[TenTec] Re: Jupiter firmware problems...NOT! (SO!... )

KE4TEG ke4teg@bellsouth.net
Tue, 03 Sep 2002 16:10:28 -0400

Who started this willing to pay a yearly fee for firmware updates? Are all 
you let's pay more people out of your minds?! That is like asking the Boss 
to take 50 dollars a week out of your paycheck for himself or asking can I 
please pay more in taxes. You bought a great product and paid good money. 
Ten-Tec is a great company and has legendary customer and product support. 
Also, remember that Ten-Tec reads this board, why in the world would any 
Ham offer such a proposition?

Next, thinking if such a program did exist, Ten-Tec would be pressured into 
making yearly updates on every radio in the program (looks like 4 possible 
radios at this time, 2 not yet out). That does not make good business 
sense. Also Ten-Tec is nice enough to offer free firmware updates which 
they do not have to do. That is again part of the legendary Ten-Tec 
customer support. It also means that Ten-Tec can take a radio out of 
production when it is best for them as well as stop supporting a radio when 
it is again best for them. And, who is going to keep track of who paid and 
who didn't? Surely not Ten-Tec and what about used radios? "Hey I got a 
great deal on a used Orion, but it has the original firmware and I have to 
pay $2000 in back annual updates to get the latest version!" Every Ham is 
not going to want to pay which increases the price of such a program, 
decreases the incentive for Ten-Tec to have such a program, and finally you 
have the group of Hams that think they already paid to much for the rig but 
want to just get every fifth update because they now have to pay for it. 
Let us not even suggest that customers are even slightly willing to pay 
annual fees on radios we have already bought and paid for. Besides you do 
not think that Ten-Tec starts from scratch each time they do an update? The 
hard part has been done, the first production firmware build. Firmware 
updates are timely improvements or bug fixes. They should be left at that 
and at Ten-Tec's discretion. Again we bought and paid for a product that 
comes with a warranty and a return policy if we do not like it. Ten-Tec 
never stated that the unit would be kept current as part of that payment, 
it is just that fabulous Ten-Tec product and customer support. Besides, 
other then top shelf rigs (like the Orion), Amateur Radio is quickly headed 
toward the current consumer electronics future. Buy it, use it, throw it 
out, go buy the latest and greatest. Would anyone of us have his/her VCR 
repaired?  No, we would go buy a new one for $45 (most likely better and 
with more features then the one we had) or get a DVD player.

What makes Ten-Tec radios so great, besides the obvious part that they make 
terrific ham gear, is the fact that they are working hard to keep that buy 
it and/or throw it away to update/repair future away from all us Hams. It 
makes us all feel better and makes it easier when we pay out that hard 
earned money for a Ten-Tec product. For Ten-Tec, the "Free" firmware 
updates are a good selling point and also make it easier for a Ham to buy 
one of their new rigs knowing that when 60 Meters (or most likely any other 
new band) is available all the rig needs is a firmware update. Would you 
buy a Brand New Orion now, knowing that 60M is coming, if you knew it would 
not work on 60, probably not.

73 Keith

At 02:12 PM 09/02/2002 -0400, tongaloa wrote:
>That's a bad analogy. The updates are 'free' in the sense that I do not
>have to pay any additional money for them.
>Under the DMCA I can not legally reverse engineer TenTec's
>SW in order to make a modification. I would have to rewrite the
>whole mess from scratch! This is a severely limits my interest
>in owning such a radio. Add a fee structure to updates that
>I might like to make myself and share with other hams and I've
>no interest in owning the radio.
>Why should  "we as hams" expect "them" to continually
>improve a radio once we've purchased it? We should be
>doing this ourselves.
>----- Original Message -----
>From: "Rich McCabe" <rich@1967z28.com>
>To: <tentec@contesting.com>
>Sent: Tuesday, September 03, 2002 1:29 PM
>Subject: Re: [TenTec] Re: Jupiter firmware problems...NOT! (SO!... )
> > " I do not like the idea of paying for software updates which are now
> > without something in exchange"
> >
> > That is kinda like saying I do not like paying for automobiles when
> > is currently free. That may be the case for some, and I am not sure
> > why you think you are "entitled to something in exchange". Did I miss
> > making the statement that updates will always be free? I honestly do not
> > know, so that is a question.
> >
> > I would rather fund TenTec with a annual fee so they can do more with what
> > already own. How can we as hams expect them to continually improve (for
> > free) software for products they have already sold. What is the incentive
> > that?
> >
> > 73,
> >
> > Rich
> >
> >
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "tongaloa" <tongaloa@alltel.net>
> > To: "Duane Grotophorst" <n9dg@yahoo.com>; "Robert & Linda McGraw K4TAX"
> > <RMcGraw@blomand.net>; "Howard smith" <jsmith20@wi.rr.com>;
> > <tentec@contesting.com>
> > Sent: Monday, September 02, 2002 11:24 AM
> > Subject: Re: [TenTec] Re: Jupiter firmware problems...NOT! (SO!... )
> >
> >
> > > I do not like the idea of paying for software updates which are
> > > now free, without something in exchange. That something being
> > > a lower price on the hardware and an open source approach to the
> > > software so that we could 'roll our own' tweaks. Under a GPL type
> > > license, TenTec would benefit from third party effort applied to the
> > > code because it is written for their radios!
> > >
> > > I for one would be all over a <$500 computer controlled receiver
> > > built around a single SHARC processor if I had access to the source
> > > code to add to and  modify at will. I suspect there would be a huge
> > > crossover of computer hobbiests who are interested in DSP and TenTec
> > > would see huge sales compared to their traditional amateur market.
> > >
> > > A significant number of these purchasers will become interested
> > > enough in ham radio to want a transmitter as well. A rising tide
> > > of purchasers for all TT products!
> > >
> > > If TT does not follow this course, someone else will.
> > >
> > > Bob wb4mnf
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
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> > > TenTec@contesting.com
> > > http://lists.contesting.com/mailman/listinfo/tentec
> > >
> >
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