In a somewhat surprising move from the folks in Cupertino, editors can once again purchase the now-outdated Final Cut Studio from Apple by phone.
The desktop post-production suite had originally been discontinued after Apple released Final Cut Pro X, its ground-up reworking for professional editors. The revision, however, left many industry professionals dissatisfied: They claimed that, while it improved upon certain workflows and added intriguing options, the software was still very rough, leaving out key features that many needed to properly execute their jobs.
Apple has promised that certain features will make their way over to Final Cut Pro X in subsequent updates; in the meantime, it looks as if the company has decided to placate frustrated users by providing them with the option to purchase new licenses for Final Cut Studio instead.
As first reported by MacRumors and confirmed independently by Digital Arts, people in the UK can buy Final Cut Studio for £695 plus VAT by calling Apple on 0800 048 0408 and asking for part number MB642Z/A -- which feels a bit like ordering a transistor from Maplin. In the US it's $999 through 1-800-MY-APPLE.
No mention was given as to whether this was a permanent re-addition to the catalog, or a temporary move; however, the post-production suite will only be available through phone sales -- neither the Apple Online Store or Apple Retail Stores will carry the it -- which seems to send a pretty clear indication that Apple doesn't plan to offer the older video-editing package for long.
Though this change doesn't address the multitude of problems users have with Apple's Final Cut Pro X, at least Apple looks to be listening to the complaints from its professional base. With any luck, perhaps we'll soon see FCPX's first update coming down the pipeline, as well.