What does $220/year of Mathematica get you ?

Thread Starter


Joined Jan 27, 2015
In my mind mathematica is like a wordprocessor but for math and with graphs I assume.

So how are they charging so much /year for the basic stuff ? I can understand if they are giving you compute times on cloud's or maybe super-computers.

And how much of the program is actually on your own PC/device ? How functional is it without the internet, if you don't care about emails, cloud storage/etc ??

Mod:link deleted.

Who exactly spends $220/year on a math program ? Rich nerds I guess, like me expect I'm poor.


Joined Sep 24, 2011
Mathematica is much more than a word processor. It is a full-featured, programmable computer algebra system, with a plethora of numerical solvers, data visualization tools, and a bunch of other stuff. I purchased a discounted student version for less than $100 when I was in school. I don't remember how much of its functionality depended on Internet access. I definitely got the sense that I was using a tiny fraction of its capabilities, but I didn't use it much, as MATLAB ended up being more appropriate for the majority of my coursework.


Joined Mar 19, 2019
You may also want to look at Microsoft Mathematics and Wolfram/Alpha. Lots of free math apps these days... And then there is always the StackExchange forums.


Joined Mar 14, 2008
Those that pay $200/year for it are likely the "nerds" that do a lot of very complex mathematical analysis and need all its high level features that are likely not all available in the free programs.
For those, the cost is likely paid for by their employers, just like other computer CAD programs are.