No, it was a hypothetical, however, the time appears to be shrinking: 10 to 11 compared to 11 to 12 if it launches in 2024...never a certainty with MS.
Anyway, the thing is: The choice between lifetime license and SaaS subscription should be a matter of preference, with reasonable prices for both models.
Actually, the choice isn't a "should" that choice is something you want but, it's how and at what price Stardock chooses to sell it which will determine what happens. It's nice that Stardock notes your thoughts, but, does Adobe and many other companies give one a choice?
As for "with reasonable prices for both models." Everyone has his own opinion regarding what's "reasonable". That's why I mentioned a "tiered" approach which would offer features and programs sort of like Adobe does at differing prices. A sort of WYWIWYG, if you will. However, I do not speak for Stardock, and my opinions are only that, mine and not SD's.
In my experience when Microsoft releases operating systems in quick succession and 3 years apart they are all actually the same operating system.
I'd say one evolves from another keeping/losing parts and features as they choose. W11 now is rather different than at its start. Maybe the AI Start button will be the big change when W11 goes to 12. Who knows? And again, if the changes come quickly in 12 as they did in 11, subscription makes more sense. If the "evolution" is slow, "lifetime" might be the way to go. The dev channel folks would clearly profit more from the subscription model, and the dev channel isn't going to vanish.
All hypotheticals/hypotheses...and again, that's without the hardware considerations. As our friend naroon1 says, there'll always be those in the wainscotting creating programs to "help" and cause headaches simultaneously.
I really like what Victechnical wrote:
That's an assessment that every user gets to make. For instance, Microsoft Office 2021 is essentially the same as my 2013 version (for my purposes). Microsoft offers no upgrade path - it's full price every time, and not worth it to me. On the other hand new versions of Stardock apps are not just about features, they're about maintaining compatibility with the ever changing OS.
I'd only add, "while making productivity look good, as well."