@ Chuck K :
Generally speaking, Ashampoo’s way of doing things is this : they have a vast array of reasonably powerful software, even quite powerful in some cases (Ashampoo Snap comes to mind), frequently upgraded with new functions, designed to be fool-proof and pleasant to use for many different types of people, including non-techies, at prices which vary from the very reasonable to the ridiculously cheap to the downright free.
The ridiculously cheap and free versions are not pared-down products, by any means : they are full-fledged, complete programs, and are offered at that “price” point (sometimes as low as 10 $) either by the virtue of being last year’s product, which has been superseded by an upgraded version, or through promotions on sites such as this one (but also on their own site), or through targeted offers to users who have bought or downloaded one of their programs for free, or a combination of the above.
There are two things you must put up with if you want to take advantage of this : the first is to be bombarded with frequent and loud “offers” targeted to you by mail, but also from within your Ashampoo installed software (especially if you’ve got it for free) ; the second is to suffer the deliberate obfuscation between the many, many versions they are churning out for the same product, in order to keep the machine going.
So yes, it will be difficult to identify which version is which, and to make out what’s exactly the differences between them. It’s a mild irritant, but the information (at least some of it) is on their site, even if it’s deliberately designed so that comparisons will be difficult.
The good news however, is that none of their products is a dud because of that marketing policy (you might prefer other programs for specific reasons, but that’s it). If anything, you can be reasonably sure that the freshly minted version has something extra to offer, while last years’ product is by no means deprecated, even if it’s sold with a rebate, dumped at a ridiculously low price or even given out for free.
Also, the, “entertaining” shall we say, flow of offers you’ll receive if you fall once for the Ashampoo trap, will, indeed, include some rebates with incredible value, not currently offered elsewhere.
That being said, if you expect thick user manuals, deep knowledge bases or very technically-minded user forums, Ashampoo might not be your best bet. Theirs is a very specific style of software design and marketing, which may be very attractive to some and less to others. Hope this helps.