Top positive review
Good Product, Conusing Prices & Product Descriptions
Reviewed in the United States on February 23, 2016
I've been a dedicated Norton user for over 20 years, starting with my first PC back in the 1990's. I installed this purchase - Norton Security Standard for 1 Device - on a Dell PC running Microsoft Windows upgraded to the latest Version 10. The box I received was securely sealed, standard retail packaging, containing nothing but a card printed with the product key code and instructions for download, which is what I expected. There was NOT a CD or DVD included, and nothing was marked "this item is for distribution only with a new PC" as some reviewers have stated. I did not encounter problems installing the product, which included removing a different version/previous Norton subscription. The software seems to be running properly and my PC is functioning normally. I do not detect an excessive use of system resources or a slowing of any processes. Norton security software has always been effective and worked well for me, and I do believe it’s a good product.
Symantec no longer includes a version year on their products (i.e. Norton Security Standard 2016). This was done to help avoid confusion but doesn't seem to achieving that goal for everyone. When you purchase and install a Norton product, you’re automatically entitled to all updates, patches and upgrades for that product during the subscription period purchased (i.e. 365 days). This means you'll always have the latest version installed, regardless of when it was released and/or when it was purchased.
Symantec continuously tweaks the various Norton products. If you already have, for example, what used to be sold as Norton 360 on your PC and you choose to purchase a new subscription rather than renew your existing subscription online through the software (probably because of the price), the new subscription replaces the one already on your PC; it does not simply extend it. You’ll lose any subscription days remaining on your current product because it’s being terminated/discarded, and a new “subscription days remaining” countdown begins for your new product on the day it’s installed. Since the “old” product has been removed, your new product may look slightly different and/or you may notice a change in the tools and features but you will, at that point, be running the most current and updated version of the product your purchased.
Symantec often changes the names of the various Norton products, and may also alter or adjust which tools and features are included in each version. Currently, for basic security (firewall, virus updates, identity safe, etc.) the three main products are Norton Security Standard, Deluxe or Premium. The primary difference between the versions seems to be the number of devices covered: Standard is for one PC or Mac only; Deluxe is for up to 5 PCs, Macs, smartphones or tablets; and Premium is for up to 10 PCs, Macs, smartphones or tablets. Premium includes 25 GB of secure online PC storage as well as Norton Family Premier (parental controls and child safety features) which can also be purchased separately. Additional separate purchases/subscriptions available include: Norton Mobile Security, Norton Online Backup, Norton Utilities and Norton Computer Tune Up. At least some, if not all, of the features and tools offered in these separate products appear to be included within the Standard, Deluxe and Premium Security products. Are you confused yet?
Many people have taken notice of and are confused by Symantec’s pricing, which can vary a great deal. Norton products can often be found at sources such as Amazon for much lower prices than those listed for the same products on Symantec’s website or through the product renewal process. As of 2/22/16, their website if offering “discounted” one-year subscriptions to each of their three main security products as follows: Standard $39.99 (regularly $59.99); Deluxe $49.99 (regularly $79.99); and Premium $59.99 (regularly $89.99).
Symantec seems to adhere to a business model whereby dedicated, long time users pay full price and only new subscribers get a discount. For anyone who’s price conscious or who just doesn’t like paying a higher price for something when there are better deals to be had, there is absolutely no incentive to renew your product via the program already running on your PC, or purchase your subscription through Symantec’s website. It’s cheaper to purchase a new subscription/key code elsewhere, and start over. Just remember to wait until your current subscription is a day or two from expiration in order to avoid forfeiting any remaining days, and keep in mind that your existing product version will be removed/replaced which you can do yourself manually, or trust to the installation process of your new Norton product.