In a recent company announcement, Adobe said it will no longer be referring to its flagship product as Creative Suite. Its newly updated and evolved product will be known as Adobe Creative Cloud, or Adobe CC for short.
However, the biggest news to come from the announcement is the way the company will be selling its line of products. From here on out, the software will be available via subscription only. Gone are the days of paying one flat rate – also known as perpetual licensing – for the entire suite of programs or each individual program, such as Photoshop or Illustrator.
“I think it’s a great idea on many levels – from the creative end to the business end,” said Scott Rodgers, co-founder and Chief Creative Officer at Tier10. “The new system is the equivalent of leasing a car; you’ll always have new, updated software.”
With previous versions of Adobe software, the only way to upgrade was to buy the new version. The monthly subscription will allow for a constant access of updates. This will allow Adobe to evolve faster with the ever-increasing competition between photo-editing apps. This will be especially crucial in the mobile market, according to Rodgers, who has been using Adobe products since he purchased Photoshop 3 in 1995, which was the first version of the program to include the Layers feature.
“I currently have Photoshop Express for the iPhone and it is nowhere near as good as Snapseed,” said Rodgers, referring to the mobile photo-editing app by Google-owned Nik Software.
The subscription service isn’t new to Adobe, which introduced it last year with Creative Suite 6. Users can pay anywhere from $29.99 for one Adobe product to $49.99 for the complete suite, with varying prices for multiple licenses and users in an office-like setting.
Adobe’s subscription-only approach can also serve as a benefit to businesses from a budgeting standpoint. Software will now be a consistent, low fixed cost, depending on the number of employees, instead of a one-time hit in the thousands of dollars every couple of years. It also means that there won’t be any of those expensive licenses going to waste if your company bought too many.
It wouldn’t be totally out of the question to see other highly used, office-friendly software using this model, such as accounting software. In fact, some anti-virus software programs are going this route, as is Microsoft with Office 365 – a subscription-based version of its popular Office suite of programs for home and business users.
The main concern with Adobe CC, as with most cloud-based or online software, will be bandwidth availability. Each subscriber will have up to 100 GBs of storage in Adobe’s Cloud. So far, 500,000 premium members have already signed up for the subscription-only software in its first nine months of availability with Adobe CS6. This is not including the influx of new users sure to come once the subscription-only Adobe CC is released.