As most of you know, Leapfrog Software is in the software development business, working with business partners who sell our technologies and provide technical support to the end-users. Leapfrog Software provides technical support to the business partners. We at Leapfrog Software, subsequent to Raxco’s decision that it would no longer be a reseller, have been trying to determine what might be the best approach for handling public technical support. The following issues are applicable regardless of who provides that technical support (Leapfrog Software or its business partners). We would like input from our end-users. Here is the situation from our perspective: Most end-users require little or no technical support. They read the instructions including minimum system requirements, FAQ’s, application notes, consult the Wilders forum by reading existing threads or posting questions in new threads. Some need a “minimum” amount of tech support because they have a somewhat unique situation with their hardware or software. A small percentage want tech support because they have not bothered to read the materials, or they have a problem that is not caused by our software, but any problem that occurs after installation of FirstDefense-ISR they attribute to the software. Finally, there those who require considerable tech support because they are “in over their heads”. This leads to the question of how to best address the cost of providing technical support. Here are the options we currently perceive: Build the anticipated cost of technical support into the price, and allocate these dollars to those who will be providing the tech support (through pricing decisions are with the partners). This has been the model used. Positive(s): End-users don’t have to wonder what the cost of tech support might be – there is no additional charge, at least for an initial period of time. Negative(s): a) if the actual amount and cost of technical support becomes too great, it discourages partners (they lose incentive to continue); b) if a business partner decides not to continue, this presents a different risk to end-users in regard to tech support. Charge for technical support on a “per incident” basis, with a refund if the problem is a software bug. Positive(s): a) Product pricing could be adjusted so that those who don’t require technical support don’t essentially “subsidize” those who do; b) if a reseller decides to exit the market, there will still be financial incentive for someone else, be it another partner or Leapfrog Software itself, to provide technical support to those customers who bought through the departed reseller. Negative(s): a) “risk” of some unknown future cost of technical support to an end-user. With the provision of a download for a free trial period, this risk is somewhat mitigated. If an end-user has initial problems that are not easily resolved, they can elect not to purchase the product and thereby eliminate that risk of future tech support costs; b) The “marketing” negative inference of “they don’t stand behind their product – they charge for technical support”. Although this approach of “asking the advice of our users” may be non-traditional, we feel we can best service our public user base if we ask for you to weigh-in on this. What would you recommend?