Adobe CS/CC Customer Service vs Avid's
I recently upgraded my Adobe and Avid software suites and was able to make a better comparison between both companies customer service. First, I want to make clear that except for the Creative Cloud membership, I always buy my software from authorized resellers like Videoguys and B&H, and not directly from the manufacturers (Avid, Adobe...).
After a year using Creative Cloud for $29.99 a month, I decided not to renew my membership and save me $49.99 a month until I really needed the latest versions of the software I use the most. Right now I'm using Avid Media Composer for editing so all I need to complete my workflow is, Photoshop, After Effects and Adobe Media Encoder, and those are pretty good in CS5.5. The following version, CS6, brought major improvements to Premiere Pro (GUI and under the hood) and the introduction of Prelude. It was hard, having to use Premiere Pro CS5.5 after using CS6, so I decided to upgrade to Production Premium CS6 perpetual license. These upgrades are sold only as Electronic Software Downloads (ESD, LIC). So I purchased the upgrade through the Videoguys website and that same day I received a confirmation e-mail from Adobe about my new Adobe License. So I click on the link provided and enter my Adobe ID. I was welcomed by a very intimidating screen with information about End User Organization, Deploy-to-contact and categories for different kind of licenses. I just wanted to install my software, so I went ahead and downloaded the installation image and got my serial key.
While visiting one of my daily forums I heard about the $19.99 a month, one year subscription to Creative Cloud full for CS6 users. Coming from paying $29.99 a month, I thought it was a good deal, so I decided to act, since the offer was good only until August the 31st. To my surprise, the system did not let me select the $19.99 option because my CS6 is a "Volume License". It was Friday night so both, Adobe and Videoguys were closed and since it was a holiday weekend, I have to wait until Tuesday to call. By that time, that offer was already over.
So today I called Videoguys and explained to them what happened. They told me to call Adobe since the problem was on their end. I then called Adobe and talked to a representative named Dolores. She said that they can't honor the special offer of a one year subscription to Creative Cloud (full) for $19.99 a month, because I have a "Volume License" and that was something that my vendor would have to fix. I told her that resellers only sell Licenses for ESD. She asked some questions that made me realize that she had no clue of how the process works when buying from an authorized reseller; (they are trained to handle only issues with their own ordering system). Then she said that there is nothing they can do since I did not purchased the upgrade directly from Adobe. So I called my vendor back and apparently I'm not the only one having that licensing issue with the upgrades.
How does that compare to Avid? They are also doing the Electronic Software Download only thing. I am going to miss the fancy boxes but this seems to be the industry trend. Anyways, what I really care about is to be able to use the software I already paid for until I decide it is time to upgrade. I had a Media Composer 5.5 and a Symphony 6 that I wanted to upgrade to version 6.5 with the option to later upgrade to version 7 for free. The problem is that the free upgrade to 7 offer was already over. So I called Videoguys and they told me that the offer was still good while supplies last. Just to be sure I contacted Avid through the User Forum and a famous Avid's Customer Advocate replied and told me to contact her privately. We exchanged e-mails and she even personally called me, (sometimes after office hours), during the whole process and after my problem was resolved, just to make sure I was 100 percent satisfied. They not just only solved my problem but also made me feel like a was a very important client with a large account.
I am not an Avid or Adobe fan boy. I like Avid products but love Adobe products even more. Premiere Pro CS6/CC is my favorite NLE, but in my market I can get more freelance gigs or a better staff position if I know Media Composer. Just wanted to share my experience in case you are planning to upgrade your Creative Suite or need to contact Customer Service.