What's "reasonable" in your opinion regarding software upgrades & discounts?

I bought Parallels v14 on June 24th, 2019 so I could virtualize my existing Mojave install in preparation for Catalina.

Now Catalina just dropped, v14 doesn’t work properly on Catalina, and Parallels wants $50 for me to “upgrade” to the current version. Their upgrade cutoff was apparently 8/1.

Do y’all think this is reasonable? I realize that devs need to get paid for new software releases because programmers don’t work for free, but it just really seems like a money grab.

It’s been a couple of days and they haven’t responded to my request for an upgrade.

Just wondering what y’all think. :slight_smile:

The upgrade fee is reasonable, but the cutoff date is ridiculous. Doubly so if they didn’t say anything about cutoff dates and upgrade pricing at the time of your original purchase (did they?).

Edited to add: the first public beta of Catalina dropped on June 24; a developer beta was out a little ahead of that. They knew Catalina was coming. So in my book they had an obligation to either give customers a good discount on v14, or have a much earlier cutoff for upgrade pricing on v15.


I don’t see it as a money grab, but certainly an annoyance that would make me feel less kindly towards the developer.
I’d find it reasonable if the price of $50 only applied after about 6 months. 2.5 months feels too short.

Parallels has always been a little slippery with its upgrade policy.

agree it’s a very short window - I moved to the parallels subscription model when it first came out as the pro version had things I needed.
It was a guaranteed for life price and as it’s now more than doubled I’m happy with them :slight_smile:

I started with Parallels, and for the last several years used VMWare Fusion. Both required multiple paid upgrades over the years, especially after major Mac upgrades. IMO, this was understandable considering the work necessary to keep the software up to date.

My users only needed to run 1 or 2 speciality programs (monitoring call center phone calls, etc). Eventually we chose to purchase inexpensive small form PCs, stick them under the desk, and run them via Microsoft Remote Desktop. They required much less support (my users were definitely not MPUs).

I wonder what will happen to Parallels/VMWare/VirtualBox when Apple starts using ARM chips. Emulation software was a royal pain to support in the PowerPC days.

I’d be doing the “buy another computer” thing if the OS I was trying to virtualize wasn’t Mojave. :smiley: Buying a second Mac is…financially impractical.

Although at some point I’m going to upgrade, and I have every intention of keeping my old Mac around for something. :slight_smile:

That’s where I’m sitting too. I’m fine with a $50 upgrade fee when whatever replaces Catalina ships next fall. $50 isn’t unreasonable.

But when the new OS is already in public beta I really think it’s time to consider sales of new products to include the version that supports that new OS.

Especially since they announced in early June on their forums that they were testing their software to ensure future compatibility with Catalina, and didn’t make any mention about the fact that it was going to be a paid upgrade.

Isn’t Parallels a paid upgrade every year?

Generally, yes — but when someone purchases the current version so close to the launch of the new version, they shouldn’t be asked to fork out an upgrade fee so quickly.

I’d think differently if @webwalrus had purchased the software in January, but he bought it when the public beta for Catalina was released.

At the very least, Parallels should have warned buyers that they’d be having to upgrade (and pay!) in less than three months. It’s not like Parallels didn’t know that.


I think Parallels is in a mature phase of their software’s lifecycle and so is a little too strict about how they extract money from us, similarly to Adobe. I don’t exactly blame them, because our actions speak louder than our words and we continue to use it and pay what they ask, but I am not happy with them about it and I’d like a new, viable company to come along and take my business.

And technically, the release of their new version was only about a month and a half after I purchased. I’m only really discovering the issue now, because now is when I need to virtualize my old drive on Catalina.

I called their support, and they offered me a $10 discount on the upgrade. I told them that since the full version price and the subscription price were the same at the time I bought, I’d be happy to just have them swap one for the other and let my subscription lapse on June 24th. They weren’t interested in that swap.

In a related note, VMWare will allow me to crossgrade my Parallels license to Fusion 11.5 for $47.50. I think it’s at least a little bit insane that (a) VMWare is offering me a better price on software with a (likely) longer life cycle than Parallels, and (b) Parallels doesn’t seem to care whether or not they lose me as a customer.

Sorry, bad day for my reading skill.

I was happily surprised that I did not have to upgrade VMWare Fusion this year. Given the changes I heard from Parallels, I had thought there was no way around the upgrade this time. Before Catalina came out, VMWare issued a free update to those running 11.1 to 11.5 that was Catalina compatible.

I’ve purchased and used both in the past, but decided to stick with VMWare Fusion for the longer haul. I am not a power user on virtual machines, but it gets the job done for Office and other Windows-only apps. If you can wait, VMWare usually has a discount on upgrades or transfers around Thanksgiving. I say usually since one has to search for it sometimes, and I haven’t upgraded every year. Just some thoughts. I agree that a couple of months would too short to charge a customer again. Best wishes on the change/upgrade.