With ease of use improvements in its latest software, UGS seems not to be content with just jousting with high end CATIA and Pro/E but seems to want to take on SolidWorks, Inventor -- even its own Solid Edge.
But with a starting price of $8700 (in US*) NX 5 is about twice the starting price of midrange MCAD products.
UGS deals with many Fortune 500 companies. For example, UGS has 30,000 seats in General Motors. UGS would argue that its users are not price sensitive. Large firms may consider design software that costs around $10K or above the cost of doing business. Also, companies that only a decade ago paid $20K per seat will think $8700 is quite an improvement.
But what of the ma and pa operations, the 10 engineer firms? For TenLinks new service, Innovate3D, the cost of acquiring licenses of CAD software was far and away the biggest single cost of setting up the operation. In fact, we are limited in the amounts and types of services we can offer because of the cost of software.
Despite the push towards the SMB market, it's hard for me to see NX 5 becoming the dominant player with the existing price structure. As the CAD market becomes increasing global, the path to world domination must include a cost that is low enough to be absorbed by small businesses, both domestic and overseas.
*UGS has mentioned a lower cost in foreign markets but at as of this time no price list has been provided.