Autodesk Quietly Giving Away Design Review 20078 Feb, 2007
Until the free 2008 version is released as planned, company decides to offer current full version at no charge.
Autodesk Design Review 2007, originally priced at $199, is free. The news wasn't announced by press release or high-profile marketing campaign -- it was less-conspicuously revealed on the blog of Autodesk technical marketing manager Shaan Hurley on February 1.
Autodesk Design Review, the successor of Autodesk DWF Composer, lets users share, review and mark up 2D drawings and 3D models in a single file.
Scott Sheppard, Autodesk Engineering Project Manager for DWF-related projects, followed up in a February 2 entry of his Beyond the Paper blog, explaining that Autodesk's "original plan was to have Autodesk Design Review 2008 be free. People would buy Autodesk Design Review 2007. ... Autodesk Design Review  is scheduled to be released in the April time frame; however, the new Autodesk sales year starts February 1. Since we would no longer be selling Autodesk Design Review, we could not put Autodesk Design Review on our pricing list for the year." The solution was to make v2007 free for February and March while the company completed work on v2008, Sheppard says.
Sheppard adds that the interim move supports the company's commitment to DWF-based collaboration. He also provides information for customers who recently paid for v2007.
Register and download Autodesk Design Review 2007 on the Autodesk Web site. Alternatively, see Sheppard's February 5 blog posts for instructions regarding a direct install.
Autodesk Design Review 2007 received a Highly Recommended rating from Cadalyst Labs. The First Look Review is available on Cadalyst.com.