Embarcadero Licensing Strategy Could Broaden Adoption Among Application, Database Developers

Embarcadero Technologies' new licensing strategy may help enterprises view the company as a more comprehensive provider of application and database development tools. Called All-Access, the new approach gives customers access to the Embarcadero's portfolio at a reduced cost.

Embarcadero Technologies has no shortage of competitors when it comes to database and application developer tools. But a new product licensing strategy may help the company broaden its footprint in the space.

The company is launching what it calls Embarcadero All-Access, an on-demand licensing model that makes all of its design and development tools available at a reduced cost. The licensing scheme is the real-world equivalent to a developer's toolbox, Michael Swindell, vice president of products for Embarcadero, told eWEEK.

"We want to provide the easiest and most affordable way for any developer, architect, tester or DBA to have access to any and all of the tools they need or may need for any platform," he said. "More and more, we are finding that team members in development organizations are working in blended roles and working with multiplatforms, languages, frameworks and operating systems. Tools have traditionally been sold either a la carte for a particular task or in suites and subscriptions for a particular vendor's captive platform."

With All-Access, customers can grab the tool they need and begin using it immediately, he added. Customers need only select one of four All-Access levels to get on-demand access to the entire Embarcadero tool chest, which includes up to 18 development and management products. These tools range from rapid application and Web development to database design and development tools.

The price for each level includes the first year of support, maintenance, all upgrades, new products as they are introduced, and access to premium content on the Embarcadero Developer Network Web site, company officials said.

"I think it's actually a pretty clever approach," said Al Hilwa, an analyst with IDC. "It forces enterprises to think more holistically around their licenses of both CodeGear [acquired by Embarcadero last year] and Embarcadero products, which I think is a good strategic move for Embarcadero to force ... [enterprises] to treat Embarcadero as more of a strategic player rather than a point vendor of a particular product."

Embarcadero All-Access also includes InstantOn, which allows users to click and run All-Access tools on-demand, without installation, either locally or over the network. The feature is available for many All-Access tools and will be available for all of them in the second quarter of 2009, company officials said.

"Once an existing customer has moved to All-Access, they gain full access to all of the tools, support, maintenance, the ability to choose between installing products and running them instantly with InstantOn, and even the ability to easily move between different versions of their tools," Swindell said.