Support costs are rising for NeXT registered developers
by Clair Whitmer
Redwood City, CA: In a move that reflects the bounding number of NeXT third-party and corporate developers, NeXTedge and NeXT's developer support group are changing their fee structures.
General technical support for system administration and networking questions has been available to users through the Support Hotline for $2500 per year. The hotline will continue to support phone and e-mail, but NeXTedge is now also offering pay-per-call support. Pay-per-call support costs $40 for the first ten minutes, or $100 if the question takes more than ten minutes.
In the past, developers generally received the hotline service free of charge, although NeXT says its official policy was always to charge. The current change is a necessary business decision to support increased demand, said Elton Sotello, manager of customer support. He added that NeXT is sensitive that some developers will balk at having to pay for what used to be free.
"That's not what they implied at Developer Camp. They implied [support] was for free," said one developer who asked not to be named.
NeXT is also reorganizing NeXTstep development support. Previously, all developers who had been to Developer Camp directed problems to the developer support group headed by Kate Smith. From now on, however, this group will support only a limited number of what NeXT terms "strategic" developers, while smaller developers and all corporate developers will now direct their questions to NeXTedge. Rates for this fee-based support have not yet been decided.
The price of developer support
$40 for under 10 minutes
$100 for more than 10 minutes
$2500 per year