Buying and upgrading of software can be expensive. Any graphic designer knows that purchasing all the necessary software from companies like Adobe can be costly at around $600 a year for all apps. For many home users, this could be out of reach. Millions of people use VPNs for streaming to add extra value but they come at a cost unless you use a free one.
Everyone likes to get something for free. Maybe it is a free coffee on a loyalty card or a sample for gratis through the mail. Free software should be the same, right? Surely getting free software, apps and games are great for work, education, or entertainment?
Most VPNs, word processing software and the like have paid for versions but there are often free ones too. What could be the advantages of getting free software or is it just best to be avoided?
Unwanted added extras
One of the other things that often come with free software is more free software. But very often you don’t want these apps and possibly didn’t even know they were being downloaded. When you click to install that free antivirus demo you may have missed that it was also asking if you wanted to download a new browser and search bar too. When looking for free programs for your computer or device check what else may be coming with it.
Viruses and malware
Along with the possibility of a new browser comes the threat of viruses. This isn’t to say that any reputable company would ever attach anything harmful to their software. Sometimes when you search for a free spreadsheet or another app you may end up at a site that is not managed as well as a professional site. These programs can bring something extra with them that could harm your data. Viruses damage your computer and your security.
Lack of support
When you buy software or a game you should expect a certain amount of customer service. With demos, beta programs, and free software this support may be lacking which is fair when you think that it didn’t cost you anything. However, this may not be ideal if you are using the software for work and run into big problems.
When is free software good?
After that negativity, it should be said that free software can also be fantastic. There are many games that developers release that can be enjoyed over a long period with no additional expenditure and also more serious software and apps too.
Free software and open source programs can be very beneficial. Free-to-try software and games are a good way to try out something before investing your money in a program that may not be up to your needs.
Free software to look for
When you are considering buying or downloading software it is definitely worth looking for free options or deals first. The following are some of the areas where you are likely to find free software:
Smartphones have become one of the best devices for capturing moments. The demand for video editing is ever-rising and the choice of the program will depend on the needs. For instance, you can have a video editor for a beginner, compressors for music and graphics files, and file converters. These types of software have lots of free, safe options online.
Other programs that are worth checking out are VPNs, text editors, and spreadsheets. VPNs, in particular, are so widespread these days that you could pay many dollars for a yearly subscription or you could pick up a free one in minutes online.
Have you ever tried to assess a site only to be met by an error, ‘your region is restricted’? Or are you worried by the current data leaks online and you are looking for a safe way to browse online? VPNs are a good solution, even though they differ in many ways. Some offer very fast connections and encryption and others have poor servers. There are indeed many good free VPNs though and you can see Fortune Lord’s comparison here. Like any software, it is worth comparing the free versions to the paid for ones.
Mobile apps and games
This is one of the most common areas that people will receive free software. The Google Play Store and Apple App Store are great places to add applications to your mobile devices. There are some really good applications for learning languages or increasing fitness that cost nothing, not to mention the plethora of games that while away the hours when you are bored at home…..or work.
The downside is they can drain your data. Free apps are developed by companies that need to generate revenue and pay for their staff and development so they often include adverts. These adverts are mostly just a nuisance but if you are using mobile data then they will use your credit up quicker.
We live in a digital world where different people are trying to take their products online. Gone are the days when one had to struggle with marketing as musicians can now record their songs and post on platforms such as YouTube, Spotify and iTunes. A platform such as YouTube is free while others have both free and premium versions. Web users can now stream music and games at the comfort of their homes.
The computers and mobile devices we use are powered by different apps. Office suits are some of the crucial apps that help us compose emails, prepare spreadsheets, presentations and graphics that we use on different occasions. Such apps come in different formats to suit different operating systems such as Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android.
Whether you are downloading free or paid for VPNs, editors, or other software it is worth looking for a reputable source. Make sure you do not download anything that might damage or hijack your computer. Stay away from illegal sources and look for reviews online to check reliability, performance, updates, and support.