate.com/360/teams. Allow me to provide some additional color based on several of our new 360 Teams customers feedback to me and where they see value:

  • Seat management - company assigned administrators will be able to allocate seats on a dynamic (as needed) basis.  So let's assume you have a team of 30, but at any given time, only 20 people will be actively authoring courses.  Buy a Teams subscription for 20 seats.   The admin(s) can rotate seats by adding/removing users via email.  This provides mich greater value utilization of the services.  And with simple to use tools like Rise, Studio 360, Preso, and Peek (which used with Review is already changing how we do business internally) the potential user base of SMEs and knowledge workers greatly expands.  Those infrequent authors might not be able to justify an individual plan, but as a Teams user, this becomes a very practical option. 
  • Billing/budgeting - orgs like the ability to plan for and pay a single annual invoice for all Teams seats. This reduces their administrative burden. And if new Teams seats are added during the year to an active Teams subscription, that seat is invoiced on a co-terminus basis, to reflect for the remaining term in the Teams subscription.  
  • Flexibility - if someone leaves the org or company, that seat can be removed and assigned to someone else.  Further, if supplemental or contractor resources are needed, the admin can grant temporary access to the Teams subscription during that period. 

Please contact our success team at success@articulate.com or your local reseller if we can further help you decide if Articulate 360 Teams is right for you. 

Tiffani Nye

I'm with others who are disappointed that there is not a perpetual option right now. I work for a small department in a small company, and while we did budget for the price of an upgrade to SL3, planning to spend thousands of dollars every year to subscribe when we only use one piece of the software is just not feasible. 

At the same time, we want to keep up with current trends. We need to start offering mobile course options to our learners as soon as possible and were looking forward to the useful tools in the new SL update. Now you're saying we're going to have to wait until "sometime in 2017". This pricing model and the wait to upgrade when we've been testing out SL3 for months may result in Articulate losing our business. :-/ 

I understand where you're trying to go with the subscription model, and if we used the other programs it might be worth it. However, it feels as if in your haste to push the subscription model you've left behind a lot of loyal customers. 

Will Findlay

I currently use both Storyline 2  and Studio' 13 and I think that people in a similar role to me, but who don't use Studio '13 currently, will find that the addition of Studio 360 is a valuable tool. When someone just wants a "narrated PowerPoint" I think it is much faster to create it in Studio '13, in big part because of the bulk import of audio clips you can do, and because it runs inside ppt. I also like how it provides an overall timer for the entire presentation, and how it has the presenter panel where you can add someone's photo and bio. Then again, some people may not ever be called on to create simple narrated PowerPoints like this, but for me it saves a lot of time when the final product is a linear presentation and quiz.

Sometimes I actually use both - starting in Presenter to get the audio added to slides, and the quizzes created in Quizmaker, and then I import it all into Storyline where I can customize it more.

Will Findlay

One question I have about Storyline 360 and Storyline 3. Will Storyline 360 be able to save in a file format that can be read by Storyline 3? And further down the line, will it be able to save in a format readable by Storyline 4, and so on? If the answer is yes, I would feel more comfortable buying into a subscription model. I think the hesitation I feel now is creating content that can only be maintained if I commit to an annual fee with no possible end in sight.

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Will,

In general, we'd like to avoid breaking changes between Storyline 360 and the next perpetual version of Storyline, but it happens.  Like, if we introduce a new dial style in version X, you'll need to use at least version X to edit and publish that dial style. So, if you're still on version W, you might see a message like, "this project includes a dial style that requires version X. Please upgrade to version X."  Our plan is to try and limit this though and keep it isolated to projects actually using new features.

When we release the next perpetual version of Storyline next year, it will not be the same application as Storyline 360.  Most notably, it will not include integration with the web apps in Articulate 360 such as Content Library and Articulate Review.

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Christian,

Are you referring to updates that we've done to each individual perpetual version to resolve issues and add in elements such as those documented in the release notes here for Storyline 2?  We'll continue to provide the same support we have in the past and continue to provide updates to fix issues. There isn't a schedule for those type of updates, so I can't say how often or how many would be involved, but if you look at the Storyline 2 release notes you'll see we did 11 updates, 4 of which were in the last 6 months alone.

Cheryl Hoover

If by chance someone is counting votes, please add mine. It is logical to make Storyline 360 the next version of Storyline 2, the exact version offered in the package. There's no other customer-oriented approach to take. No other company out there makes two versions of the same software. Thank you for listening.

Christian Schade

Hi Ashley,

 

I'm not meaning the updates of SL2 for bugfixing and so one. I'm interested in that what I have descirbed in another post:

 

"I have just ordered a new SL2 offer with the PMP2 upgrade pack (SL3 and SL4) here at our internal purchase at Olympus Europe. And surprise, surprise the PMP2 is not on the list anymore. I heard the same thing from a colleague of an affiliated company, that they won't be able to puchase a PMP 1 or 2 licence. Also the reseller Interlake in Germany is not going to offer any PMP licence right now. 

So there really is an urgent matter that some of your staff should ensure what will happen to the standalone Storyline, it's updates(to SL3 and SL4) and furthermore the compatibility between 360 and SL2 or when happens 3. 

And PLEASE just don't tell us that it will happen somewhen in 2017. We also need a detailed feature list which features of 360 will be implemented in the coming versions of SL3. Then we could make further decisions here at our companys.  

(Maybe decisions about what will happen with the PMP2 licences I have bought this year)" 

And further more. It is exactly that what was mentioned by Cheryl Hoover. Nobody is selling two similar products on different plattforms (Stand alone or cloud based). I'm not even sure if you have tha capacity to invest the ressources even in both 360 and SL2. And as this new payment design is bringing you more money, I'm really afraid that you cut off SL3 and SL4 in the future! That is how it looks like and that is the problem!

BR Christian

Christoph Krieger

I guess it will be the same approach as Microsoft Office.

Subscription user get more features or at least much earlier but basically the software is the same.

They will bring SL3 and SL4 with less features than the subscription software just to fullfill the PMP license and more or less force the user to switch to subscription.

After this period the standalone version will disapear.

Also I guess Version 4 will come earlier as the "normal" Articulate development cycle.

I would bet any money.

Mark Schwartz
Cheryl Hoover

If by chance someone is counting votes, please add mine. It is logical to make Storyline 360 the next version of Storyline 2, the exact version offered in the package. There's no other customer-oriented approach to take. No other company out there makes two versions of the same software. Thank you for listening.

Hi Cheryl and others.  While you still not might like our approach regarding Storyline 360 and perpetual Storyline products, I just want to point out that when you say "no other company out there makes two versions of the same software" - I would point out that there a couple of companies that come to mind that do just that - Microsoft Office (Office 365 or Office 2016) and products within the Adobe creative suite (i.e. Lightroom Creative Cloud or Lightroom 6).  I'm sure there are numerous other examples, but these two companies came to mind.  And they do not keep their products at feature parity.  Subscription products are frequently updated; perpetual updates are packaged in new paid upgrade versions.  

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Christian,

Thanks for letting me know you had another discussion going, and I found it here.  Although you can no longer purchase PMP with the perpetual licenses the existing PMP set up you have is still valid and you'll be able to continue to utilize it as you have done in the past. The specifics of that are something I'd invite you to discuss with our Customer care team about how you'd go about upgrading to the next perpetual version with it - it's well beyond my area of expertise in the forums of support!

When we release the next perpetual version of Storyline next year, it will not be the same application as Storyline 360.  Most notably, it will not include integration with the web apps in Articulate 360 such as Content Library and Articulate Review.

In general, we'd like to avoid breaking changes between Storyline 360 and the next perpetual version of Storyline, but it happens.  Like, if we introduce a new dial style in version X, you'll need to use at least version X to edit and publish that dial style. So, if you're still on version W, you might see a message like, "this project includes a dial style that requires version X. Please upgrade to version X."  Our plan is to try and limit this though and keep it isolated to projects actually using new features.

I hope that helps clarify some of your additional questions. 

Will Findlay

My apprehension is that Articulate is moving to a subscription model but the 360 tools don't offer backwards compatibility features that you sometimes see in other software that are on subscription models.

For example, I would feel more comfortable if Storyline 360 offered a "Save as SL2" option. I'm thinking of a scenario where one year, the subscription cost for Articulate 360 doesn't get approved and I need to switch back to SL2 for example. I recognize that  functions inherent to 360 files would no longer work in the downgraded file, but I could live with that because I would at least be able to salvage the revisions made to the content over the years. Maybe it could do what Microsoft products do and warn the user that certain things won't work in the earlier format (via a similar Compatibility Checker)? I would be fine with that. I just worry putting making my content more "expirable." I do realize that because operating systems and browsers change over the years that upgrading is inevitable anyway, but there is a difference between upgrading every year, and upgrading every two or three years.

Jake Hurt

The main fear is that moving to this would involve us putting all our courses into 360. If we then unsubscribed because (let's say hypothetically) Articulate were to drive the price up even further, we would lose ALL our content.

As it stands, we still have a lot of 09 content, which we can still work with because we still own 09, and don't need to pay some extra money to keep using it.

For a lot of our older content we simply don't have the time to upgrade to newer versions, so keeping 09 is fine.

Roll on SL3 I say. I'm sure Articulate will change their tune once a few months of not many subscribers kicks in.

Mark Schwartz
Jake Hurt

Copying what other companies do doesn't necessarily make it right, or a good idea.

Given the tremendous backlash and outrage 360 has caused, it might be worth reconsidering certain decisions.

Jake, my intent in pointing out the other companies was not to seek an endorsement of what we're doing, but rather to show several folks who claim no other companies do this - that in fact, this is what many companies do.   You and others on this thread have shared your candid feedback which is appreciated.  We value our passionate user base and will always try to improve based on your thoughtful input.  

Several members of the Articulate team (including myself) have just shared Articulate 360 with over 3000 attendees at DevLearn (an E-Learning Guild conference).   The feedback we received from conference attendees when we demoed the products was overwhelmingly positive and inspiring.  Rise and Review were considered game changers.   The ability to publish legacy SL1, SL2, Studio 09, and Studio '13 content with Storyline 360 and Studio 360 respectively, to make those legacy courses multi-device ready with our new HTML5 responsive player was universally praised.   Pricing was also discussed.  The tremendous backlash and outrage was notably absent at DevLearn from new prospects and existing customers alike. 

Jake Hurt

I'm not doubting the quality of the product, just the pricing and the manner it has been rolled out.

In my experience, pricing is rarely looked into that seriously at conferences, the key part there is the products themselves. Articulate always gets a great reception because of the quality of its products. The backlash may have been absent there, but it isn't here.

Whether or not a product is worth the price is irrelevant. It is whether it is a viable price.

I would love an Aston Martin, but unfortunately I can't afford one ;)

I'm trying not to start an argument here, though I know my comments might seem to not reflect that.

Fraser M

Agreed Jake.  It's not just the separate product and possible compatibility issues, it's the price.

I have 1 client with 1 module that has been pushing for the mobile player for about a year and wants it asap. He doesn't want to wait another year for SL3, but I don't feel I could subscribe to 360 for this 1 module and then have to pay very high subscription fees from now to eternity to be able to support it. Articulate has me in a bit of a bind that SL wasn't updated to match 360 at the same time.

Microsoft Office was brought up as an example, but it is important to note that they charge $69 per year, not $999.