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Offline andrea80796  
#1 Posted : 28 January 2021 12:00:08(UTC)
andrea80796

Germany   
Joined: 24/06/2020(UTC)
Posts: 3
Location: Germany and USA
In an earlier thread (2017) odd business practices of the Freiwald Corp. were discussed.
These appear to continue - I myself have made a very unsatisfactory experience with the company's support after I received a defective USB flash drive. The troubleshooting was handled in an intimidating and uncooperative manner - I'll spare you the details. German-speaking forums are flush with similar concerns. Mr. Freiwald apparently runs the business single-handedly and appears to be easily overwhelmed if things do not go perfectly smoothly. In German-speaking insider cycles, his 'unconventional' ways of treating his clients have long been known. On the other hand, he apparently has a great product and as long as you don't need any help or support, you should be fine.
Equally importantly, Mr. Freiwald has recently implied that he may shut down his business at some point. He is on the record saying that he no longer needs the money, and he has reached retirement age. There seems to be no other employee and we are not aware of any efforts to welcome a potential successor into the business. So there is a question mark as to the future of the enterprise.
So for anybody who is interested in buying in at this time, alternatives like WinDigipet (the owner is working with a young team of programmers) or iTrain may be worth considering. Both have very active online peer-to-peer communities. As an added bonus, there is zero drama reported with these vendors when it comes to customer support and troubleshooting.
Offline PeFu  
#2 Posted : 28 January 2021 18:25:44(UTC)
PeFu

Sweden   
Joined: 30/08/2002(UTC)
Posts: 914
Originally Posted by: andrea80796 Go to Quoted Post
In an earlier thread (2017) odd business practices of the Freiwald Corp. were discussed.
These appear to continue - I myself have made a very unsatisfactory experience with the company's support after I received a defective USB flash drive. The troubleshooting was handled in an intimidating and uncooperative manner - I'll spare you the details. German-speaking forums are flush with similar concerns. Mr. Freiwald apparently runs the business single-handedly and appears to be easily overwhelmed if things do not go perfectly smoothly. In German-speaking insider cycles, his 'unconventional' ways of treating his clients have long been known. On the other hand, he apparently has a great product and as long as you don't need any help or support, you should be fine.
Equally importantly, Mr. Freiwald has recently implied that he may shut down his business at some point. He is on the record saying that he no longer needs the money, and he has reached retirement age. There seems to be no other employee and we are not aware of any efforts to welcome a potential successor into the business. So there is a question mark as to the future of the enterprise.
So for anybody who is interested in buying in at this time, alternatives like WinDigipet (the owner is working with a young team of programmers) or iTrain may be worth considering. Both have very active online peer-to-peer communities. As an added bonus, there is zero drama reported with these vendors when it comes to customer support and troubleshooting.


Been a user since the millenium shift and, luckily, haven’t experienced anything of what you describe. I find the products outstanding, the community on Mr. Freiwald’s website very supportive, and also that he himself is active and helpful there. Also, when it comes to business continuity, companies and products come and sometimes go; Try to buy e.g. a new Saab automobile now...

Smile

Inspired by Swiss railways SBB and BLS | C and K track | CS2 | TrainController Gold V9
Youtube Channel for the Andreasburg-Mattiasberg layout
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by PeFu
Offline pederbc  
#3 Posted : 28 January 2021 20:35:16(UTC)
pederbc

Sweden   
Joined: 11/06/2007(UTC)
Posts: 127
Location: Eslöv, Sweden
I fully agree with PeFu. It’s an excellent piece of software. I have been using it since ver 5 and I haven’t still come across something that couldn’t be fixed by the software. I follow the TC forum frequently and I have found occasionally a certain ”tone” in mr Freiwalds answers that can be hard, almost rude, that I don’t find to be OK. On the other hand there’s a lot of questions posted that are easily found in the manual. Many entries are complaints of a faulty program even though it’s clearly a user mistake. So I can certainly understand an irritation, but it’s still not OK.

PEDER
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by pederbc
Offline andrea80796  
#4 Posted : 29 January 2021 00:25:19(UTC)
andrea80796

Germany   
Joined: 24/06/2020(UTC)
Posts: 3
Location: Germany and USA
PeFu, pederbc, I totally agree. Its a great piece of software, no concerns there at all. Also I think that, even if the program were no longer updated, it would be good for years to come.
Just be aware that when you join the club, you need a certain resilience (aka thick skin) and by all means, be considerate before voicing any concern to avoid being blacklisted... Better to know before the fact.
Offline Danlake  
#5 Posted : 29 January 2021 10:22:08(UTC)
Danlake

New Zealand   
Joined: 03/08/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,554
Hi Andrea,

Thanks for sharing your experience.

I have been using the software since 2015 and find it to be a really well designed software, easy to work with and never had any issues that could not be resulted with guidance from other users or Friewald himself.

I also think the manuals are some of the best and most comprehensive written software manuals I have come across.

I do agree that his way to conduct and run the business is at odd with what is normal practise. At one stage there was almost boycot of selling to US market and recently Brexit and custom charges etc. create quite a fury. He is also the only software developer I know off that discourages users to update their software to the latest version.

This is just my own personal opinion. The more I have been working with the software and the possibilities it has and how he designed it I really come to the conclusion that Friewald must have a brilliant mind in this field of engineering. Whether he has same the same talents running a business - I don’t know. But I do hope the business can continue in the future as it has given me so much joy to work withThumpUp

Best Regards
Lasse
Digital 11m2 layout / C (M&K) tracks / Era IV / CS3 60226 / Train Controller Gold 9 with 4D sound. Mainly Danish and German Locomotives.
thanks 2 users liked this useful post by Danlake
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