REALbasic: plans for future releases
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REALbasic: plans for future releases

REALbasic: plans for future releases

I wanted to take a moment to let all of you know what we are planning in
terms of our release schedule for future releases of REALbasic.

As you all know we released REALbasic 3.0 on February 12th of this year. One
of the big features of REALbasic 3.0 is support for Mac OS X. Specifically,
REALbasic 3.0 was designed to support Mac OS X Public Beta. We did this so
that those of you that were interested in getting a head start on Mac OS X
versions of your applications could do so.

There were many changes in Mac OS X between the public beta and final
release (Mac OS X 10.0). To maintain compatibility with Mac OS X 10.0, we
are currently finishing up development of REALbasic 3.1. This version will
be a free update for all registered REALbasic 3.0 users and will be the
version that is compatible with Mac OS X. This version also includes a
number of bug fixes that are unrelated to Mac OS X. If you wish to use
REALbasic with Mac OS X, please download 3.1 from our web site or wait for
3.1 to ship which should happen soon.

You can download the current 3.1 beta here:
(http://www.realsoftware.com/realbasic/prerelease/prerelease.html)

One important feature of Mac OS X which will not be supported in REALbasic
3.1 is core graphics. Core graphics is the engine in Mac OS X that provides
the rendering of most of the text you see in Mac OS X. Why have we decided
to leave this out of 3.1? Support for core graphics is not something that
applications ported to Mac OS X automatically take advantage of and it's
actually quite a bit of work to support. Rather than hold up our Mac OS X
version, we decided to hold off on this feature until we could take the time
to get it right.

REALbasic 3.2 will support core graphics both for applications built in
REALbasic and throughout the IDE as well. This will be the only significant
change in REALbasic 3.2. Our plan is to ship REALbasic 3.2 around the
beginning of May. This release will also be a free update for registered
REALbasic 3.0 users.

In the past our major releases were monolithic and spaced a year or more
apart with smaller maintenance releases scattered between them. This became
a problem because many of you prefer to use only official releases (rather
than betas) and if a feature or bug fix you needed was in a beta of the next
release, you might have to wait quite a while before that version shipped.

To solve this problem, we are planning to deliver two major releases per
year. REALbasic 3.5 will ship this summer and REALbasic 4.0 will appear at
the beginning of next year. Traditionally, our upgrade pricing has been half
the of the full price. Each of these releases will be a paid upgrade but not
a full price upgrade. We haven't decided on pricing yet but it will probably
be around 50 to 60% of the normal upgrade price. The result is that the cost
to upgrade from 3.0 to 4.0 will likely be about the same as the cost to
upgrade from 2.0 to 3.0. There will also be minor free updates between these
releases if we feel there is the need for them.

More frequently REALbasic releases will accomplish quite a bit. First, you
will get official shipping releases more often and on a schedule you can
count on. Second, it will be easier on your pocketbook. Third, we will be
able to respond more quickly to your requests and will be able to adapt more
quickly to new technologies that become available.

Speaking of your requests, we place a very high value on your comments and
feedback. This is driving force behind our strategy. We created REALbugs to
provide you with an easy and efficient way to provide us with your feature
requests and bug reports. I encourage each of you to use it for that
purpose. We are hard at work on a new release of REALbugs that will make it
an even better tool for you to use.

The goal of these changes is to make your experience with REALbasic even
better. These changes are one more step in that direction.
--

Geoff Perlman
President & CEO
REAL Software, Inc.
http://www.realsoftware.com

 
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