Change is something that either makes us giddy with anticipation or sends us off screaming and pulling out our hair. It’s also the one constant in life … the one thing we can count on to happen. And so it seems that change is looming on the horizon in regards to the desktop SiteBuilder from Homestead/Intuit.
In recent conversations with various Tech Support staff and responses to Help Tickets it has become clear that Intuit is transitioning away from the (beloved) desktop version of SiteBuilder. Many of you are already familiar with SiteBuilder Lite, the rather watered down version of SB that allows limited online editing – SiteBuilder Plus, the replacement for the (did I mention beloved?) desktop version will operate much the same as Lite, only it will be a full-blown editor.
Here are some of the known’s about Plus:
• All files are stored/accessed online. With Plus files will no longer on be individual computers.
• You have to be online to work on sites with Plus – Heaven help those of us with iffy/slow internet connections. Good news though for Mac users who will now be able to use SiteBuilder.
• Access will only be available by logging in to your account via the Intuit site, going to your website section and choosing Plus from the drop-down. Gone will be the days of just clicking on a desktop icon to launch SiteBuilder. Currently the two choices under Edit are Download SiteBuilder or SiteBuilder Lite, unless you are already using Plus.
• Currently the old (yes, beloved) SiteBuilder desktop version is receiving updates, but not upgrades – meaning technical tweaks are still happening, but any new bells and whistles aren’t. This has been the case for quite some time. So essentially those of us who use SiteBuilder desktop have been paying for a program that isn’t being upgraded and we’ve never been informed there was an alternative.
• New clients and website designers who sign up new clients should know that they will automatically be put on Plus unless they are using IE7 in which case they get the Intuit version of SiteBuilder. To avoid this you can phone in and ask to be put on SiteBuilder desktop version – but that may only be a temporary thing as the change to seems to be inevitable.
Many of the changes we’ve been seeing of late I’m sure are somehow tied into the switch to Plus. Transitioning all the old Homestead accounts to Intuit, for instance, and I’m sure there are more to come. Currently there are about 4 versions of SiteBuilder. The Intuit version, the Homestead version, SiteBuilder Lite (online only), SiteBuilder Plus (online only) and the .net version of SiteBuilder that many people had to download in order to use SB in Win 7 and Vista. Combining all those accounts ‘under one roof’ has to be a huge job and getting everyone moved to Plus an even bigger one.
As I stated earlier there are a lot of unanswered questions and a lot of conflicting answers – the only thing for sure is that Plus is already in place and being sold to consumers. Whether or not the desktop version will be totally eliminated at some point remains to be verified. So far the response from tech support is Yes and No depending on which Tech you get or who answers the Help Ticket.
What are your thoughts about the possibility of losing the desktop version of SiteBuilder?