Silhouette America, inc. You Suck (now with less suck)

I try to keep my rants to a minimum but dear God in heaven this has me mad.

My side business is vinyl decal cutting and window clings. We use software and hardware from a variety of vendors but one vendor who I SHALL name here has screwed the pooch with their latest software update. Usually software updates are faster, leaner and more user friendly. Epic Fail.

Not only did Silhouette America, inc.  put out a new version but it is so radically different it took me a whole day to use it. Add to that the new saved files from it are THREE TIMES LARGER than the last version. Really? That’s an upgrade huh? Oh and don’t let me forget that the time it takes to cut the designs is now almost 4 times longer. WTF? The hardware is exactly the same as are the designs.

I depend on my cutting software that drives my cutters to be fast and efficient. Silhouette Studio Designer Edition v 2.9.45 was FAST. It worked. It had quirks, but cut times were fast and efficient. I didn’t have to click through 5 screens to set my cut settings.

Now with version 3.0.293, the UI is completely different, the cut options are nice but the “optimize for speed” is anything but. I can’t be the only one who’s noticed this. They conveniently have no way to discuss this with other users on their site…wonder why. I sent a support request. I seriously doubt they’ll get back. If they care they’ll fix this but I doubt it. They seem to have the same mentality as most software makers- pack in the features and who cares if it works (iTunes anyone?).

If I used facespacemybook I’d lambaste them there but I hate them even more and never visit that disaster.

As end users who PAY for our software we, or at least I, expect upgrades to help, not hurt.

I’d love to hear from other users. I can’t believe I’m the only one. I have over 400 cut files and add more every day. Each is carefully designed and setup to cut quickly. ALL of those optimizations are gone. What a waste.

Thankfully I keep ALL of the old versions and updates so I am in the process of undoing the disaster they have put upon us.

Let me know if you need the last version. I’d be happy to share.

As for you Silhouette America- I hope you have the decency to contact me and fix this. How embarrassing for you.

An addendum- Aspex Research & Technology Ltd are the ones actually responsible for this magnificently crappy software. Thanks Aspex Research & Technology Ltd. You suck too.

UPDATE: 4-28-14

I’m not an unfair guy but I do expect companies, especially those that I work with to exercise some responsibility when they release software. If it isn’t ready, don’t release it. If you MUST release it and it’s not fully tested, say so.

I did get an email back from Silhouette. They told me the regular “duh” troubleshooting things and oh by the way there’s an update that fixes the speed issue.

Really?! I normally rely on their software to mention this. I even purposely checked. No update, but on the day they replied- wow, an update.

Sure enough, the speed issue was resolved. So were a lot of the interface issues. NONE of this should have gotten to release but they fixed it pretty fast by comparison to other companies.

So, thank you Silhouette America and by extension Aspex Research. Next time however test things better. Release a beta and let US test it. We know way better than you do how things work in the real world.

<end rant/>

Author: Helicopter Jeff

I'm a vinyl decal cutting and designing, Astrophotography and general photography capturing, RC helicopter/quad copter pilot, Arduino and Raspberry Pi hardware/software developer, network, scripting and troubleshooting ninja living in the metro NY area. I am passionate about my hobbies so much I do them for a living. There's nothing better than getting paid to do what you love.

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