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Perpetual vs Subscription software license comparison

We offer two license types for our MIDAS room booking system; a subscription license and a perpetual license.

What is a perpetual software license?

A perpetual software license is a more traditional model for purchasing software applications. With a perpetual license, you pay for the software license up-front and then have the right to use it indefinitely at no further cost. This is sometimes referred to as a "lifetime license". Typically, no future software updates are included as standard under a perpetual license. However, software updates may be available by taking out an optional support contract or subscription.

What is a subscription based software license?

Subscription-based software relates to a monthly or annual licensing model, allowing users to effectively "lease" the software for a period of time. The customer is entitled to software updates during the active subscription period. However, if the customer fails to renew their subscription, they subsequently loose access to the software.

Which software licensing model is right for me?

Determining whether to go down a subscription or perpetual software license route is often down to personal preference. Each licensing model comes with its own pros and cons:

Perpetual Software License


  • More cost effective in the longer term
  • You indefinitely "own" a license to use the software


  • Higher initial cost
  • Software updates not necessarily included as standard

Software Subscription License


  • Lower initial cost
  • Access to all software updates during subscription period


  • You "rent/lease" the software for the duration of the subscription period
  • Must pay monthly/annual subscription charges to continue using the software

The key factors to consider...

There are two factors that are probably the most important when determining whether a subscription or a perpetual software license is right for you.

In our view, the most important of these is...


It's so important to keep your software up-to-date. Not only does this give you access to new features, but also ensures that the software you're running is as secure as it can be. If you run old and out dated software applications, these may have serious security vulnerabilities which could compromise your software, systems, and personal and financial data.

With a subscription licensing model, you'll always have access to the vendor's latest software releases and updates for your product.

Under a perpetual licensing model, you may not have free access to future software updates. That's why, if you're considering a perpetual software license, we'd strongly recommend taking out - and maintaining - an optional support contact or subscription from the vendor.


The cost will also be a deciding factor for many. Don't be put off by the seemingly initial high cost of a perpetual license vs a subscription license. If you intend to use the software for more than a few years, a perpetual license will almost certainly work out cheaper in the long term than a monthly/annual subscription license over the same period.

Is a monthly or annual subscription license better?

If you've decided on a subscription based license model, the next thing to decide will be whether you subscribe for a month at a time or a year at a time. Typically, an annual subscription license will work out cheaper than paying month by month. However, the benefit of a monthly subscription is that it gives you a way to try the software first, and then if you don't like it you can simply not subscribe again the next month.

Here at MIDAS though, we actually offer a completely free 30-day trial of our room booking system. So you can see if our scheduling app is right for you without spending or committing to anything!

We offer software licenses to suite all needs!

Our MIDAS room booking system is available as either a cloud-based subscription model (with both monthly and annual subscription plans available), or as a self-hosted (on-premises) edition with a perpetual license. With our perpetual license, an optional support subscription is available - and recommended (this is included as standard with all cloud-based MIDAS systems). The optional subscription for perpetual license holders entitles them access to priority support and software updates.

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MIDAS » KB » Sales » Article 00235

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