Most ‘big corporate’ entities might be like this.
I’m not going to ‘infect’ a studio’s computer if I take their drive sleds out and put mine in.
Hakers aren’t out there trying to steal readily available firmware off of 12 year old mixing consoles (if it’s even possible to do this) and spit them out to some server off in China, via PC that’s not even connected to the internet. At least not that I’m aware of. My drive isn’t likely to do damage…it’s not going online, and as much of the ‘networking garbage’ and OS services/protocols for that stuff as possible are flat out disabled.
Network hardware is often the number 1 cause of latency issues with daw software. Even when it’s not being ‘used’, bad cards/drivers cause wait states and other problems that can effect a good running DAW workstation!
When they do have network cards, they’re carefully selected, and optimized for ‘audio purposes’.
I don’t know of many studios that put their control room systems online with their business tools. Not only might that unnecessary marriage compromise the integrity of both systems…the ‘optimal performance’ setting for each network is quite DIFFERENT. The audio/video equipment needs different packet sizes, optimized for low latency over short distances, etc.
Don’t get me started on things like small teaching studios, churches, band halls (parent funded), and people who apply for small grants to do one off projects.
Churches buy a LOT of pro audio equipment, DAWs, etc. They aren’t really crazy about having ‘contracts’ to maintain accounts online that get pinged regularly for payments either. The reasons for this are numerous. They prefer to pay up one time, write a PO for the stuff, and use it for as long as they can. Running the cables and stuff put it online and keep it there, and the expenses and all involved can often be a ‘deal killer’ in getting that church a software based option at all. If it cost 6k to run the cables and install routers and stuff…and the DAW is only $600…well, do the math. They’ll just rule out the PC driven solution, and buy a dedicated stand alone mixer/recorder for $1,200 instead…
As for things like office 365, Adobe Cloud, etc…
Truth is, just about every small business I come in contact with is trying to make really old stuff from XP days continue to work. They can’t afford to send those companies $400+ a month to maintain regular subscription seats. When they are eventually forced to do it, something has to go…some service they used to provide…or even a full time employee. What they can do, is try to plan for infrastructure investments, and change stuff out X years from now. Or borrow a chunk of money to do a big upgrade ‘today’ and hopefully be done with it for another decade or so.
From personal experience, and yes in these modern times…the long term ‘commitment’ to keep paying a fee for some kind of ‘subscription’ that requires a constantly maintained account (from companies that don’t take stuff like state issued purchase orders AT ALL), way into the distant future…well, you find deployment alternatives, or you do without.
It’s easy to say a back-woods county with a budget of 500k per year for dealing with the many levels of red tape in the world should ‘get with the times and deal with it/pay for it’. Seeing it ‘actually happen’ is a whole different story.
More than once, I walked into programs that if I wanted a DAW of any kind for said program…I either used ‘my personal stuff’, or found an option with offline deployment. The ‘band/choir’ building wasn’t even considered important enough to get an internet connection. Even if the ‘money’ were in the ‘budget’ to get the stuff, it might not be approved for implementation for ‘years’ (by then it’s a different version/price/etc.). Then there’s the problem with…you can’t plug a State PO into your AVID/Sibelius account…and they sure as heck won’t wait for their money to actually ARRIVE before they enable your software.
Sometimes, I’d get lucky, and find a third party that deals with things like state/county/municipal government purchase orders as a middle man, and finds a way to ‘deploy’ things…but issues quickly arise. In most cases, the dongle ware was the easiest and most efficient route. Of course there were ‘problems’ too…like inventorying the physical dongles, finding a way to ‘secure them’ from theft, etc.
This music stuff can be quite the niche market. It’s not really like essential services that people ‘have to have’ in every community to survive. What works for a big franchise chain of retail businesses, or a huge corporation, etc…is NOT always so great for the average small business. Especially something as niche as pro audio.
At least until COVID hit…small businesses were still the ‘lions share’ of employers and deal makers around the world. I guess we’ll see in a few years…but for now, I just don’t see how all these accounts, and the always being hacked ‘cloud’ stuff is ‘safer, more efficient, more reliable, and more secure’ than plugging in a dongle.