Intego Clarifies VirusBarrier X6 Renewal Pricing

Before I wrote about the new pricing model for Intego's VirusBarrier X6, I first contacted the company to make sure that I understood both the pricing and the mechanics of the program's new sales model. After receiving confirmation that I had things correct, I started writing.

After the piece went online, I was contacted by an Intego representative, who let me know that one of my basic pricing figures was, in fact, wrong--and by a fair bit. This error of omission on Intego's part doesn't fundamentally change my position, but it does change some of the cost details. As a refresher, here's what I wrote about pricing:

VirusBarrier X6 is $50, and another $50 every year to renew (repurchase), but it's good for two Macs. It also includes all the features of NetBarrier, so you no longer need to purchase that--meaning you spend $100 over two years, instead of $400. That's real savings, and you only have to use one program to get full protection. That's good. (If you've got a house full of Macs, the Family Pack covers five machines for only $70, or $14 per year per Mac.)

Note that this analysis looks worse if you never purchased a subscription under the old model, and own only one Mac. In that scenario, your original cost is $70, and that's your two-year cost as well, saving $30 over the new model. Without the updated virus definitions, however, your protection is probably more mental than physical--any new attacks would skate past your out-of-date software.

Later on, I related my dismay over the apparent end of any sort of cost savings for established customers:

As a user, though, I hate that customer loyalty is completely ignored in this model. "Great, you've been a customer for 12 years? Bought everything we've ever made? Thank-you-very-little, please pay the same price as everyone else."

As it turns out, almost all of what I wrote above is wrong. VirusBarrier X6 does initially cost $50, so that part was right...but the renewal charge is $30, instead of $50. That means that existing customers are recognized and given a healthy (40 percent) discount on their renewals.

It also changes the math, making the new pricing look even better than the old. After adjusting for the lower renewal price, the above financial paragraphs in the original article have been rewritten as follows:

VirusBarrier X6 is $50, and $30 every year to renew (repurchase), but it's good for two Macs. It also includes all the features of NetBarrier, so you no longer need to purchase that--meaning you spend $80 over two years, instead of $400. That's real savings, and you only have to use one program to get full protection. That's good. (If you've got a house full of Macs, the Family Pack covers five machines for only $70 for the first year, or $14 per Mac. Intego hasn't provided a price for the Family Pack renewal as of yet, so I'm not sure about the year two costs.)

Note that this analysis looks a little worse if you never purchased a subscription under the old model, and own only one Mac. In that scenario, your original cost is $70, and that's your two-year cost as well, saving $10 over the new model. Without the updated virus definitions, however, your protection is probably more mental than physical--any new attacks would skate past your out-of-date software.

Although I try my best to avoid errors in my articles, sometimes things happen that are beyond my control, as in this case. We've updated the original article to reflect the pricing correction, so anyone reading that article will also see the correct information.

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