I never liked the Jaws interface, always felt clunky to me. Yes lots of options, but it always felt clunky and not well organized. I do like the snappiness though. You can't deny it's freaking snappy, but NVDA is starting to lose out on performance. They're starting to go down hill fast. When they lost Jamie as the co-founder, they lost a lot and they never recovered; even though he is still working with them, he's not to the capacity he was. This has hurt them badly, maybe even more so than they realize. So not just me, but others have been having performance issues with NVDA.
Now, you get what you pay for. NVAccess really has over 2,000 open issues on GitHub. When I run Jaws, the thing is on it and doesn't lag and doesn't hang, and doesn't microstutter or crash. NVDA will do those things to me now. NVDA is also really bad with Microsoft Office products at the moment. They've released a feature to help alleviate this, and said feature was available in the configs for a year or so, but I think this is really a patch effort at best. Why does Jaws not suffer this, why does Narrator not suffer this.
I love NVDA, I've been using it for nearly 10 years, and it sucks to see it going this way. I'm a realist though, I look at all sides of the issue and call it as I see it. I don't make up stories in my mind about how it will be OK, I don't make excuses for them to other people. NVDA is very configurable. You can set per-app profiles that get switched on whenever your focus enters an app. I do this for notepad++ and vs code. When these two apps are on, my punctuation level gets set to most, and my indent reporting gets set to tones. I like NVDA's revised settings dialog, it's sort of all centralized now, and still better than Jaws's settings center.
Addons are what make NVDA awesome. The fact that anyone could code them really makes you feel as if you can chisel out your own solutions. This flexibility though, comes at a cost. That cost is what we are currently facing right now where corporations and governments do not wish to view NVDA as a screen reader candidate for their low vision or blind employees. They feel this way both in ignorance, but also a very real sense that NVDA is not secure. I have to side with them on this, as it isn't secure. Think about this, NVDA addons have the entire Python language behind them. They can literally do everything. They are not sandboxed like Jaws scripts, they have access and can get access to any part of the system they want. This makes them a huge security risk. NvAccess could fix this, by making an enterprise edition that disabled addons, but they do not. Why that is, that's anyone's guess, but there it is. I can't blame people for seeing the issues putting NVDA on a system presents, because I see them for myself.
I see the prices they charge for Jaws, whatever they are calling themselves now, and my knee jerk reaction is to get pissy about it. What price gouging little gits, I think to myself. My theory has been for a long time that they encourage the enterprise customer or even the home customer who has the ability to have Jaws purchased by an agency for them. They want that government money. But really, do I know what it costs to do what they do? I'm saying me personally. Do I know what it costs to pay for their headquarters, other offices, wages for all their employees, air fare for shows, conferences and the like? I really don't. Then you have servers, server maintenance, equipment upgrades and maintenance and so on. So can I come up with a realistic figure for all that, not without doing a lot more research than I'm prepared to do. Do I still think they're doing quite well, yes, but I'm not so sure they're price gouging for the sake of it anymore. Maybe they are, but then again, maybe they aren't. Either way, they have a hell of a higher obligation to fix things that break, being a corporation under the law than NvAccess, which is a charitable organization does in Australia.
All I can say is don't get so stuck on one that you can't see the benefits of the other, make informed decisions. You may look over the fence and see that the grass is greener, but then you may leap over the fence and see why, when you get blasted in the face with the sprinkler system that runs at odd intervals all throughout the day.
I felt the wind of your passing
is preferable to
I felt the passing of your wind