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Chris Rolliston just posted a link to a video (from Russia) where-in the pricing for XE4 is revealed. All $ amounts mentioned in this article are US $ prices. Your local price may vary depending on how much exchange rate gouging is added on top of the gouging already built in.

In a nutshell, Delphi users are going to be asked to stump up another $49 for this “upgrade”, assuming they do not want the iOS support they might reasonably feel they previously already paid for and then had yanked away from them.

If they do want that iOS platform, then the asking price is $499.

The New User price will be $999.

As Chris mentions, RemObjects price for Oxygene, with support for Windows (.NET), OS X, iOS (beta) and Android is $499. But that is the New User price, not an upgrade or renewal.

He also points out that whilst Oxygene supports these many and varied platforms, there is no consistent UI library spanning all of these, nor indeed much in the way of a consistent RTL. There is a framework project to address the RTL aspect of this, called Sugar, which will be open source and is expected to be opened up for general access in the next month or two. But as far as the UI library is concerned, I agree with RemObjects that this is one of the great strengths of the Oxygene approach.

Instead of a one-size-to-fit-all behemoth of an UI framework (the implementation of much of which still leaves a lot to be desired) that can be made to appear “native” via an additional layer of styling on top of the already complex UI library itself, each platform variant of Oxygene instead is bound directly and therefore more efficiently to the true, native UI framework of each supported platform.

I see this as a benefit. Not a disadvantage.

Embarcadero’s continued claims to offer “native” development on any platform these days relies on contortions and exclusions that are imho inexcusable from a technology company addressing a technically qualified audience.

Also worth mentioning – which Chris does not – is that if you are a RAD Studio user, then when you fork out for your “upgrade” to XE4, whether you pay the extra for iOS support or not, you will also lose Prism XE4 as this will no longer be part of the Embarcadero platform offering.

I found this to be an interesting observation in Marc’s post:

It’s probably unlikely that you’re buying RAD Studio XE4 “fresh” without already being an existing RAD Studio user, but if you do, i’m afraid you will not receive “Prism XE4″ as part of it.

Maybe I am jumping at shadows but I read this as a slightly sneaky (or perhaps just accidental/unintended ?) revelation. Marc is presumably privy to sales information as a result of RemObjects relationship with Embarcadero that the rest of us can only speculate about, but this suggests that there are very, very few new user licenses – if any – being sold, for RAD Studio at least.

I think a lot of people have suspected this, and that RAD Studio and perhaps also Delphi are in a final phase of their life – perhaps a very extended denouement, but a denouement none-the-less – and not enjoying the resurgence that the more optimistic (delusional?) might have supposed.

So we perhaps should not expect fairness, let alone generosity, from Embarcadero when it comes to their existing customers. Those existing customers are pretty much their only customers, so they have to make as much money out of those still left while they still can.

For myself, when considering whether to spend $499 to add iOS support and thereby committing myself to a course which ends with me spending who knows how much else to – hopefully – add Android support at some unknown point in the future (see Footnote, below), or to spend $399 to get .NET, OS X, iOS AND Android, now…

Well, it’s really not that tough of a decision. Is it ?

So I apologise to that remaining and dwindling group of Embarcadero customers. But your prices are going to keep going up as the number of people prepared to put up with such shenanigans continues to decline.

Footnote

My fiancé is currently away on business, otherwise – as someone fluent in Russian – I could ask her to translate some of the information in the presentation contained in the video that Chris links to. Specifically I am curious about the various references to Android that seem to crop-up in various places.

Then again, we all know how reliable the information in Embarcadero presentations can prove to be, so maybe it’s not worth putting her to that trouble in the first place.

58 thoughts on “XE4 Pricing Revealed”

  1. “There is a framework project to address the RTL aspect of this, called Sugar, which will be open source and is expected to be opened up for general access in the next month or two.”

    Er, so RemObjects’ Oxygene customers can write their own RTL. Great! (Rememer ShineOn….?)

    Any particular reason why you don’t apparently see value in cross platform non-visual libraries? I just don’t see the point without them.

    1. Not quite.

      Sugar has been a work-in-progress for some time as I understand it. It’s not a question of RemObjects creating an empty project and then saying “OK, now everyone start writing your own RTL”. Rather it’s a question of their having been working on it for some time, ensuring that it holds up across all 3 platforms (it’s surprisingly easy to think you have a general purpose framework when you have only 2 targets, only to find that the 3rd target that comes along disrupts your blissful idyll). With Nougat approaching official release, Sugar is now – I presume – at a point where it is both stable and broad enough that it won’t collapse under the weight of everyone chipping in their own personal preferred way of doing all the things that an RTL needs to do.

      Although I say all that without – as I said – knowing what state Sugar is in right now. 🙂

      But it is really no different from the RTL parts of the VCL, except that in that case there is no central, user-modifiable repository for that to be managed in, so if anyone wishes to change or extend their own personal variations in the RTL they do it in their own personal project spaces. Which is why we then end up with a multitude of different and sometime conflicting “StrUtils” units, for example.

      I am curious where you think I said I don’t see value in cross-platform non-visual libraries ?

      I am very much looking forward to seeing what Sugar has to offer. It has been the main thing holding me back from using Oxygene for Android and iOS development. Up to now.

      The alternative, with Delphi – the one-size-fits all abomination that contrives not just a cross-platform RTL but also imposes an abstracted, non-native UI framework strong-armed into delivering a “native-like looky feely” – is equally unacceptable to me.

      More so in fact.

      1. ‘I am curious where you think I said I don’t see value in cross-platform non-visual libraries ?’

        Because you initially seemed to ignore my acknowledgement that RemObjects (and by extension, their customers) may reasonably believe cross platform *visual* libraries are uninteresting.

        That said, the Delphi RTL for Windows and OS X is genuinely well done in my view, and presented in a traditional Delphi style. In particular, it doesn’t attempt to prevent mixing Delphi and pure platform code like FMX does, or at least did.

        As for Sugar… we’ll see.

        1. “Ignored” ? Paragraph 6 began with a discussion of precisely this point in your post ?! How can you think I ignored that at all ? I address your belief that RemObjects find it “uninteresting” by pointing out that actually, it’s a more pro-active choice than that: they believe that a cross-platform visual framework is simply the wrong way to go.

          The cross-platform RTL in Delphi is a mess.

          The RTL that was inherited and ported in a compatible fashion for the new platforms is convenient in some areas (one TStringlist to rule them all), but sorely lacking in others (“String” remains compatible with PChar but hoops have to be jumped through for us as/with NSStrings), and the newly designed “features” using “platform services” are an abomination.

          It may simply be that there was too much accumulated baggage to make a clean break. But the biggest reason for that was the failure to take advantage of the “clean break” opportunity that 64-bit and Unicode presented to clean-up the VCL and better prepare it for these challenges.

  2. Internally we are very disappointed and manage push us to release iOS with many open bugs won’t be fixed on time, but management is pushing and really don’t care about the quality. The only piece of all of this that is stable is the IBLite (InterBase Lite)

    “RemObjects relationship with Embarcadero that the rest of us can only speculate about, but this suggests that there are very, very few new user licenses – if any – being sold, for RAD Studio at least.”

    You are correct, the RAD Studio revenue is not that much, Delphi standalone is the major revenue, unfortunately based on all the management mistakes Delphi revenue dropped almost 17%

  3. >So we perhaps should not expect fairness, let alone generosity, from
    >Embarcadero when it comes to their existing customers. Those existing
    >customers are pretty much their only customers, so they have to make as
    >much money out of those still left while they still can.

    Oh boy. My suggesting that Embarcadero was in “milk the cow” mode with Delphi and had given up on acquiring new users got Marco to threaten to not allow any more of my “FUD” comments posted on his blog a few months ago. Expect explosions over this statement. 🙁

    It’s not just Oxygene though. There’s FreePascal/Lazarus. There’s also RevRun’s LiveCode, which just went open source for personal use and open source projects (GPL 3), which is a very high level, hypercard-inspired language that targets Windows, Linux, OS X, Android and iOS. There’s Xamarin’s .Net/C# for Android and iOS (as well as all major desktop OSes). It’s high-end commercial price is $499.There’s Qt, which targets all the desktops and embedded now and has just released previews/alpha or betas of iOS and Android support in version 5.1 and is already at trade shows presenting a very attractive demo that runs across desktops, tablets and phones. Qt is available under a commercial or LGPL license. Qt can be used with a host of languages including C++ and python. Python has IMHO become the new Turbo Pascal itself, replacing Pascal/Modula 2/Delphi in the West at colleges and high schools (including MIT), being the official development language of the Raspberry Pi (with an estimated million boards in the hands of school children right now), an educator summit being held at last month’s PyCon to give educators a say in the directions the language takes, etc. Cheap(free), easy to learn, exposure at a young age, large ecosystem, yet powerful enough to produce commercial software – just like the Turbo Pascal many of us grew up with. Of course, Turbo Pascal was never open source or cross-platform.

    Embarcadero doesn’t mention *any* other product in their sales literature, which is somewhat bizarre (everybody tries to make a case over their competition, and I read a lot of sales literature). I’d felt they’d already given up trying to convince any non-Delphi user that their product was worth the cost, but now I’m not sure how they’re even going to be able to convince what user base remains, given all the options that are materializing left and right that are often some combination of cheaper, better supported, larger ecosystem or higher quality.


  4. You are correct, the RAD Studio revenue is not that much, Delphi standalone is the major revenue, unfortunately based on all the management mistakes Delphi revenue dropped almost 17%

    XE2 was sold very well because of Win64. But XE3 hat nothing new for desktop people. The Next Generation compiler for Mobile only. The mobile path is very very small at the moment. No wonder.

    At the moment Delphis GUI capabilities are far behind Qts (300MB graphics stuff wuth rich documentation). For graphics programmer Delphi is nearly an option. They moving to Qt.

    1. I skipped XE3 because no new things (except you can float the Forms Designer).
      What new things for Desktop in XE4? I want better IDE (Visual Studio is so much ahead).

  5. As a very long term Delphi user and small ISV we are or should be that core user base for Embarcadero. A couple of months ago we took the decision that Delphi was no longer our only tool for the future, meaning for a start that they have lost all future revenue from us.

    We are starting to use Oxygene and problably Hydra. I’ve posted similar on Marc Hoffman’s blog, but I find it telling that we’re in the position of feeling more comfortable with their (still beta) offering for iOS than the more widely touted FireMonkey alternative. Their approach in general is also better thought out, has less historical baggage and gives you maximum access to every platform.

    Add to that all the recent (and not so recent debarcles) and the current state of things and we’re now saying that the future looks pretty much as you describe it Jolyon. I can’t help but think that Embarcadero have been both too ambitious with FireMonkey and at the same time over stretched themselves by under achieving on delivery.

    If just a week before the release of supposedly disruptive technology, they can’t muster much more than a collective “meh” from the internet then maybe the writing truly is on the wall.

    Paul.

  6. I’m not sure I agree with your assessment of removing Prism from RAD Studio. I’ve seen job opportunities for Delphi, but not one for Prism. EVER. However, it looks like they replaced Prism with HTML5 Builder, which makes a LOT more sense. I do NOT own RAD Studio simply because I cannot justify the added cost for two of four components that I’ll never use (Prism and the DB), and only rarely need the other (C++ Builder).

    From everything I’ve read, if you just own the Pro Edition, regardless of whether you’ve got SA or not, it’s going to cost you to upgrade to XE4 with iOS support. The SA only includes this upgrade starting with RAD Studio.

    The replacement of Prism with HTML5 Builder makes RAD Studio much more attractive to me, and I just might bite the bullet.

    1. I must have missed all those job ads for HTML Builder. Or perhaps they were for Delphi for PHP, or RAD PHP or whatever it was called at the time. 😉

      1. Wouldn’t the job ads for those tools just be for PHP or HTML development?

          1. That is not true, Oxygen is just one of not so well known options in .NET. If you generalize it, then .NET is C# (with Visual Studio IDE). PHP on other end is no so tied to IDE (your comparison to Delphi for PHP etc) as to language itself.

            1. And the PHP part of HTMLBuilder is tied to the VCL for PHP afaik, and is not really a serious contender as a general purpose PHP IDE. A job might be advertised for PHP but given two equally capable candidates where one has Eclipse experience and the other HTML Builder, which will get the job do we think ?

              With .NET, framework knowledge is as important as language. Arguably more so since the framework is essentially the same no matter what language is used to code against it.

              But it’s a stupid debate. The original comment was based on “.NET is of no use to me, PHP is”, and there are any number of variations of X is useful Y isn’t that can be applied to the combinations in RAD Studio. No one combination can be applied universally to say “this is a good move (for everyone)”.

              1. I never said anything about .NET.

                What I said is that I’ve never seen a single job req that specifies Prism. I *HAVE* seen plenty (most) that specifically call for Visual Studio, as well as other .NET platforms, like VB .NET and VBA.NET.

                Prism is “Pascal for .NET”. It’s NOT C#. I don’t care how passionate you may be about it, a company using C# is not going to let you arbitrarily use a tool that supports Pascal. It just isn’t going to happen. (Cripes, my employer won’t even let me make the changes needed to support unit testing! Companies just aren’t usually very flexible.)

                As for HTML5 Builder … it generates php, css, xml, and all the same stuff that people are working with today who build smart web sites. It’s NOT “Dephi” or even “Pascal”. The fact that it’s got a proprietery framework / run-time system isn’t terribly significant because most projects need SOME KIND of run-time framework, and there’s no clear leader among the dozen or so being used today.

              2. People who have cut their teeth on PHP using Delphi for PHP/RadPHP/HTMLBuilder/Whatever it’s called this year will not – in the general case – have the same breadth of general PHP skills or experience as someone who cut their teeth using raw PHP or one of the other frameworks.

                Yes, there may be a multitude of such other frameworks, but just how widespread in use is the “PHP VCL” framework ?

                With .NET it is an entirely different proposition. Nobody, least of all I, suggested that an advert for a C# job is aimed at an Oxygene/Prism developer. But if you get an application from such a person, their depth and breadth of knowledge of the .NET framework is 100% applicable. Language syntax these days is a far less significant portion of the body of knowledge that a developer brings to the table. With increasingly complex IDE’s, familiarity and productivity with the specific tools employed in the development workflow is also far more important now than it used to be.

                An Oxygene developer is a NET developer and also a Visual Studio developer (less so the latter point w.r.t Prism).
                A Delphi for PHP/RadPHP/HTMLBuilder developer on the other hand is a very niche creature indeed.

                The fact that HTML Builder can be used to produce things in particular syntax contributes nothing to somebody’s knowledge and experience of, for example, Eclipse.

                I am not “beating the drum” or have any particular axe to grind. I don’t have (yet) an Oxygene license and my Delphi is just that – Delphi. Not RAD Studio. But I do know that yours is the only voice I have ever heard claiming that HTMLBuilder or any of it’s previous incarnations is in any way in the mainstream, and I have heard many voices complaining that it is too idiosyncratic to be considered such.

      2. I know it’s not the same thing, but a few weeks ago for fun I did a job search and found precisely one job listing across the entire United States that referenced Intraweb. 🙂

  7. Lol i feel ripped off. Low cost they said … also I bought xe2 for iOS support with SA … I cancelled my SA just for this reason. We still can’t put apps in Windows 8 app store. And like always $ = € … which I am not ok with. It’s downloaded from the same place, so I want to pay in dollars, plain simple

  8. As for the mentioned webinar (hosted by Kirill Rannev). The main points I guess were

    – support base mobile platforms (ios, later – android), maybe server linux some later (and in perspective devices like smart tvs…)
    – FireDac should work on all supported platforms
    – Android is expected Q3 – Q4 2013.
    – hard work on new compiler is done, new platforms/additions should be made faster.
    – Emb. becomes sponsor of Standard C++ Foundation (isocpp.org)

    Next week there should be webinar (in Russian) hosted by Vsevolod Leonov, that should have more tech info.

  9. Just for the record, i have no insider knowledge on recent RAD Studio sales numbers or new-user vs.renewal percentages (and if i had, that would most likely be confidential information that i’d not flippantly share). My comments were purely based on the (unscientific) gut feeling that as far as i can tell from my interactions with the community and customers, most people using Delphi these days are those that have been using it for a long time, and i doubt that there’s a huge insurgence of “fresh blood” coming to the Delphi (or Pascal, in general) field, sadly.

    Although we recently did a special Oxygene promotion for students in cooperation with a reseller in NL, and the interest and uptake for that has been rather surprising and refreshing, so maybe there is a chance for Pascal to survive us old farts, after all 😉

    1. Fair enough, and I was careful to make it clear that it was only my speculative interpretation and I wasn’t actually attributing specific revelations to your words. Those words do, as you say, echo the general feeling about things I think. Unfortunately. 🙂

      1. I know you meant no harm. I’m only setting the record straight because the powers that be are already getting itchy about the fact that we posted *any* official statement/clarification regarding Prism and XE4. I suppose keeping everyone in the dark and let the rumors fly is the preferred the way to handle those things, these days.

        1. Keeping people in the dark, proceeding being user’s back and then whining about FUD has been a staple of Borland’s (and now EMBT’s) PR for a long while. CodeGear was obviously an accident.

  10. I loved the wording – Low Cost Add-On – from the very first day on. In Austria we call such words spoken a ‘Wucht(e)l’ – telling nice stories that will fairly turn out the way told. Wuchteldrucker are the ones who do. (drucker – to print – to ‘shape’).

    Agree – we will see … I think it has been a lot of work for EMB. Honestly at the price of the RadStudio you get a superb iMac + IDE and at price of SA a new office desk + chair.

  11. To upgrade RAD Studio XE2 Architect to RAD Studio XE4 Architect, how much $$$ can I expect to shell out?

  12. Ugh…I bought RAD Studio XE3 Professional WITH SA late last year. If all I get for that is a “free” (aka save $49) upgrade from XE3 to XE4 with no iOS support I will *not* be a happy camper.

    I paid several hundred dollars more for RAD Studio Pro with SA solely so that I would get iOS support when it became available.

    1. Well, to be fair, you were never promised anything so any expectation you had would have to be based on how you expected Embarcadero to treat their customers, and there was plenty of evidence in the last 12 months to support the view that this would be “like something they trod in” and not “something they value”.

      I wonder at what point those people who repeatedly insist that we should “give Embarcadero a chance” and not “assume the worst” are going to finally accept that they’ve had all the chances they deserve, and more, and that “the worst” has actually become “the norm”.

      1. Well, good news. With RAD Studio Professional XE3 + SA, I was just able to download and install RAD Studio XE4 Pro….and it comes with iOS support!

        I’m glad to see Embarcadero met my expectations with iOS support in RAD Studio Pro XE4!

  13. Makes me wonder where we’d all be had all the money, effort and support of the community benefited Lazarus/FPC instead of EMBT.

    1. People go with open source software because they are politically, religiously, or philosophically opposed to paying for software in the first place. EMBT is a commercial software development company based in America that has a lot of overhead and employees to pay.

      Folks are free to whine about the fact that they think software should be free like air, but that doesn’t pay the rent or overhead needed to keep the developers working on it here in America. I don’t know how folks who do OSS development PAY THEIR RENT AND FOOD, but I suspect they either live with their parents, have a spouse who works, or they’re supported by a socialist government that provides this for them.

      I also find that many of the loudest whiners about commercial software come from people who life in countries where the DON’T have to worry about losing their home and all of their possessions if they can’t pay their bills. In case you guys don’t follow American politics, we here in America aren’t as fair minded — just take a look at how many “social safety net” programs are losing funding, even after so many people (millions, literally) have lost their entire life savings and property because of the recent economic problems here.

      Nobody in America is paying their rent by developing free software on their own. They’re almost all going to be found working for a company that has sufficient income from other sources (like support fees or other products entirely, like how Google makes most of their money from search ads) to support the OSS development work they’re doing.

      I’m not saying that OSS development couldn’t benefit from additional resources. Only that if they started charging, they’d probably have their servers attacked and their software messed up. Where we’d most likely be is … neither Lazarus nor FPC would be around any more.

      But hey … you’re welcome to bug Google or IBM and see if they’d be interested in funding Lazarus/FPC work so they can put EMBT out of business. Good luck with that!

      In the mean time, EMBT is the flag-bearer for Delphi/Object Pascal technologies, and they will succeed to the extent that people stop pissing and whining about the fact that THEY ARE A COMMERCIAL BUSINESS and therefore THEY CHARGE FEES FOR THEIR SOFTWARE!

      All things considered, from a purely commercial standpoint, their costs are not unreasonable in a marketplace that has a thriving bunch of suppliers and competitors. Unfortunately, today we have Microsoft and everybody else. Most of those “everybody else” is giving away their products (because it’s OSS stuff) because they don’t want to bother competing with Microsoft. EMBT is just about the only company left standing that’s actually competing with Microsoft for Windows dev tools! Now they’re edging into the world of mobile software development, and they’re also competing with “free”. It’s a tough road they’ve chosen. Going free themselves is a losing proposition for everybody.

      So instead of all this bashing, how about let’s help them succeed?

      1. First of all, Open Source is not synonymous with free, so you might want to take a deep breath and think again about how that might affect your prejudices against people who align themselves with OSS.

        More generally, I hope you feel better now. Now that you’ve vented your splene, maybe you could calm down, stop trying to turn a reasonable discussion into some sort of political socio-economic crusade, and contribute something useful instead.

        Nobody as far as I can see in these comments at least, is saying that Delphi should be free. What people are saying is that Embarcadero indicated that iOS would be added back in to the product at a “low cost”. This was not promised, but this is the indication that people were given, and in some cases people parted with their money in good faith on the strength of this.

        What we have is not a “low cost” upgrade, but rather a fabricated “new release” to justify the price being charged. How do we know it is a fabricated new release ? You only have to look at the nominal charge for this “upgrade” for anyone not taking the iOS component.

        And lest we forget, many people will consider that they already paid for this and feel a degree of chagrin at Embarcadero delivering a “beta” of a product upgrade that it turns out was nothing of the sort. This coming also after Embarcadero tried to play fast and loose with the EULA, with the intention of screwing more money out of their dwindling market.

        What is really going on, when you let the dust from hyperbolic rants such as yours die down, is that the Delphi market place is in terminal decline. Embarcadero is trying to get as much money out of that market as they can before it dries up completely, a process which is accelerated, not delayed, by the increase in prices. Prices you seem to think are justified. It’s a free market of course, and you are welcome to pay those prices as long as you don’t mind ending up being the only one footing the bill for the “R&D” of Delphi, because that is the ultimate, inevitable conclusion of the folly of simply “sucking it up” every-time the promises sold to you turn to ashes.

        More reasonably minded people on the other hand look around at the prices being charged for more innovative products with comparable R&D costs but significantly superior results, and they look at the litany of broken promises and ever-more miserly and cynical treatment of customers by Embarcadero, and they start to wonder NOT “where can I go and get the same thing for no money”, but “where can I go where I will be treated like a CUSTOMER, rather than a SUCKER”.

        You might also wish to consider that in your beloved capitalist nirvana, not only are people required to fend for themselves, but so are companies. Customer don’t owe their suppliers anything, and if a company starts treading on it’s customers in the way that Embarcadero have taken to doing, they will pay the price as those customers become “former customers”. But let’s not kid ourselves that Embarcadero care. It’s quite evident that they do not.

        So keep waving your banner up on that high and mighty hill of yours. But I hope you enjoy your own jingoistic company because before too long, yours will be the only figure up there.

        Cue: Another hyperbolic rant about how people have been protesting that “Delphi is dead” for years blah blah blah.

        Enjoy yourself.

        1. I was replying to the comment above my post that said, “Makes me wonder where we’d all be had all the money, effort and support of the community benefited Lazarus/FPC instead of EMBT.”

          Forgive me if I mislabeled Lazarus/Free Pascal as “open source” if they’re really commercial products.

          And forgive me for being annoyed at the unending sniping that foreigners enjoy taking at American companies that either make profits or they die because that’s how things roll here.

          If folks think they can do better, then turn Lazarus / Free Pascal into real products, put a price on them if you’re so motivated, set up a support team of foreigners who work for peanuts, and go to town with something better! I’m sure you can run EMBT right out of town.

          FWIW, I don’t like EMBT’s policies much either. I’ve never worked anywhere that licenses any version other than the Professional Edition for its developers, and yet EMBT promotes this stuff as if everybody has the Enterprise Edition. It has become a total waste of time sitting through demos that are built around features that aren’t in the Professional edition — like DataSnap and now the new data connectivity stuff. And I don’t like the fact that their SA doesn’t seem to cover squat for people with Pro licenses, especially with regard to their new mobile technologies.

          I pay for a Delphi license out of my own pocket in order to avoid dealing with NDAs, resource sharing, and other potentially contentious issues that might arise with my employer and personal stuff that represents possible commercial interest. I do not have $4000 to dump into every release. So I’m not happy about the way EMBT has been doing their marketing lately in the least — making time-limited offers for bundles with “specials”, then turning around and making more offers that bundle even more stuff. Then they said the mobile stuff would be an “inexpensive plugin”. Now it’s looking like it’s neither “inexpensive” nor a “plugin”.

          Same crap, different day.

          Oh, wait. Don’t look now, but I think we’re on the same horse.

          1. Then I think you over-reacted. Wondering what ‘X’ might have bought if it had been spent improving ‘A’ instead of ‘B’ is not the same as saying that you think ‘B’ should be free, even if ‘A’ happens to be.

            And still you conflate “open source’ with “non-commercial’. I really think you should do a bit more research in this area before mounting your high horse next time around.

            Similarly I really think you need to change your tune. If people are criticising Embarcadero it is not because they are an American company, it is because they are a company that increasingly is seen to mistreat their customers. Where they are incorporated is of literally no importance or relevance to that. If you deem such criticism to be a criticism of Corporate America as a whole then you would seem to be your own worst enemy as it must then be you yourself who tars America with that brush. Nobody else is.

            Companies can profit without riding rough-shod over their customers, and often the most profitable companies are precisely those that value their customers, not merely endeavour to extract value from them at every opportunity.

            We may have similar destinations in mind but no, I do not think we are on the same horse.

      2. You name the open source developers that are actively and fulltime employed to develop OSS.

        Except a few high visibility projects (like openoffice, kernel etc), most open source project comes from SMB that simply use the software as a component somewhere in their stack.

        Since, believe me, also OUTSIDE the US developers pay rent.

  14. I notice that people start to stay away of OOP Pascal/Delphi and I think that in a way, Delphi’s “fast” rate of change is the reason. I am an user of Delphi XE3, and in comparison is much weaker than Xamarin Studio/C#. And even when I found some annoyances (mostly on the refactoring tool, which is itself a very sad story for Delphi), I could fix some myself as the refactoring part is opensource. Is the IDE part really a key feature today BTW? Some years ago LLVM’s creator (in the Google’s Code Talk) said that compilers are not a profitable business, what would make today’s IDEs to be one? And even so, an IDE that competes with VS 2003 (in terms of features and stability) what would make it a good bet for future? I understand that iOS can be crucial for some, and supporting “everything with one codebase” can be important, but if performance is not the ultimate reason, why not use Ruby? RubyMine’s IDE cost like 100 dollars and can be deployed to phones (on iOS there is a need to pay a separate license though). But is more productive and really practical to do so.

    As it looks to me, Delphi has fewer and fewer things to be usable with, and comparing with main competitors on Desktop/Enterprise (Java or C#), Delphi looks more and more like a joke.
    – One codebase on all platforms in C#? Eto.Forms http://picoe.ca/2012/09/11/introducing-eto-forms-a-cross-platform-ui-for-net/ Do you want a desktop mature version? Gtk# or Xwt (which is beta, but at least is opensource and fixable upstream)
    – simple language with no big mistakes: IntelliJ IDE or Resharper can guarantee code quality by suggesting huge fixes all the way, NDepend/JDepend can look for your spagetti code so you know where to fix it
    – “native performance”: NGen or Excelsior JET both give better performance everywhere
    – price of entry: free! You can start with Lazarus for your forms, but they cannot be moved right away to FireMonkey, right? And even you do it, you are not compatible with FM2 or future FM3 🙂 I mean, there is a huge compatibility price to pay for using the free sources, than the main Delphi. I hope that Lazarus will be better than Delphi but it looks at least that is 2-3 years away to do so. IDEA can import Eclipse projects, Netbeans can do the same, and MonoDevelop, SharpDevelop and Visual Studio are using the same project all the way, which is not this nightmarish as Delphi to Lazarus and back is.

  15. Hi Everyone
    I live in the UK and I have been developing with Delphi since I started Uni in 1997. I was in a job using Delphi XE until I was made redundant a few weeks ago. I have been looking for another job and there are very few Delphi jobs out there and those that are there are at the other end of the country. I think a lot of it is down to newer languages coming through such as C# which Delphi hasn’t been able to compete. Some of this is down to lack of investment, but I think a lot is down to changes in technology and people wanting to use the latest programming language.This latest pricing annoucement does seem to indicate that Embarcadero are trying to get as much money out of it as they can and whilst that’s not fair, if nobody is using the language, what are they supposed to do? Also it does not help when everytime they do something, they get shot to pieces by the author of this blog. At the end of the day all technology has a shelf life and I think Delphi is coming towards the end of its, but I think certain people on this blog need to calm down and instead of complaining all the time, suggest things that could be improved.

    1. Graham, you might want to review all my posts on this blog before assassinating my character. I have made helpful suggestions on more than one occasion and have applauded those things that I regard as positive. And I do think it is somewhat hypocritical to lay this complaint against me and then turn around and agree with the criticism. Having your cake and eating it ?

      I have been a Delphi developer since 1995 and there have always been very few Delphi jobs. It has always been something of a niche product. The fact of newer languages was never the problem – Delphi has been competing with those since it was first released, whether it was VB or Java or – latterly – the .NET framework tool chain. If anything, the times when Delphi lost it’s way were those times when it tried to compete directly with these other languages, instead of playing to it’s own strengths.

      1. Hi Deltics
        Sorry if I offended you, I didn’t make my point very clear did I ? What was trying to say was that whenever Embarcadero make any annoucement regarding Delphi, you always seem to have a go at them. Although they have done some pretty stupid things over the years and if they do anything stupid in future you are perfectly within your rights to have a go at them, I just think sometimes you overdo it

        1. When I see something worthy of criticism I will criticise in order to try to effect change. I could just “hold my tongue” and hope that somebody else notices the problems I see and if not someone else within Embarcadero then someone else who will raise their voice. Of course, with the gag orders in place on many of the most influential in the community, via the “MVP” program, the chances of this are now reduced somewhat. So I’m sorry, but I see it as even more necessary now than ever before.

          Having said that, I am less invested in the future of Delphi now than previously (you may have noticed some time ago that this changed from being a “Delphi” blog into being simply a “Pascal” blog), so it is unfortunately simply more likely that posts on Delphi now will tend to reflect a sad commentary on the sorry state of affairs as I am less engaged with and therefore simply less likely to be provoked to comment on the positive spin being put out by the Embarcadero marketing department. On which note it continues to stagger me that they have the bare faced cheek to plaster “true native” all over their iOS and OSX offerings when their UI technology is anything but “native” in any substantive sense. But I have resisted the urge to call them out on this. Once is enough I think. For now at least.

          But to address the notion that I “always have a go” at every announcement, I offer the following into evidence:


          And to counter any suggestion that I never make any constructive suggestions:

          It is not my fault if the majority of the things that Embarcadero do demand criticism or that they never listen. 😉

          1. Hi Deltics
            I think I have been a bit harsh on you and I want say sorry if I offended you at all. I agree with you that for a long time now Embarcedero have not been listening to their customers and they seem to be trying to do make Delphi do things it wasn’t designed for. I think a lot of people are moving away from Delphi as a result of that, I went to an interview yesterday and the company have Delphi 2007, but they are looking to move over to C# over the next few years to modernise their application. I myself have been learning C# in my spare time and I have been looking at Oxygene as well.

          2. >They have the bare faced cheek to plaster “true native” all over
            >their iOS and OSX offerings when their UI technology is anything
            >but “native” in any substantive sense.

            I was hoping someone would bring this up. They’re using “native” in a sense very different from an average person’s. According to their definition, Google’s own Android apps aren’t “native”!

            This obsession with “native” has hurt them in the past. After an interview with EMB’s CEO after the Delphi acquisition in the Register, the interviewer wrote a piece in her blog commenting on the CEO’s attacks on “non-native” code being too slow, etc. and mentioned that she felt she was in a ’90s time warp during the interview. 🙂 I don’t think EMB realizes that the the rest of the world realizes that managed solutions run at perfectly acceptable speeds… DWScript just showed off benchmarks showing their JIT compiler outputting faster code than 32bit Delphi!

            And for the record, I at least wouldn’t mind if the blog were harder-hitting. 🙂

  16. I think all the comments indicate that we still care about the product and watching its decline is painful. Joylyn’s blog it has been my favorite place to see a current state of the affairs at EMB. In my case I do small internal apps in Delphi and Java. Recently I purchased IntelliJ Java IDE (50% sale) and was very impressed. The amount of features in this tool is overwhelming and the price is more than affordable. I invested my own money into this product because I could afford it. In Delphi case I cannot. My employer funds a license. JetBrains shows that excellent tools can be delivered at the affordable price. I wish EMB would take notice; of course it will not…

  17. Mmmm, interesting. Personally I don’t begrudge Embarcadero a decent price for a quality product (and I far prefer that option to a cheap price for a substandard product). Of course the question then becomes whether they are delivering a quality product. From my point of view it has been passable in recent releases but then we don’t use Firemonkey which was definitely released in too immature a state.

    I am interested in all the talk about Oxygene/Prism. At some point we will want to deliver a version of our Windows software on other platforms (with Android and iOS being by far the most likely, we already have an online browser solution). We probably have about half a million lines of non visual Delphi code we would want compiled into each platform (and another half a million lines that can stay VCL Windows only).

    My impression was that Oxygene was ruled out because it has a very different syntax and therefore we wouldn’t be able to cross compile this non visual code between our VCL Windows app and an Oxygene app. Am I wrong?

    If I’m right then it seems to me that Firemonkey is the only real game in town in which case I’m very pleased Embarcadero are at least doing something! Unless there is a cross platform visual component library available for FreePascal or Lazurus which works well on both iOS and Android?

    Thoughts?

    1. RemObjects provide Oxidizer which is a tool to convert Delphi-style Object Pascal to Oxygene Object Pascal. The language syntax differences are pretty superficial in terms of conversion (procedures and functions are called methods, you declare variables in the actual method and not in a var block – stuff like that). I’m trialling Oxygene at the moment cos I’ve decided to move away from Delphi and so far it’s looks amazing and at $499 compared to the $2,000 I’d have to spend to get to XE4 it’s a great deal. Embarcadero has priced me out of their tools and to be honest I really want to get away from Delphi – it’s a sinking ship – call me rat if you want to 🙂 but I’m heading for the exit as fast as I can.

      1. Thanks for the reply. Sounds like Oxidizer is a useful tool but it isn’t really going to work for us because we’re always going to need to compile the code into our VCL application too. Unless we decided to rewrite all our VCL apps but that would be a massive undertaking for no real benefit. By no benefit I mean no increase in sales, saving a few thousand dollars in license fees is inconsequential compared to the cost of spending a few thousand hours developing a new GUI.

        This is my problem. Like it or not I haven’t seen anything that suggests anyone with a existing Delphi investment has any option other than Firemonkey for iOS/Android development.

        My preference would be for Embarcadero to devote a lot of resources to bug fixing and improvements to core Delphi (not VCL, I mean the IDE, RTL, language etc), while also making sure Firemonkey is a robust solution. Obviously they are always going to get flak from some for it not being a fully native solution (ie doesn’t use native controls) but I can live with that if their solution is at least robust and fast.

        1. You’re right that you can’t port your VCL code to Oxygene. The way I figured it was that I’d have to do a massive amount of work on our app to remove the code reliant on the VCL anyway to move to FireMonkey and after I’d spent all of that time and effort that I’d still be left in Delphi and still be left receiving annual bills of a couple of grand to update to some new version with a couple of add-ons (which I wouldnt cos I can’t justify paying those sorts of sums). For me if I’ve got to do that work anyway to move to multi-platform I’d rather put the time and effort into moving away from Delphi and then once my app code is in Oxygene I can target .NET, WinRT (for Windows 8/Windows Store apps), Windows Phone, Android, iOS and Mac OS X. That’s a pretty good trade-off to get away from Delphi and to target virtually every platform you can think off for a fraction of the cost. Moving away from Delphi is a difficult and sad thing to do – I’ve been with it for 15 years and have spent the last 8 years defending it resolutely against the “Delphi is Dead” brigade but I’ve had it with Embarcadero’s policies of throwing 3rd party acquisitions into the pot to create a patchwork of half-working, unproven technologies, hyping them to the hilt and charging us ridiculous sums for upgrades, massaging sales figures to try to lead Delphi developers into believing that they’re now part of a growing community when everyone *KNOWS* it’s declining and Embarcadero are making no effort to encourage new developers by offering products such as Microsoft’s Express range. There’s no Delphi jobs on job boards, new books are thin on the ground and forums and news groups are virtual ghost towns. Even without the cost it’s clear to me now that continuing with Delphi is bad for my career and it’s time to move on. It’s served me well but it’s time to say “it’s over!” Maybe if they’d carried on as Codegear and the way they were doing things it might’ve turned out different. Oh well.

        2. “This is my problem. Like it or not I haven’t seen anything that suggests anyone with a existing Delphi investment has any option other than Firemonkey for iOS/Android development.”

          This is music to the ears of Embarcadero executives! That’s exactly why they think they can get away with charging ridiculous upgrade fees because they think you have no choice and they’re betting you’ll end up thinking it will cost you more to move away than it will to pay the money to upgrade and get caught even deeper in the Embarcadero web of spiraling and ever more frequent upgrade charges.

          1. Fair enough. It looks like you are in a situation where you need your whole application to be multi-platform in which case I agree, if you have to rewrite the whole GUI then you can pick any pascal-ish version to do it in. We just need to make a part of our application stack multi-platform so there is a big cost difference for us between just creating a new GUI for this part vs rewriting all our GUIs.

            I would fully expect Embarcadero to be relying on this! They can try all they want to get new developers but we all know that they need some edge in order to do so and they don’t currently seem to have one. So they need to rely on their current developers. However they also need to look after them. If there is nothing worthwhile in current versions of Delphi then there is no point in us upgrading – we used Delphi 5 exclusively up until 2010 or so because it had everything we needed.

            I would like to see Embarcadero improving the quality of Delphi (you can never have too much quality and even with steady improvements since the disaster of Delphi 2005 it is still lacking) and making Firemonkey as robust, quick and integrated as possible on the various platforms. I understand the purist view that it isn’t a native control solution but the die is cast on that so they should just do what they can to make it as nice as they can.

            1. I see where you’re coming from – our main app is in Delphi 7 (although a couple of our more recent apps are in more up-to-date versions). I’ve used Delphi from V1 upto Delphi XE (including Delphi 8!) and it is the best development tool I’ve ever come across for creating Win32 apps and that goes without question. But Delphi 7 is over a decade old and we’re at a crossroads deciding our future development strategy for our main app. After a lot of research and soul-searching and looking at the way Embarcadero are handling the product and treating developers it’s very, very clear to us that Delphi is absolutely not where we need to put our development focus for the next 10 years so we have to plan our move away. Considering the work that would be involved to put our app onto FireMonkey using our existing code base (mainly to get our app onto the Mac and then mobile) is such a massive task including a complete re-design of our UI and re-factoring of business logic code that if we have to undertake it we’d rather use the opportunity to get away from Delphi and put our development in technology which clearly has a bright future ahead of it. Oxygene may not ultimately be the answer for us but once our code is on .NET (via Oxygene) it opens up massive possibilities for us to take advantage of. I mean when is Delphi going to support WinRT or Windows Phone or even Linux? Android is promised but no definite timescales have been announced yet. With Oxygene and .NET and Mono you can target all of these right now! It could take years for Embarcadero/Delphi to catch up while the rest of the world passes us by. We know the old argument about “native” but I think that’s become a bit passe now with almost every platform having app development technologies based on managed code environments (I doubt all of those millions of C# developers with .NET apps are looking longingly and jealously at Delphi developers with our native apps do you?) We acknowledge our move will take a long time and the published version of our main app will likely be in Delphi for the next 2 years or longer. However I can sleep better at night knowing we’re taking our app down a path which we believe will ensure it’s future and our careers for the long term.

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