Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Modern techniques for Generating Software Revenue


Organizations that rely on the sale of software as a revenue stream need to be concerned with maintaining flexible licensing while still preventing piracy. The violation of software licensing, whether intentional or unintentional, equals lost revenue for software vendors, who must work to minimize this loss. However, when implementing software protection solutions, vendors must be careful not to negatively affect customer acceptance with, for instance, the accidental prevention of use for legitimate users or onerous license activation processes.

When deciding to introduce software protection, it is important to consider the nature of the software being sold, the target audience, the intended market and the amount of the existing piracy. Highly specialized software that requires extensive training and support is not likely to have broad appeal on a P2P network.

Strategies for generating software revenue:

1. Reducing Software piracy

Software is one of the most valuable technologies of the Information Age, running everything from PCs to the Internet. Unfortunately, because software is so valuable, and because computers make it easy to create an exact copy of a program in seconds, software piracy is widespread. From individual computer users to professionals who deal wholesale in stolen software, piracy exists in homes, schools, businesses and government. As the number of PCs and Internet use grow, the incidence of software piracy is growing, too.

The complex and dynamic nature of online piracy makes effective monitoring by individual companies challenging. Accurate assessments of piracy threats often require time intensive manual reviews to verify the authenticity of software titles. The continued growth of piracy sites means ISVs must invest in extensive resources in order to conduct piracy monitoring. In addition, factors such as the emergence of open source clients and community supported protocols further the need for dedicated anti-piracy monitoring resources.


a). Increase Public Education and Awareness

Reducing software piracy often requires a fundamental shift in the public’s attitude toward software piracy. Public education is a critical component of any successful effort. Governments can increase public awareness of the importance of respecting creative works by informing the public about the consequences of disobeying the law, expressing their intent to strictly enforce those laws and encouraging the use of legitimate software.

b). Step up Enforcement with Dedicated Resources

Too often, software thieves are not treated as seriously as other criminals, and the punishment is too insignificant to be an effective deterrent. We can achieve this through creating specialized intellectual property enforcement units at the national and local levels, and providing dedicated resources to investigate and prosecute intellectual property theft.

c). Controlling CD piracy

There should be appropriate mechanisms for controlling CD piracy in the market. We can achieve that though regulating the manufacture of optical discs, by legislation if necessary, through registration and licensing of replication plants and compulsory use by plants of unique identification codes such as Source Identification (SID) codes. Such a step would not only prevent the considerable pirate manufacture of CDs that takes place within the Single Market, but will also set an important precedent for third countries.

d). Using software audit tools:

Audits are a key component of any comprehensive software asset management plan. Tools like Monotype Imaging, Express Software Manager Professional, Novell ZENworks Asset Management® are designed to help you identify and track licensed and unlicensed software installed on your computers and networks.

e). Technical Measures

Technical measures that increase the difficulty of duplicating software can be categorized as obfuscation, encryption. Code obfuscation is the deliberate altering of program code, whether at the source, object or machine code level. Encryption techniques include systems where the code to be executed is encrypted in some way and requires the correct key and subsequent decryption to run.

2. Time to Market

Getting products quickly to market is often a high priority for software vendors. Delays in deployment can be costly and reflect poorly on the software development team. Software protection is typically implemented at the end of the software development cycle, when pressure to get the product to market is highest. This forces developers to require a solution that can be implemented quickly without extensive training or programming.

A robust set of developer tools can cut development time while increasing the functionality delivered.

3. Synchronization

When implementing software licensing and protection, fulfillment must be considered as well. Software protection solutions almost always involve sending a license, either a hardware key or an electronic license, or even a paper license, to the end user. These licenses need to be tracked and managed.

The extent of back office integration, the amount of licenses being delivered, and the license models being implemented all impact the integration of software protection into an application.

The tracking and management of licenses are often done manually and records are maintained by the software division or business unit. The more divisions there are, the more difficult it is for a company to make decisions or gather information about all their products. It is virtually impossible to have a standard process for fulfillment and a centralized repository of licenses if each department implements their own protection scheme.

With a good Synchronization mechanism, software companies can generate revenues from the licenses


Software faces equally significant piracy challenges. Reducing software piracy rates requires the combined efforts of policy-makers, software developers and publishers, businesses, journalists and concerned individuals. The losses suffered through software piracy directly affect the profitability of the software industry.The consolidation of software protection techniques allows companies to reduce the time and effort required to implement and maintain a solution and to allow scalability.


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