EXTON, Pa.—(BUSINESS WIRE)—Dec. 6, 2004— Bentley Systems, Incorporated, today launched its "You Deserve Better" upgrade program and Web site for AutoCAD users facing forced retirement of their software by Autodesk.
The upgrade program, in response to Bentley's survey of more than
2,500 AutoCAD users, gives these users what they requested, plus a
great deal more. The program includes:
-- MicroStation-based product functionality that meets or exceeds
that of comparable AutoCAD offerings, including bonus features
not found in AutoCAD products and a wider range of product and
-- An open and universal solution compared to the AutoCAD
offerings, including native support of DWG and DGN in all
products, read and write support of DWG back to R11, and
support of Adobe PDF
-- Upgrade pricing that meets or beats the Autodesk retirement
pricing, including free viewers for DWG and DGN, multiple
price points, and an estimated savings of 25 percent to 36
percent or more for design teams upgrading from AutoCAD 2000/i
-- An ongoing company policy against retiring file formats or
user licenses, in contrast to the regular retirement practices
-- Special services and compatible functionality designed to make
the upgrade fast and easy
Bentley chief marketing officer, Tony Flynn, comments, "In our
survey of AutoCAD users, we heard many requests - the loudest being
'we want an open solution.' Users need their CAD products to natively
support DWG, DGN, and PDF. And they need historical, non-retiring
support of these formats. Clearly, an open solution would allow them
to run their businesses without forced disruption and to engage in
Flynn adds, "Our 'You Deserve Better' program offers these users
exactly what they asked for - an open, universal solution. Moreover,
we believe that it offers users a far better set of products and
services, as well as better, user-oriented policies that make them
more competitive and put them in control of their software costs."
The program's product offerings are based on four Bentley
products, in descending price:
-- MicroStation: the comprehensive 2D/3D design/engineering
system that is the preferred choice of most U.S. DOTs, plant
EPC firms, and the world's top design firms. It natively reads
and writes DWG and DGN.
-- MicroStation PowerDraft: a midrange production drafting
product, fully compatible with MicroStation. It natively reads
and writes DWG and DGN.
-- MicroStation Redline: a low-cost viewing, printing, and
redlining product for DGN/DWG-based drawings, models, or maps.
-- Bentley View: a free viewing and printing product for
DWG/DGN-based drawings, models, or maps.
These products feature technology that meets or exceeds that found
in AutoCAD offerings. Bonus features, not found in AutoCAD products,
include support of both DWG and DGN, creation of Adobe PDFs for all
project deliverables, change management, integrated surface/mesh/solid
modeling, and customization for the drafting product.
Ironically, MicroStation supports the full history of DWG better
than AutoCAD does. It reads and writes more versions of DWG than any
supported AutoCAD product - back to R11 and everything in between.
With the PDF feature, users can package and deliver an entire
architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) project - including
DWG and DGN drawings, specifications, and Microsoft Office files -
into a single, interactive PDF document at the touch of a button.
Also in the bonus category, all of the above products and features
are based on the single development platform of MicroStation, which
allows users to maintain a single representation of their data and
customizations. Autodesk products are now split across three
development platforms: AutoCAD, Revit, and Inventor. This split forces
organizations to maintain multiple representations of data and
customizations if they own Autodesk products from different platforms
- a move that Autodesk is encouraging for many.
A Wide Range of Vertical Choices
For users who require vertical applications or functionality, the
upgrade program includes:
-- Power products: low-cost, stand-alone products based on
MicroStation PowerDraft technology. These products include
PowerCivil for land development and site modeling, PowerSurvey
for survey data management, and PowerMap for production
-- MicroStation Extensions: four vertical extensions, included at
no extra charge in MicroStation, for the civil, geospatial,
plant, and building vertical markets. They include 2D civil
drafting tools in civil, customizable mapping and analysis in
geospatial, P&ID capabilities in plant, and 3D modeling in
-- Bentley applications: a comprehensive portfolio of
applications for the civil, geospatial, plant, and building
vertical markets. The functionality includes, for instance,
automated drawing production and structural engineering tools
in building; spec-driven pipe routing/placement, intelligent
P&ID, and automatic annotation/dimensioning of 3D models for
deliverables in plant; the industry-leading GEOPAK, InRoads,
and MX product lines in civil, and a full line of water
applications in geospatial.
Making the Upgrade Fast and Easy
To ensure that the program upgrade is fast and easy, the "You
Deserve Better" program includes AutoCAD paradigms (such as key-ins
and DWG workspaces) integrated into MicroStation products, special
classroom and online training, as well as direct support from Bentley.
Upgrade Pricing Saves Design Teams 25 Percent to 36 Percent or
Even with the functionality, openness, and policy advantages, the
program's pricing allows AutoCAD-based organizations to upgrade for
less than they would pay for the Autodesk forced retirement program.
The price to upgrade from AutoCAD 2000/i to MicroStation V8 is
exactly the same as the cost to move to AutoCAD 2005 - $1,495. The
price to upgrade from AutoCAD 2000/i (or AutoCAD LT 2000/i) to
MicroStation PowerDraft is $750, or 50 percent less. The price to
upgrade from AutoCAD LT 2000/i to MicroStation Redline is $100.
Also, each license for the work office comes with a home-use
license at no extra charge for those who sign up for the Bentley
Overall, a typical design organization upgrading 10 designers
using AutoCAD 2000/i would expect to save $9,070 by moving to an equal
mix of MicroStation and MicroStation PowerDraft, and equipping three
users at home. This represents a savings of 25 percent to 36 percent
or more in the first-year cost of ownership. Those including more
MicroStation Redline or Bentley View in their mix would save far more.
Plus, organizations previously forced to self-maintain a series of
retired AutoCAD products to support legacy DWG projects can now have
one universal, fully supported product that reads and writes to all
these projects. This consolidation would significantly reduce software
The program will also offer a standard upgrade discount on all
vertical products. For example, this discount will apply to new
licenses of Power products, which start at a list price of $1,495.
Licenses purchased for Bentley products are perpetual and are
never subject to unilateral retirement. Additionally, users of Bentley
products can participate in Bentley SELECT, which allows users to
upgrade their products any time they choose.