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SDRplay and Studio1

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 12:32 am
by jon
We are delighted to have reached an agreement to acquire Studio1. Studio1 is the perfect complement to our SDR hardware products and gives us the ideal platform to deliver a complete class leading SDR solution for our customers. We look forward to working with Sandro and further developing Studio1 to unlock the full capability of our current and future products - Studio1 has established a strong customer base - we also look forward to further developing Studio1 to specifically benefit present and future owners of our products :-) The official press release can be found here:

Re: SDRplay and Studio1

Posted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 9:30 am
by jon
Since we announced the agreement to purchase the rights to Studio1, there have been a lot of questions and speculation regarding our future plans for the software and how this might affect our commitment to other software packages such as SDR Console, HDSDR and Cubic SDR.

The first point to note is that we have long terms plans for multiple new products over the next few years and because of the architectural innovations that we are aiming for in these products, specific software support will be required to unlock these innovations. Packages like the ones described above are largely hardware ‘agnostic’, but the consequence of this is the enormous demands that are placed upon the creators of these packages to support all of the different feature-sets for the wide array of hardware products out there. This involves a lot of work on their part and necessarily can take a lot of time. The only way that we can be confident of being able to unlock the full feature-set of our current and future product in a timely manner for our customers is to have control over the software that controls the radio. We already do this to a certain extent with the ExtIO plugin, but not all SDR software supports the ExtIO interface and it does have its limitations. In addition we see users express frustration at us that they cannot perform certain tasks (such as fast scanning for VHF/UHF) with the software that works with our hardware. As things stood, whilst we sympathised with these frustrations, there was absolutely nothing that we could do about it.

By having control of our own software, we now have a path towards addressing these issues. However, this in no way lessens our commitment to support HDSDR, SDR Console, Cubic SDR or ANY other software solution where the authors are willing to work with us. We fully recognise that many people have strong preferences for particular pieces of software and we do not want to do anything to undermine the options that people have to use their favoured software packages. Indeed, our view is quite the opposite. Our objective remains aim to have our hardware platforms support any and every SDR package out there. This of course may not be possible, but it is our philosophy and part of the ethos of our company.

The final point is that whilst some people are prepared to pay for software, the majority of users in this community are willing to pay little or nothing for their software. This isn’t in any way a criticism, it is simply an observation. We believe that the reason for this is twofold. Firstly, there are very high quality packages available that already cost little or nothing and secondly software feels rather ‘intangible’. With hardware, you can pick up and touch what you have paid for and get a clear sense of cost and value. With software, that isn’t so easy. However, we have to remember that software is very expensive for the developers. Packages such as SDR Console will have taken many man-years of effort to develop and we ought to remember that whilst doing this work, people still need to keep a roof over their heads and put food on the table. As a consequence, in many cases it remains an imperative to have some way to monetise this work, either through selling ‘pro-versions’, selling hardware or by selling the software itself. Making the software ‘open source’ and therefore available to the entire community to use for free and however they wish is certainly laudable but in many cases undermines the developers ability to financially support themselves.

So in summary, our decision to acquire Studio1 will take nothing away from anyone. In fact the opposite is true. We aim to develop and use the software to provide our existing and future customers, options which we hope and believe they will find very attractive. This won’t happen overnight, but we hope to have new announcements soon that will give a clear indication as to what this will mean.