The catch: unlike Logoport, which was free, users will have to pay a monthly subscription for Translation Workspace. From what I heard, the minimum subscription charge will be 10 Euro a month for freelance translators, and 50 Euro for agencies. Besides that "tenancy fee", users will also pay more depending on how many words they process through the system in a given time period (for now at least, work done for Lionbridge will not be subject to this surcharge).
Although there may well be some useful features in this new web-based tool, the advantages claimed in a Lionbridge blog post do not seem impressive:
Finally, a robust tool that sets translators free from their PCs and laptops, and from the fear of losing their work due to a crash.I don’t see how the new tool will set translators free from PCs and laptops: you’ll still need a computer to connect to Workspace. Not losing your work due to a crash is certainly a benefit – which you can also achieve in other ways (for example, using RAID disks, performing on-site and off-site backups, or, better, a combination of such solutions).
No more panic attacks when the power goes off.When the power goes off, your Internet connection also goes down, so, no more Translation Workspace.
Bye-bye to time-consuming backups and file downloads.I hope they are not suggesting to stop backing up your computer. Sounds like a bad idea to me.
There is no need to fill up the memory of their machines with heavy TMs and other language assets, and invest in external hard drives to keep up with the growth of their data.Memory is cheap these days, and so are large hard drives. Even big translation memories do not take much space.
Everything will be there, in the cloud, allowing them to share, collaborate and get into the crowd.For large projects, real-time collaboration could be a big advantage, true (if implemented well), but for all other projects this doesn’t seem to offer any real benefit over other tools (some of which also allow hosting memories on line).
Lionbridge touts this as a low-cost alternative (to SDL, presumably – and I think that is the main reason why SDL has recently come out with its own cheap offering, as I mentioned in an earlier post). If you look at the details, however, it’s not all that convenient: we are a small company, and 50 Euro a month (about 70 dollars), mean 840 dollars a year for a tool nobody else will be using except for Lionbridge work. That is, we’ll have to pay for the privilege of working for Lionbridge.