A quick note for Avid Pro Tools users: until December 31st, users with expired perpetual licenses can upgrade to the current version of the audio editing software.
Why is this important? Well, to understand why this Pro Tools upgrade is compelling, we’ll need to know a bit of history.
Pro Tools Upgrade and Subscription History
In 2015 Avid began offering a monthly subscription with the release of the Pro Tools 12 version of the audio editing software. For $25+ a month, users could rent Pro Tools and avoid the substantial price of buying the software outright. The subscription unlocked continual updates. However, if one let their subscription lapse, they could no longer use the app.
This subscription was sold side-by-side with the existing perpetual licenses that allowed customers to pay once and own the software forever. Those perpetual owners had access to updates for a year. When that year was up, users needed to top-up with a new license to receive another year of upgrades.
Many people found the perpetual licenses were a better deal. Pro Tools generally introduces significant features slowly. So, people would pay one price and keep that version for years, and upgrade to a new version with a reinstatement plan only when they needed. For many, that was cheaper than paying a monthly subscription. There were also fans that preferred to own software outright, instead of being “held captive” by a monthly subscription.
In 2019, prices went up. In November of that year, Avid cancelled reinstatement plans. The upshot? If you wanted to keep a perpetual license up to date, you had to pay every year. Miss a year? Customers would need to buy an entirely new license. It was an obvious move to drive people towards purchasing subscriptions.
Avid Re-Introduces Reinstatement Plans
Earlier this month Avid re-introduced their reinstatement plans – but only until December 31. So, if you have a perpetual license that has lapsed, you can buy back in.
You can buy the reinstatement directly from Avid. Just visit Avid, log in, and view “My Products”. Find your expired license and look on the right side. The option is in a misleadingly labeled drop down:
Move to a Subscription: Pro Tools $249.00 Pro Tools Annual Upgrade with Software Updates + Support Plan
Please note, though, buying via Avid applies the reinstatement immediately. If you want to get a bit more milage out of your license, you can buy a license from a reseller like Sweetwater or B&H. This will provide you with a code you can use at any time to upgrade to a current version.
That’s a good way to “bank” an upgrade for later. After all, it’s unlikely Avid will offer reinstatement plans frequently – or ever again. For some, it may make sense to buy many reinstatement plans, skip the yearly renewal fees, and upgrade only when needed.
Why Buy a Pro Tools Upgrade?
Well, the community is anticipating a Pro Tools update for compatibility with MacOS Monterey and Apple Silicon chips (M1, M1 Pro, M1 Max). This is an excellent opportunity to buy a license, wait until just after a Monterey/Apple Silicon Pro Tools release, and then upgrade for a full year of updates.
Don’t have a Mac or Apple Silicon? It’s still a great opportunity to get fresh software and bank upgrades for the future – but only until December 31, 2021.
Learn more at the B&H versions of the reinstatement plan pages: