Written by Ken Quigley
August 11 2023
Keystroke has historically offered two different versions of Tables4act - Dual Access and Desktop. The difference between these two versions is mostly licensing and deployment options, but technically they're distinguished as follows:
| Tables4act - Dual Access
|| Tables4act - Desktop
- Licensed by user, and therefore can only work on one database
- Works on both the desktop and web versions of Act!
- Licensed by activation, and can work on multiple databases per desktop
- Works only on the desktop version of Act!
As most of our customers are aware, Tables4act is the custom table technology offered by Act! LLC as an upgrade option with Act! Premium. When we developed Tables4act back in 2017, we always intended to sell it alongside the solution distributed by Act! LLC, but a lot has changed since then, most notably the emergence of Act! Premium Cloud.
Act! Premium Cloud is simply the best Act! experience for Act! users, and as much we've encouraged our customers to migrate to APC, it has forced us to reconsider our custom table strategy. The reason for this is people are confused as to which custom tables product to buy. For example, Tables4act-Dual Access works on the Web, but not with the Web version of APC, and Tables4act-Desktop works with most desktop deployments, but not with APC-Desktop Sync.
We think people need simpler choices - and having one custom table choice for desktop deployments and another for Web is the right way to go.
So where does that leave Tables4act-Dual Access? Well, as it turns out, nowhere. It's a product that serves a shrinking market of self-hosted web users not on APC, and that is frankly not worth the ongoing investment. And there are other factors working against the continuation of Tables4act-Dual Access:
- It is the same product as the Act! custom table offering, but with less flexibility and doesn't work with APC.
- It relies on an aging licensing system that is used ONLY for Tables4act-Dual Access, and would be very costly to replace
- It requires us to maintain two code bases, which is onerous for the rate of updates we deploy with custom tables.
- The feature disparity between the two products makes it look like we're undercutting Act!, when in fact most people just don't understand the value difference between the two
- There is a lot of confusion about the feature differences between Tables4act-Dual Access and the Act! custom table product, making customers unsure of what to invest in
It is for these reasons that we've made the difficult decision to take Tables4act-Dual Access off the market effective the end of this year. No new sales will be available after that, and current subscribers will get one more renewal opportunity in 2024, but no more after that. In 2025 Tables4act-Dual Access customers can either switch to our desktop product, or upgrade to the custom tables solution distributed by Act!.
More details to come.