I really hope anyone considering iRise reads this before making their final
decision. We're a fairly small community and in general we all play well
together. Given this, it is *amazing* that we have a choice of tools to use.
So this kind of blatant and reprehensible grab for market share (see below)
should not go unnoticed.
Disclosure: While I do not work for Axure, I do have a formal agreement with
them to do training for their clients when they request it. Also, I am
admittedly an Axure fanboy. I have had no problems recommending iRise in the
past when the situation warrants, but after this that will change.
I learned last night that iRise is suing Axure for patent infringement.
Essentially, they're trying to sue Axure out of business.
Mind you, the "patent" that's being infringed was filed by iRise on March
25, 2008, and it is essentially a patent on the idea of a rapid prototyping
& documentation tool:
"The patent, titled 'Systems and Methods for a Programming Environment for
a Simulation of a Computer Application," relates to interactive simulation
systems and, more particularly, to the editing and association of text-based
requirements in the context of an interactive simulation authoring
So essentially, every time we create an annotated wireframe (whether in
Axure or no) we are violating this patent. This is completely ridiculous.
Axure has been around since 2003 and iRise is suing for a "patent" they got
in 2008? Absurd.
What follows is complete speculation: I imagine that what's happening is
that iRise is losing LOTS of customers to Axure. Axure costs $589 per
license compared to iRise's $6,000 - $10,000 (yes, per license). That's *an
order of magnitude* more expensive. While for some customers the
capabilities of iRise are likely worth it, I'm guessing most are opting for
the cheaper option that does 95% of what iRise does. So, faced with a dire
financial situation, they're attempting to sue Axure out of business. Read
the article. The lawsuit says they want Axure to stop selling rapid
prototyping products. Axure doesn't sell anything else.
I am... I am very disappointed about all this. And while there's just no way
this lawsuit can go through, it still eats me up inside that a company that
plays in our relatively tiny little industry would pull crap like this.